Power to the people and the responsibility that goes with it.

It’s been a hell of a week for me and my head is crammed with so many thoughts that they’re jumbling up in a giant, twisted spaghetti knot that I need to untangle and separate.

Like all roads to hell, this one started with good intentions.  As a car guy, I am a member of a few automobile based forums.  Well one of these forums has been around for a long time, but has been declining for over a year now.  All the “old-timers” noticed it and had complained to the management for the past year.  Nothing ever happened.

The moderators, all two of them for a site that has over 1050 pages of listed members, are frustrated as well.  They don’t have the manpower or the abilities to really make a difference.

Sunday was the last straw.  This site posted a big pat on the back to itself for “doing so well” without addressing any of the problems brought to them or addressing the members who asked to have these issues fixed.

Wanting to help, I told the guys that if they wanted, I could set up a new forum site for them.  It would be their site and they would run it.  There also would be many moderators and administrators so that there would always be someone there to keep things running smooth.

They did so I did.

It took me a few hours Tuesday to set up the majority of it, and a couple hours yesterday and today to get some bugs out.  (I also had a good amount of help today from one of the fellow administrators.)

Members from the other site were already jumping over to the new one.  Before I knew it, all the “elders” had moved over; including one of the moderators.

I’m not bothered by the move, but I am bothered by the circumstance.  That old site was once a good site.  It was the administrator over there that let it slide.  People had complained for a year about problems and nothing happened.  It took a post on the guy’s facebook page to even get a response about the frustration of the members and his solution was to have a chat with the moderators.

That chat probably won’t happen and it should’ve been with the members. We might have learned what his point of view was coming into this and what limits were placed on him by his bosses.

We’ll never know that now.

So I’m upset about this missed opportunity.

But I’m angry too.  I’m angry at the fact that this administrator is an experienced editor who ran a magazine for many years and yet did not realize the importance of his membership!  Web hosts, bloggers, writers, anyone who is in the information/entertainment field knows how important your core members are!  You don’t ignore or dismiss them!  He has far too much experience to make such a bone-headed mistake.

Hell, I run a tiny blog and I whole heartily appreciate everyone that takes the time to read my post, reply to it, or check out my Facebook page.  It means a hell of a lot to me.

How can you be so stupid as to forget the people who make the place what it is?

But then I looked at the list of new members at the new site and got sad and angry at the same time.

All those collective years of experience.  All the knowledge.  All the passion, commitment, and heart these people have was lost from that old site.  These people could’ve done so much to make that old site a better place.  They considered it their home for so many years.  They were part of the community but felt left out on the front porch of an empty house.

They could’ve done so much if only they were given the chance.

What a waste for the old place.

I’m glad I helped build them a new one.

2 thoughts on “Power to the people and the responsibility that goes with it.

  1. It’s always sad to see an organization fall apart. The finger pointing, the dashed dreams, the defensive aggressions are always tough to go through. Yet we keep on trying not because that’s what we do but because the initial dream remains desirable and hopefully attainable. It only takes one square peg in a round hole to demolish a structure. But once it is recognized how that square peg got there in the first place it’s easier to avoid making that mistake again. One either buys into the dream and works to turn it to reality or must be pushed aside. In my humble opinion.

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