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#121679 - 01/28/04 11:39 AM Re: Chat room closing...
Rick Goodwin Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/26/03
Posts: 56
Loc: Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA
Hi Folks:

No doubt like others, I have been caught in the wave of this thread, and have had my emotional reactions to it. Some of the comments have been hurtful, some have been constructive. I believe Fred's recent posts have help grounded the issue, and the issues behind it.

I want to say that as a Board member, I have fully supported this decision, and stand by what Fred has said. If we cannot ensure safety of our members, I am not willing to run the risk that the chat service (or anything else we do) will create a situation of further abuse. Safety comes first and safety comes last.

That being said, there have been a number of events that have factored into this difficult decision. Most of them have been kept (and may need to be kept) in the confidnece of the Board.

Things can be said about the lack of transparency on this item. On some matters, it is best to keep matters behind closed doors, until we (as a board) are fully together on an item). While this issue never disappeared from our radar screens (and there was debate on the board level), other issues concerning the conference and then our very existence have cdominated our attention. All of this in a board that is spread out over the continent, working busy lives, and paying our own expenses to keep this work happening.

If these issues encourage you to get active in MS, please do so. We have a number of committees that need energy. If you haven't given to the org. in relationship to your need, do so. if you want to get involved on the board, positions will come up (committee work is the best way to learn about the org.)

But if you want to rant, or slam volunteers, or call for heads, please do it elsewhere. I can appreciate disappointment, but the rage that has been triggered is not helpful to anyone. We need to keep our eyes on the prize and work together.

I welcome responses either on the board or off-baord.

Sincerely,

Rick Goodwin
Board Secretary, Board Member
rgoodwin@themensproject.ca

_________________________
Rick Goodwin, MSW RSW
Executive Director
The Men's Project/Le projet pour hommes
Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA
"Helping men and their families build better lives"
www.themensproject.ca

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#121680 - 01/28/04 12:30 PM Re: Chat room closing...
James_dup1 Offline


Registered: 04/13/02
Posts: 1332
Loc: Wyoming
Rick,
I would like to tell you sorry my part in this thread. And tell you thank you for your post.
James

_________________________
I have more issues than Rolling Stone!


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#121681 - 01/28/04 12:37 PM Re: Chat room closing...
markgreyblue Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/19/03
Posts: 5400
Loc: Pasadena, CA
i appreciate your concern and protection of feelings here rick - but i also have to say that i cannot say that these reactions are at all unwaranted or unexpected - Having worked for a Major Coporation with a chat room associated with it - people become very VERY used to their chat community -
In a place that is for Healing and Support from traumatic events - these reactions are very understable and is a more reason compelling reason for an expectation of such angry and distressed reactions -

_________________________
"...do not look outside yourself for the leader."
-wisdom of the hopi elders

"...the sign of a true leader is service..." - anonymous



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#121682 - 01/28/04 12:39 PM Re: Chat room closing...
markgreyblue Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/19/03
Posts: 5400
Loc: Pasadena, CA
rick again though - i am energized to help - just very sad - and will help out with any thing i can do - to help

_________________________
"...do not look outside yourself for the leader."
-wisdom of the hopi elders

"...the sign of a true leader is service..." - anonymous



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#121683 - 01/28/04 12:44 PM Re: Chat room closing...
Rick Goodwin Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/26/03
Posts: 56
Loc: Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA
Hey markgreyblue:

Yes, it is all (painfully) understandable. And it also is therapeutic for all of us: as survivors, we need to work at getting out of the life stances of victimhood, perpetratorhood, and abandonment of our own authority. Once we do that, we can heal.

We are stronger is we work together. Peace and best wishes, Rick

_________________________
Rick Goodwin, MSW RSW
Executive Director
The Men's Project/Le projet pour hommes
Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA
"Helping men and their families build better lives"
www.themensproject.ca

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#121684 - 01/28/04 09:01 PM Re: Chat room closing...
Richard Gartner, PhD Offline
Past President
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/20/00
Posts: 404
Loc: New York, NY, USA
I am embarassed to say that until this afternoon I did not realize that there was this long thread about the chat room. That's why I posted my earlier answer on the Ask the Board Forum, which I moderate, and did not respond here. So many things have been brought up in this thread that it's hard to figure out what to answer. I think I will leave the accusations and blaming alone -- it seems that most of the people who posted them have re-thought their positions.

