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Meadowlark

Oh, please tell me how to handle this. I'm fuming!

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It did ( and has) affected my kid so I'm not sure what you mean by that. And I'm always appreciative of people that volunteer their time for my kid. I'm not trying to make it difficult for anyone but golly, my kid can't be in 4-h because I'm not on Facebook? Now that seems absurd. I'm trying to do my part and meet her halfway.

 

Unfortunately unless you’re the one controlling the group schedule it’s her prerogative. You may need to join back up or buddy up with another parent to keep you in the loop. The group leader responded fine and it really shouldn’t have provoked your ire. And I say this as someone who hates facebook and went without an account for years. This is the natural consequence of that.

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There was a recent thread about this very type of request from the perspective of the volunteer leader. It was an interesting read for me because I'm a no-FB user.

 

Our homeschool group is split between FB and Yahoo Groups. Most times, someone will cross-post, but not always. Yes, some kids miss out because of it. It is annoying to have two platforms, but there are holdouts on both sides. It will eventually cause the group to splinter, IMO.

 

My dd was selected for a neat honor - to be part of a select group of teens in our state to provide input to one of our federally elected officials. However, they only communicate on a private FB page. So, she has missed out on this opportunity so far. I'm very conflicted about this and still waiver on telling her to set up an FB account so she can participate the rest of the school year. So sad that some groups will only use this messed-up platform. So far, we are living with our decision, lumps and all.

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I think you are being a bit stubborn in not being open to setting up a fb account just for activity info purposes. That completely fine, but I don’t think groups that communicate that way should make special accommodations for those that refuse to join.

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There is a master calendar that my son got at the beginning of the year. It lists all of the meetings, times, and even the fair dates for the summer. The only communication I would need is if something has changed, which it did tonight. Is it really too much to ask for an email or a text in those circumstances? There are only 6 families.

It sounds like for her the answer is yes.

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The friend who said she would help you stay in the loop...is she technologically savvy?

 

If so, then it would be possible for her to set up email notifications from her facebook to her email, and then for her email to automatically forward them to you (without her even seeing them in her inbox if she didn't want to).

 

Generally, though, I agree with the others that this is your responsibility, not hers or the leader's.  The onus is on you if you decide not to participate in the group's established communication method.

 

Wendy

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Anyway OP, if I understand right, you left FB and told them that, and they never gave any indication that they would not use some other form of communication. If that's the case, I can understand being a irked. I wouldn't be snarky about it, but I would say something like "hey, I told you I don't have facebook, you said it it was no problem, but you haven't been giving me info. If not having facebook is going to be a problem, I need to know."

 

Now, if you had been told right away when you left FB that that was the only form of communication, then I think the problem is on you.

I don't think it's fair to say that the OP should have been told immediately that not having FB and needing the group to communicate in an alternative for to her was a problem. The leader of the group may not have known adding on that extra step was going to difficult for her to remember on top of all the other crap in running the group. At the point of the request the leader had not had to take an extra step so she really did not know.

 

OP I think you have to accept this is the way this club communicates. If your DS is going to miss too much because of it, he should step down as an officer.

 

Being the leader of a group, even a small one is hard. Sometimes leading smaller groups is harder because every member wants a say in how things are run without taking responsibility for actually running it. When I managed a swim team with 100 kids, we'd just announce "team is doing X on Y" and no one questioned it. When I did a 8 person science class/activty for 6-8 year olds everyone was always chiming in about every detail and it really was hard to actually provide the activity.

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I would encourage any group I'm in to decouple from FB, or at least not use it as the SOLE means of communication. Because of the way Facebook handles your feeds, it is common for people not to see updates: https://twitter.com/Hellchick/status/942863353403150336

 

That's an extreme example, but it's typical. Until FB stops "curating" posts and offers the ability to simply view your feed chronologically, it's sub-optimal for this sort of communication.

 

The feed is stupid, but one does not have to rely on the feed to see updates.

You can simply visit the page of the organization or group to see all the posts on that page in chronological order.

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I really prefer not to be on Facebook. It is just one more thing you have to check every morning. But so many groups and organizations use it as their main mean of communication, so I have an account that's only purpose is to send me an email when one of those groups posts some info. I set up my notifications to email me for those groups only. Each morning when I check my email, I also get any notices of Facebook postings. It allows me to stay updated without using Facebook. This could be a solution with the 4H group.

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I think it's really kind of crazy that any group doesn't use at LEAST two forms of group communication.  I think relying on a single form of communication, especially one that is as passive as a facebook post, which gives the leader no indication that the information has been received, is not good leadership

 

Yup.  Exactly why group leaders quit.  Hearing  "you didn't accommodate my whim, so you are not a good leader" after spending like 15 hours that week setting up programs for that person's kid.  It's like people who sign up and don't volunteer have no responsibility whatsoever, and any lapse on my part brings immediate annoyance and reprisals.

