I am posting this as a response to Branded A "Bandwagon" Fan.
First, let me say a little about myself. I'm not very football knowledgeable, even though I've made strides over the past two years. I joined Niners Nation the week before the Saints-Niners playoff game though I had been stalking the site for about a year prior. I have followed and rooted for the 49ers since I can remember. I like to learn, though at times I can be snide and sarcastic. I also have a huge homer streak in me. (We are the General's Battlewagon, and we can do whatever we want!) I also like to learn and to grow, even at my advanced middle age.
Now why did I join Niners Nation? There are many 49er fan sites. One of the main reasons was the intelligent discussion (well,
most of the time um half the time well...occasionally anyways). I honestly learned a lot after joining. One of the main reasons I stayed was because I wasn't made to feel like an ignorant fool (most of the time). Now, I was corrected on many an idea. My first fanpost, Jerry Rice as WR coach: flight of fancy?, wasn't exactly a hit, but I learned a little.
Now that I've satisfied my ego on talking about myself, let me get into the heart of the matter. Niners Nation is filled with many people, from homers like myself to hyper-critical people who criticize everything we do. We have Crabtree lovers (I'm looking at you 10fortech), Battlewagon joiners (7-11 Always Open Baby!), football x's and o's geniuses, the smart-aleck (I did this just for you VD), draftniks, FA lovers, draft lovers, etc. We have differing opinions, and debate them endlessly here. During these debates/arguments, the ideas are often attacked, but rarely the person presenting the idea. And we have the Great Site-Emperor Fooch the First who kicks us all back in line if we go too far. We've welcomed fans from other teams who wish to defend their teams.
Some of the things we don't tolerate: attacking people unless you're a Seahawk fan (heh!), refusal to present arguments to your idea (and saying I don't know actually is acceptable), and coming out on the attack. (And presenting your fanpost in all bold and italics and/or all caps. And please, for the love of Montana, use paragraphs!) You want to make an argument (example: Kaepernick is a one-read one-trick QB) be prepared to have that idea attacked and be ready to defend it.
Now why am I posting this long-winded fanpost to someone who doesn't have a good chance of reading or responding to it? One reason: I'm annoyed at the insinuation that we don't allow a diversity of thought. That we're all so "petty, spoiled and little" that we can't listen to an idea that opposes our own. That we shout down anyone who thinks differently. There may be some who think that; please don't take one article or fanpost as what this community represents. Read a few of the other pieces. Debate the ideas. We encourage debate.
I wish to thank Fooch and all the writers past and present for the wonderful pieces you all have written over the years. I also want to thank all of the commenters who caused me to stretch my thinking; even the Seahawk fans who come to visit deserve a kudos. I also like that we have people who don't get caught up in the rah-rah that present a realistic (or pessimistic depending on how you think) point of view. It's been a great couple of years, and I'm looking forward to many more.