What I want to be clear about the Chat Room is that there are (at least) two separate issues about the closing. People have focused more on the financial ones, which are considerable and important. But what first made us consider closing the Chat Room was the safety issue. We felt that there was no way for us to insure that some of the very young and/or vulnerable survivors who come to the Chat Room would be protected. And we were faced on several occasions with what were clearly predators who invited young survivors for private chats, and probably contacted them outside the MaleSurvivor web site as well. While we have no knowledge about any young man being abused through this strategy, it is an intolerable possibility, and one which we don't feel we can protect against given our technology, number of moderators, etc. (This does get us back to the money issue.) And, as we considered the web site and its value in its entirety it seemed like the Chat Room was the most labor-intensive (on our part, since we have to moderate as many as we can AND screen all the other public and private chats, which are recorded) as well as the most vulnerable to abuse by predators. All of these factors (and probably others I am not thinking of right now) led us to the decison to close the Chat Room.

Having spent time in the Chat Room myself, though not recently, I am painfully aware of its value. Believe me, it was not an easy decision to make, and perhaps that is why we implemented it badly. I apologize for that to all who were unnecessarily hurt by the way we announced the decison. And I applaud all of you who are now moved to step forward to help the organization.

Richard Gartner
Past President
MaleSurvivor

_________________________
www.richardgartner.com

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#121685 - 02/01/04 03:30 PM Re: Chat room closing...
crisispoint Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/24/03
Posts: 2154
Loc: Massachusetts
Saw they've put off closing the chat room until March.

\:D !

Victory! (of a sorts)

To all who've helped with this, thanks.

Now, I'VE got to get up and work for the cause!

Peace and love,

Scot

_________________________
There are reasons I'm taking medication. They're called "other people." - Me, displaying my anti-social tendancies

fromacuriousmind.blogspot.com
malehurtandsurvive.blogspot.com

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#121686 - 02/03/04 06:26 PM Re: Chat room closing...
bec Offline
Member

Registered: 10/03/02
Posts: 187
Loc: chicagoland area
dear MS:

i truly hope you can find a way to keep the chatroom open. it appears many will be disapointed with its closing. i am a member and do not own a computer so i have never entered the chatroom due to its limited hours.

however, i have hoped that when i do buy a computer the chatroom would be available for me and all others. PLEASE MS, do all you can to keep the chatroom up and running. sincerely,


bec


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#121687 - 02/06/04 01:46 AM Re: Chat room closing...
ricmar Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/16/02
Posts: 8
Loc: NYC
Hey Guys,
I am a member of the current board. I am sure you will be hearing from others in the near future. I have to admit that I have not personally been active on the chat or discussion board. I have browsed threads, but have never posted before toady. Mostly, I have relied on Fred and several others’s assessment of the important (for some most important) role that these two MS services play for many. At times the board has been given and discussed certain threads that seemed to require full board discussion.

I spent the better part of tonight getting my self-acquainted with the chat room and the numerous threads on the Discussion Board, especially this one.

With regards to the closing of the chat room, it was good for me (although difficult) to read your comments and to hear your upset. While Fred did a good job of explaining the chat room’s value, as well as the reaction it’s users would have if it were closed, reading your individual words made me very aware of my under-participation in this key area of the organization.

The subject of the chartroom was one that the board spent a significant amount of time discussing during the past two (Fall 03 and Spring 03) full board meetings. Far from knee jerk reaction, we spent a great deal of time discussing the pros and cons of keeping it open, as well as of closing it. We spent perhaps an equal amount of time discussing the circumstances (financial, hardware, person power, etc) under which MS could (and hopefully will) safely host a chat room in the future. The decision, as I recall it, was not static, closed, or final one. After much discussion, the board agreed to close it “until” we could provide this service in a way that could assure that an MS service could not be used to cause harm.

I do not think that the subject of the chat room should/will be a closed topic. I hope and anticipate that the activists among you will not allow it.

Thanks for both calling us on it and for hearing me out.

Ricardo Martinez

_________________________
Keep to the Middle

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#121688 - 02/09/04 09:58 PM Re: Chat room closing...
guy44 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 01/25/04
Posts: 3
Loc: southern minnesota
Hello all and especially Fred T.

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Jer


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