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It did ( and has) affected my kid so I'm not sure what you mean by that. And I'm always appreciative of people that volunteer their time for my kid. I'm not trying to make it difficult for anyone but golly, my kid can't be in 4-h because I'm not on Facebook? Now that seems absurd. I'm trying to do my part and meet her halfway.

 

I dont' see you trying to meet her at all, but expecting her to use a second form of communication just to keep you informed. (or your friend to stop what she's doing, to keep you updated.)  you aren't doing anything extra, but are expecting that she will.

the group uses FB to send messages to the group to stay informed.  you knew that when you joined.

 

Make peace with your son being the odd man out and understand that it’s no one else’s fault.

 

OR

 

Open a new google email. Use that email to open a FB account without using your full real name (my friend’s account for our homeschool FB group is “Molly Fourkidsâ€. We all know who she is. Set the FB to forward to your new fake email. Check that email regularly.

 

That’s how to make a dummy FB account.

 

and the new fake email can be forwarded to an email you actually use.  but there will be time lags, it's not as instantaneous as a text.

their could well be opposition to switching to texts - after all, they require a text capable phone, and not everyone has one or is willing to do texts when they joined a FB communicating group.

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I used to run a small homeschool co-op. We went FB only for messages, but before we made the decision, it was like the following:

 

  • Suzy doesn't have a smart phone - please call, no texting
  • Barbara loses her phone daily, so no calls - please email
  • Nancy and her husband share the email account, and he doesn't want to see notifications - please text

Everyone had reasons, often usually more than "this is my preferred method", but it can be just too much. Even though we were really small (like 5-10 families), it made me crazy because everyone thought, well, there's only 8 of us, so she can surely contact me through ...  Well, multiply that by 8, and snow days meant I was spending 30-45 minutes getting hold of everyone . When we switched, we had people complaining right and left and then it all worked out - snow days took me watching the news and posting 1 thing (and I could go back to sleep!). The people who weren't already on FB joined or reactivated their accounts; we definitely had at least one "fake FB account" within the group. 

 

OP, I hope you can figure something out, but I don't think it should be on the leader. She isn't trying to be mean, it just gets to be too much because when you make one exception... I vote for fake FB account directed to email.

 

Edited for grammar

Edited by beckyjo
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I don't think it's fair to say that the OP should have been told immediately that not having FB and needing the group to communicate in an alternative for to her was a problem. The leader of the group may not have known adding on that extra step was going to difficult for her to remember on top of all the other crap in running the group. At the point of the request the leader had not had to take an extra step so she really did not know.

 

OP I think you have to accept this is the way this club communicates. If your DS is going to miss too much because of it, he should step down as an officer.

 

Being the leader of a group, even a small one is hard. Sometimes leading smaller groups is harder because every member wants a say in how things are run without taking responsibility for actually running it. When I managed a swim team with 100 kids, we'd just announce "team is doing X on Y" and no one questioned it. When I did a 8 person science class/activty for 6-8 year olds everyone was always chiming in about every detail and it really was hard to actually provide the activity.

 

I don't understand.  When a leader says "sure, I can do X" and then the leader doesn't do X....that is the fault of the group member?

 

To me, this is kind of like...changing a phone or email address.  Lets say this group uses group text instead of FB (which is a perfectly normal and common way for groups today to communicate.)  And some one in the group changes their phone number.  They notify the leader of the group, who says "sure, I will update my group text list with your new number."  Then.....the leader doesn't.  That isn't the group member's fault, it's the leader's fault.  "Sorry, it's hard for me to remember to change my group text list" doesn't really work. 

 

If a leader says "I will communicate with you by X method" then I think the leader should use X method.  If the leader can't use X method, than the leader needs to be the one to let the group members know.  BEFORE there's a problem. 

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I know that stinks, and I'm sorry.

 

But, I was also a 4-H group leader. Everyone was on FB and that was our communication method - but one family didn't want to check it, so they wanted me to remember to call them to remind them of every meeting, every change, and anything else they might be interested in. The previous leader had done that. I refused - there was no way I was going to remember to do that every time, and I put the information out there, and I didn't have the time to babysit (that is what it felt like to me) this one family when everyone else was capable of keeping up.

 

Now, if I was a paid 4-H agent, I might have felt differently, but volunteer? I honestly do not appreciate people who want to make my unpaid-job-that-takes-time-and-energy-away-from-my-family harder. Just no. 

 

My suggestion if you want to continue - Rejoin FB. Unfriend everyone else and just stay in that group and check it. 

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Or - maybe have someone else you are close to in the group who IS on FB agree to call or text you anything important that is shared via FB.

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I lead several groups, all on FB. I love it. I can see who has viewed the messages and all messages are in one spot, forever.

