I hear you and the rationale. Though the seeding part, for any boards that has no activities, is challenging unless there are more than a few eaters in the region ready/ able to post prolifically for months or even longer at the same time, with media PR help along the way. that’s pretty much the only way to get a board going (at least as far as I know). We don’t have that seed in the LA board, and it hasn’t attracted any traffic from the LA area. among the 10 or so threads in the past year, i think 9 were from Bay Area folks. the obvious reason is LA Chowhound folks have their home and they look to be comfy there. so no obvious incentive to be anywhere else.
We’ve had numerous requests for boards in the first year, basically an attempt to address the issue of ‘if there is no home, three is no incentive to post’. It certainly can be partially true. But the common phrase ‘if you build it they will come’ is not true in practice. What happened here often was after the boards (e.g. JP, SoCal, FL) were created, they were quiet for months, and ended up no busier than as part of a larger regional boards. So we end up with a board categorization structure similar to the modern-day Chowhound without the 2012-ish Chowhound traffic to support, and a number of little trafficked boards. I take the contrarian view, that empty boards are a powerful motivation not to post- ‘No one’s here anyway, let’s not waste time. move on’. This problem is not just a problem here but forums everywhere else. Arguably Chowhound has too many boards, or tags, or whatever they call them now. For newbies that aren’t familiar with Chowhound, which we want to attract to the site for the first time with the new Q&A series, a large number of empty boards can actually serve as a pretty bad advertisement for ourselves.
For all successful social networks, all of them built up one region/ section first before they worked on the next. E.g. Facebook at Harvard, then Ivy Leagues. I think it’d be to our benefit for us to get our existing communities to prosper first.