YD was started a couple of years(mid-late 01? doh!)by Jay(Heads Up)and Andy(2Tanx)who met up for a dive and decided "something was needed".They remain the owners of the site.
There were a few mods at the time,Scuba Babe?,Eddie and Dave Williamson.Along the way there has also been Ammers,Bren and Andy Hayhurst(Dalesdivers).
The site came as a refreshing change for those of us used to the rants and nonsense that appeared to be widespread "elsewhere".From a users point of view the YD site offered a chance for divers of all persuasions (oooer)to discuss,moan,whatever,in a forum that was unbiased in terms of agency,philosophy etc.
And it would appear that it's worked.I would suggest that the widespread and rapid growth of the membership and hits on YD is equivalent only by Blitzkreig!It certainly came as a suprise to many of the "older" members,not by it's success but by it's rapid expansion.
As you may have noticed,the board is mainly self policing,very rarely do Jay or Andy have to intervene.Twits generally are tolerated,(after all none o us are perfect
)for a short while.Continued abuse or just bloody mindedness can,and has brought about a size 10 in the ar*e however.
It's a wonderfull forum,really.Main reason being in that it's succeded in what it set out to do.For eg.DIR advocates can advise those wishing to know more in a non intimidating environment.You can read about the practices of Commercial divers and CDG for eg.which you will rarely find elsewhere in one place.It's attraction is widespread and has drawn regular visitors from all arenas,with some very well respected posters.
Ask a question and you can have a variety of answers,not just from one perspective...and no one will have a go for dissagreeing with something.
It's a credit to it's creators and it's members,who now have started to meet up together and dive/socialise,sometimes en masse.
This is a purely personal view,I'm sure that more long standing members inc.Jay and Andy will be along to give you more detail.
Pretty much as Hobby has posted. Andy and I decided to set up a site with the view to finding a few buddies to dive with from the Yorkshire area (we reckoned if we got 15 - 20 it would have been successful!). Early catches like Hobby, Dave Williamson, Bren and Eddie helped us tremendously and the whole thing ballooned from there! The boards are, as Hobby says, self policing really - the only rule is to treat each other with a bit of respect and so far (touch wood) it is working.