 

I’ve dealt with a woman who says she never checks her email, please text her, people who don’t have smart phones and don’t text, emails bouncing, people changing emails without telling me, the mysterious “I never got that emailâ€, on and on and on.

Hurray for Facebook! Are there issues?? Probably. Nothing is actually free in life.

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It did ( and has) affected my kid so I'm not sure what you mean by that. And I'm always appreciative of people that volunteer their time for my kid. I'm not trying to make it difficult for anyone but golly, my kid can't be in 4-h because I'm not on Facebook? Now that seems absurd. I'm trying to do my part and meet her halfway.

 

Instead of Facebook, imagine this was 1990 and you refused to turn your phone ringer on because you found the ringing intrusive,  and then were miffed that they wouldn't mail you the changes each time, or stop by and tell you. That is how it is coming across to her. 

 

You have the ability to use Facebook. They communicate via Facebook. But you don't like it, and want special treatment. 

 

Had you no internet, and no ability to use Facebook, I could see them trying to help you. But having access to the messages and basically just choosing not to read them, while wanting another communication method? Sorry, no sympathy.

 

If say, you can't be on Facebook because you have a violent stalker trying to find you, fine, let her know and maybe they can find another way to make this work. Otherwise, it's just a communication method, there is nothing moral or immoral about Facebook anymore than there is with a phone line. You don't have to gossip on it anymore than you have to gossip on the phone. Or post photos, or whatever. Just set it up to get notifications from that group. 

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Yup.  Exactly why group leaders quit.  Hearing  "you didn't accommodate my whim, so you are not a good leader" after spending like 15 hours that week setting up programs for that person's kid.  It's like people who sign up and don't volunteer have no responsibility whatsoever, and any lapse on my part brings immediate annoyance and reprisals.

It has nothing to do with a "whim."  It has to do providing a reliable means of providing information to the group at possible. I don't care what two methods groups use, but I think all groups should use two.  Whether that's group text and FB, or a web calendar and flyer, or email and phone calls or whatever.  Crap happens.  People's computers die, their kids drop their phones in puddles, flyers get lost, whatever.  Backups. 

 

I have been a GS leader, and a co-leader.  I am not ignorant of what sort of work goes into volunteering for these types of positions. 

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I would encourage any group I'm in to decouple from FB, or at least not use it as the SOLE means of communication. Because of the way Facebook handles your feeds, it is common for people not to see updates: https://twitter.com/Hellchick/status/942863353403150336

 

That's an extreme example, but it's typical. Until FB stops "curating" posts and offers the ability to simply view your feed chronologically, it's sub-optimal for this sort of communication.

 

But group notifications don't go in your regular feed. Or rather, they do, but you can also set it up to notify you whenever anyone posts in the group. Plus you can once a day or week or whatever go directly to the group page to check. 

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I know that stinks, and I'm sorry.

 

But, I was also a 4-H group leader. Everyone was on FB and that was our communication method - but one family didn't want to check it, so they wanted me to remember to call them to remind them of every meeting, every change, and anything else they might be interested in. The previous leader had done that. I refused - there was no way I was going to remember to do that every time, and I put the information out there, and I didn't have the time to babysit (that is what it felt like to me) this one family when everyone else was capable of keeping up.

 

Now, if I was a paid 4-H agent, I might have felt differently, but volunteer? I honestly do not appreciate people who want to make my unpaid-job-that-takes-time-and-energy-away-from-my-family harder. Just no. 

 

My suggestion if you want to continue - Rejoin FB. Unfriend everyone else and just stay in that group and check it. 

 

I can relate.  I actually have no problem with sending a FB post and sending around a text, and I would even do an email,  but I absolutely draw the line of making phone calls. Like many volunteers, I am in charge of several different activities.  Phone calls can be such a time suck, and I don't have time (or the desire) to chat.  

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It has nothing to do with a "whim."  It has to do providing a reliable means of providing information to the group at possible. I don't care what two methods groups use, but I think all groups should use two.  Whether that's group text and FB, or a web calendar and flyer, or email and phone calls or whatever.  Crap happens.  People's computers die, their kids drop their phones in puddles, flyers get lost, whatever.  Backups. 

 

I have been a GS leader, and a co-leader.  I am not ignorant of what sort of work goes into volunteering for these types of positions. 

 

Someone's computer dies, that's a bad day. "I don't like the way you do it, do it different for me every day going forward.  Or you are a bad leader" is a whim, to me.  Or at bare minimum, a true pain in the butt.

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The youth sports league out here uses multiple methods. 

 

They have a website that they post stuff on.  They post the same info to facebook.  They also then text the information to the coaches.  Information about things like game day changes appears EVERYWHERE.  The website, the FB page, then depending on how far in advance, I would get a paper notice at practice AND a reminder group text the day before.  DD9's GS leader always had a group text and a newsletter after the meetings. 

