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My last post to CS

I agree. I’m also Anu’s #1 fan :)

And I thought I was! :)

Although I have moved on to support the hospitality movement through, where a true democracy exists and no one is making money off the generosity of others, where volunteers are respected and treated with honesty and fairness by other volunteers acting as leaders with the consent of the community, I sometimes check in at CouchSurfing to see what my friends are up to and to check on the community I love and gladly worked for as a full-time volunteer until it was led away from the CS 2.0 vision by the current management.

Not well, I would say.

I feel that trying to influence the power elite of CS is futile through any other than legal means, but I feel compelled to speak up on behalf of Anu.

I worked very closely with her for more than six months. During this time, she demonstrated excellent qualities of self-motivation, leadership, responsible communication, and technical competence. But more impressive was her tireless devotion to the community, always advocating for it, always nurturing it, always defending it (even with anger at times). And above all, most impressive was her direct honesty and integrity.
She was the obvious choice for Tech Team leader, in the minds of Kasper and I, and I believe she had the support of Joe by that time. We were the 4 core volunteer developers who together did the bulk of the technical work on this website during most of the year following the Montreal Collective, where CS 2.0 was launched.

Anu was blacklisted by the CS elite, and passed over as leader of the Tech Team. After many months of devoted work on behalf of the community, the wishes of the Tech Team on this matter were completely ignored, not even consulted.

Anu has been unappreciated and treated with disrespect. This is unconscionable. Myself and other volunteers of the Tech Team were mislead and treated with disrespect.

When I resigned as a volunteer, I had strong suspicions about the motives of the CS elite, but I gave them what benefit of the doubt I could and was willing to support CS as a corporation providing a service to the hospitality community. After what I have seen and what has come to light since, no longer can I support it under the current management.

Casting dispersions on Anu’s integrity is going too far. She deserves an apology.

Calling people who gave heart and soul to this community, but now feel mislead and betrayed by the CS elite, and are angry about it, “CS-haters”, is reprehensible.

This is in the style of the Bush administration, which brands all critics of its policies “unpatriotic“.

Let me out of here. I’m deleting my profile.


4 Responses to “My last post to CS”

  • > I’m deleting my profile.

    First thought: I’m shocked. John really and definitely went away.

    You are absolutely right about what you say and maybe more consequent in your action than I am. Thinking about it.

    I’ve a problem with just leaving the place to the falsifiers of history (see my last post).

    But I see the imperative for alternative places growing every day.


  • I don’t understand how pointing out a false statement by Anu that she referenced to a place that didn’t contain the info was “going to far” by “casting dispersions on Anu’s integrity”. Can you please explain that one more? I feel a little lost.

  • It would be easy to feel lost if my statement referred to a well-meant correction of a purely technical footnote error, but it does not, and I did not say that it did.

    I deliberately used the expression “casting dispersions”. It is derived from the Spanish ‘Castio Dispersionio’ and refers to the casting of the magic spell ‘Dispersions’ causing, as the name suggests, the target of the spell to break up and scatter. So, I am referring primarily to the general tone used by some of the LT when dealing with critics which is intended to undermine the credibility and integrity of their targets.

    Repeatedly, some of the LT have used various tactics to minimize, marginalize, discredit, and misrepresent members who are critical of them. It’s unfortunate that some of the members presented their case in a way that made them easy targets, easy to be marginalized as a small, negative, fringe element, and thus obscuring the valid basis of their anger. But Anu did not make this tactical error, and I did not.

    The tone of the attacks on dissenters should be self-evident just by reading recent posts in the Brainstorm group. There are other posts elsewhere (public developers group, e.g.) with a similar tone. Anu herself felt accused of lying by Jim Stone’s response to her posts, and that alone is grounds for calling for a more amicable discourse, with an appropriate apology to mend the growing rift, if the parties involved truly want to develop a relationship based on trust.

    But this particular incident is only a tiny piece of a much larger picture stretching back over a year, and for that reason, it would be very easy to feel lost as a new observer, or feel that my statements are out of proportion to this specific event. They are not just about this specific event. Anu deserves an apology for much, much more than this.

    Anu is planning to document her experiences, in part for the benefit of future volunteers. I am considering doing the same. If you read those (if and when they appear), you may not feel so lost. Meanwhile, you will have to form your own judgment as to our credibility and integrity.


    P.S., On this site, many of us believe strongly in openness and transparency, so we appreciate when people identify themselves.

  • Dearest huh? (who can be placed in San Jose, California – conveniently close in time and space to Burning Man, anyone can make their own conclusions from this)

    It would be good to learn the skill of reading sources in a flowing text. I made it clear in my subsequent posting to the thread the reference was meant for the following sentence about culture of appreciation, which was the rhetorical point I was attempting to make (as also explained in the thread)

    Also, the source of the statement was cleared out by Valerie, from whom I heard the quote originally (I might have also heard it through other channels, in person, not too sure at this point anymore). And by my talks and observations with some of the admins back in Nelson and more recently in Rotterdam it’s quite clear to me it’s very likely this quote does represent the views of the admins / leaders quite well.

    Posted by Jim in Brainstorm, how much more do you need to make the assumption you’re being called a liar?
    “There’s SO much interesting “information” from Anu’s post that now needs to be cleared up and have a little bit more truth sprinkled into it. More “fun” work to do. Great!”

    Some further communications with Jim via email furthermore make it clear he really means every bit he says on the thread over there – in one rather nasty email-exchange he’s first claiming he did not doubt my integrity, yet the next email is about me providing “partial truths” (internal inconsistency on his part) and then closing the discussion by “I have no time for this, enough is enough”.

    (So don’t expect Jim to “sprinkle the truth” on that thread or elsewhere for that matter anytime soon – the leadership team should really think this silence approach twice for their OWN benefit: by not offering the other side of the story in any form it’s likely eye-witness accounts by the “pirates” might just be believable enough to convince at least some people.)

    But enough is enough, for me too. I sincerely hope Jim gets a chance some day to detach from CS world for enough time to find out what the real world is like and how you can’t get away with just about anything out there.

    After all this, I feel my reference for Jim is far more than justified (there was an attempt to delete it as inappropriate), and refuse to submit to arbitrary guidelines that may be created soon to prevent “non-conforming” references to stick by.

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