So, after a year of using my top bar hive (personal choice after much research last year), I took a beekeeping workshop offered by the local county beekeeping association to get my certification. They opened the class by saying, "Welcome to beekeeping". The first instructor was an old timer who was a wealth of information on Langstroth hives. When asked what he thought of top bar hives, he went into a rant. According to him they were "stupid", "a waste of money", and "illegal in North Carolina" (because they don't have frames). The second instructor was little nicer. His response was, "they're better than no hives at all". After that the term "top bar" was never brought up again. Welcome indeed.