Smoking Pipe Tobacco in the 21st Century Things have changed over the decades for the pipe smoker. Smoking pipe tobacco in the company of fellow smokers has become increasingly difficult. The numbers of pipe smokers are thinning and legislation has pushed us out of many of the traditional social gathering spots we used to gather in. Pipe smokers need not despair! Smoking pipe tobacco need not be a solitary pursuit! Enter the Internet The Internet brought some of us together on Usenet groups like alt.smokers.pipe and other discussion forums. Online auction sites blew the estate pipe market into another dimension. Tobacconists took their trade to the Web and provided pipe smokers an unprecedented range of tobaccos. Top blenders like Greg Pease shrewdly rode this wave to success as did a range of pipe carvers. Needless to say, the Internet has breathed life into our hobby and community. Enter Web 2.0 Pipe smokers can not rest on these laurels. The Internet is rapidly evolving and we can keep up. There is no need not to. With the advances and innovations in technology, not only are the ways pipe smokers can interact, share, and discuss smoking pipe tobacco improving, they are becoming easier. At the dawn of the Internet, it required a fair amount of technical savvy just to set up an email account and download messages. bongs With the advent of Web based email, if you can type your name, point with a mouse, and click, you have what it takes to use email proficiently. Today, if you have what it takes to use Web mail, you have all the skill required to set up and post to your own blog, instantly broadcast updates and thoughts to all your friends, and keep up with what is on their mind. How the New Web Can Help Pipe Smokers Here is an example of how things have advanced. Imagine you are in the next state, spending time with family and during an outing you visit a flea market where you see a cluster of old pipes. While pipes are always a welcome sight, the seller wants a little more for them than you wish to spend considering none of them are of a shape you would appreciate in your collection. Nonetheless you want to mark the occasion by posting a picture of them on your blog. You pull out your mobile phone, snap the picture, select an email address, hit send, and put the mobile phone back in your pocket and go about your business. Ten minutes later, your mobile phone vibrates alerting you of a text message. You check it and see:
"Hope you snagged those, that apple looks just like this"There is a Internet address that takes you to a online auction page where you confirm a pipe of the same shape and brand has recently sold for ten times what the seller at the flea market is asking for a starting price on the entire lot. I'll leave the rest of the story to your imagination. This is not to suggest that impetus for taking full advantage of this second evolution of the Web - Web2.0 is to make money. I am only illustrating what is available. What just happened in the story took place because the pipe smoker had a blog - maybe a blog dedicated to smoking pipe tobacco, or pipes specifically, or everything that interests him. He was also networked with other pipe smokers - he followed their blogs, they followed his. He was involved in a community of sorts - a community of pipe smokers from all over who shared his love for the hobby. One of those fellows was available to him on the spot because of the new Web.