The following sounds familiar? It should, it’s the couchsurfing leadership style!
- Take responsability (either assertively or, using the other CS-keyword, aggressively)
- Make promises. The less tangible or the more gratuitous, the better
- Silence the criticism when you don’t live up to your promise (by adapting the ground rules; by moving the criticism; by deleting threads?)
- When the above doesn’t help: ignore the criticism
- When the above doesn’t help: spin
- If all else fails: ‘loose interest’ (i.e., abandon ship)
Many of you will find this a minor issue, and you’d be right. But today, Donna announced her intention to drop moderatorship of the CS Politics and Policy group. It is typical of the above style: if your blatant lack of skill / involvement to make a much-wanted change gets too obvious, simply drop your responsability and you’re done!
For some time now I’ve been having the impression that many ‘leaders’ and their groupies have distanced themselves more and more from the regular usership. This instance was particularly clear, but I’m sure there have been others as well. All these little kings and queens, much too busy with their self-created importance to bother about the actual cause they claim to work so hard for… it would be funny if it weren’t so sad.
Sorry for ranting, I don’t usually do that. In any case, I do hope that none of ‘us’ will be foolish enough to lift this problem off Donna’s shoulders. Would do her good to actually address a (self-inflicted) problem for a change (gosh, did that sound bitter? )
Did you ever volunteer for CouchSurfing? Please edit this (incomplete) summary of time spent volunteering for CS.
If you’re active in the CS groups you probably found out that it’s not allowed anymore to discuss politics and policy in the Brainstorm groups. Threads are moved to the newly formed Politics and Policy group. Since groups are ordered by number of members, it is not so prominent yet, but with 39 or 42 members (39 on the group page, the number 42 can be deduced from Casey’s profile; and I hope this is just a normal bug) in its short period of existence it is a sign that couchsurfers do care about the politics of this organization. You can help by joining the Politics and Policy group, so that it will be a bit more prominent (hint: you can set it to “No Communication”, if you don’t want to be on it at all times, that’s how I set all my groups, and that’s how I found out that someone kicked me out of Brainstorm and then joined me again).
If you haven’t already, please fill out this survey about the questions that will be offered to the Leadership Team. And although I would have posed them in a different way, I think the most important questions are:
- Are there any full bye-laws of the corporation, further than the Articles of Agreement, or a draft thereof, and if yes, will you post it?
- Are you willing to adopt a clause in the corporate bye-laws that irrevocably dedicates all assets to charitable purposes?
- Is there any draft of the 501(c)(3) application (Form IRS-1023), and if yes, will you post it?
But of course, just pick your own favorites. You can choose 20!