Within without, take 1.
One thing that you can say about anyone who has ever been involved with freecycling is that it engenders Passion with a capital P. Not only is my blog (hopefully) demonstrating passion, but everywhere you look you can find people speaking extremely Passionately about the subject. No more Passion is demonstrated than in the subject of whether one should leave TFN to its own devices and freecycle elsewhere, perhaps with SharingIsGiving or some other group.
To decide this is a difficult question. If you are on TFN staff then the position is that any group that goes away from TFN must have been “stolen” and that the group’s membership definitely were not asked (aka polled). This is patently an emotional reaction that mostly has absolutely no basis in fact and can be proven to be wrong, time and time again. Don’t you just love that passion!
If you are a “normal” member you probably don’t care. TFN is not on your radar. All you are interested in gifting locally and being a supportive part of your community. If that is true then that is a critical point.
If you are a moderator then you probably defer to your owner. If you are an “owner” then you have probably invested considerable effort in creating the group, building the group and generally being a goody-goody for your community. And I am sure in that you never felt once that you did it for the greater good of TFN. Am I wrong?
See where I am going?
Where I am going is getting every stakeholder involved in freecycling to think about their group and who “owns” it. I would argue that in the end the members own it. And in that I would agree with TFN’s stance that if any owner wishes to take a group away from the TFN fold then they should formally ask their membership first.
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