1) I now dread reading the comments for House Tours or any of the contests. It is not that the negativity or snarkiness has gotten worse, it is just that as time goes by I can handle less and less of it. In the beginning, I would read every one of the comments only stopping when I reached the end. Now I read a few and if I hit a snarky or downright nasty comment that's it for me, off I go.
2) I check the site maybe once a week now, so even with the addition of AT: Boston and AT: DC, this probably will not change. I now use the main page to go through the four city sites.
3) Even though I signed up for this round, I haven't followed the Cure posts at all. I am still a fan of the idea and I will keep taking care of the Apartment Therapy Cure (Unofficial) Flickr group I started, however, I just can't keep up on a daily basis.
4) I have only seen five of this year Smallest Coolest contestants so I am not voting this time. In the past I used to keep refreshing the page all day long to keep up. Now, I'm only looking at the ones that catch my eye with their first picture. In the earlier years, regular readers mentioned the discrepancy in incomes and expertise among the contestants. This year, I noticed two more problems that need mentioning:
- They increased the size limit to 850 square feet. It's not naive to say that someone with a 850 square foot apartment does not have the same storage and clutter challenges as people in living spaces under 500 sq feet, let alone ones under 350 sq feet. There are family homes with yards that have the same square footage all over the country. That is not small. Here is one from the March issue of Cottage Living.
- People are not submitting pictures of their whole spaces but shots of fireplace mantels and candlesticks or lamps on end tables. The contest is about where they live, not just what looks cute through the camera lens. We want to see their storage solutions, which I think was the main reason for this contest on small spaces in the first place, right? If we're lucky, we might see a picture of the main couch or bed wall in the living room or bedroom. There are barely any kitchen pictures seen, unless the kitchen has just been remodeled and almost no bathroom photos. I first started not voting for an entry if it was mostly art photos, which then turned into me not voting for any.