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Someone's computer dies, that's a bad day. "I don't like the way you do it, do it different for me every day going forward.  Or you are a bad leader" is a whim, to me.  Or at bare minimum, a true pain in the butt.

 

I think you are missing something.

 

I have said two things.  All groups should use at least two methods.  And that a leader who says they will do X communication...should do X communication. 

 

Neither of which means "I don't like the way you do it, so do it different for me every day going forward or you are a bad leader." 

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I don't understand. When a leader says "sure, I can do X" and then the leader doesn't do X....that is the fault of the group member?

 

To me, this is kind of like...changing a phone or email address. Lets say this group uses group text instead of FB (which is a perfectly normal and common way for groups today to communicate.) And some one in the group changes their phone number. They notify the leader of the group, who says "sure, I will update my group text list with your new number." Then.....the leader doesn't. That isn't the group member's fault, it's the leader's fault. "Sorry, it's hard for me to remember to change my group text list" doesn't really work.

 

If a leader says "I will communicate with you by X method" then I think the leader should use X method. If the leader can't use X method, than the leader needs to be the one to let the group members know. BEFORE there's a problem.

Again if you've never made an accommodation you may not know you actually can't do it consistently or at all. At the point of being asked the leader, who is already volunteering to manage a lot of stuff for the group and has a life beyond the group, doesn't actually know that one more thing on her to do list is too much. So, she says yes she will do it. However, IME this kind of agreeing to the EXTRA thing is really a polite "I'll try." Honestly, "I'll try" is all we can expect. Now, the OP knows it was too much to ask.

 

Remember the leader is a volunteer. The leader has more to keep track of than one family. The leader has her own family to take care of, other volunteer work and possibly a job.

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It has nothing to do with a "whim."  It has to do providing a reliable means of providing information to the group at possible. I don't care what two methods groups use, but I think all groups should use two.  Whether that's group text and FB, or a web calendar and flyer, or email and phone calls or whatever.  Crap happens.  People's computers die, their kids drop their phones in puddles, flyers get lost, whatever.  Backups. 

 

I have been a GS leader, and a co-leader.  I am not ignorant of what sort of work goes into volunteering for these types of positions. 

 

Yes, FB is only 1 method for the volunteer to post, but people can check it from their phones, from their home desktop or laptop, from their iPad, or from their Kindle. So, I'd be rather cranky if someone said they did not have any way to check FB unless they had no home internet, no tablet, and no smart phone. I'm sure there are still people out there with none of those things, but I haven't run into them in any of my kids' groups.

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I thought poor communication was a requirement of 4-H.  That seems to be what I've found out from anyone I've met who does 4-H and from our local groups.  Even the people running it don't know what's going on.  Requiring FB to communicate is an improvement over the "I don't know, call around on this eight year old phone list and see if anyone remembers what 4-H is" method they use around here.

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Again if you've never made an accommodation you may not know you actually can't do it consistently or at all. At the point of being asked the leader, who is already volunteering to manage a lot of stuff for the group and has a life beyond the group, doesn't actually know that one more thing on her to do list is too much. So, she says yes she will do it. However, IME this kind of agreeing to the EXTRA thing is really a polite "I'll try." Honestly, "I'll try" is all we can expect. Now, the OP knows it was too much to ask.

 

Remember the leader is a volunteer. The leader has more to keep track of than one family. The leader has her own family to take care of, other volunteer work and possibly a job.

I have been a GS leader, and a co-leader.  I am not ignorant of what sort of work goes into volunteering for these types of positions. 

If the leader isn't sure she can accomodate, then say so.  There's nothing wrong or rude about that.

 

 

 

 

 

I am curious how people would feel if this was the other way around.  Lets say it's the leader who has been doing FB, then decides to leave.  And says she will use group texts (and ONLY that) to communicate from now on.  And someone pipes up and says they don't have a smart phone, just a dumb phone that doesn't receive texts.  Is that person now a special snowflake?

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Yes, FB is only 1 method for the volunteer to post, but people can check it from their phones, from their home desktop or laptop, from their iPad, or from their Kindle. So, I'd be rather cranky if someone said they did not have any way to check FB unless they had no home internet, no tablet, and no smart phone. I'm sure there are still people out there with none of those things, but I haven't run into them in any of my kids' groups.

 

If someone tells me up front that they only use FB for communication....ok, fine, no problem, I won't join.  I have no issues with that.

 

But if someone says they use FB and group text but then doesn't text and only posts info on FB, that's a problem.

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If the leader isn't sure she can accomodate, then say so.  There's nothing wrong or rude about that.

 

 

 

 

 

I am curious how people would feel if this was the other way around.  Lets say it's the leader who has been doing FB, then decides to leave.  And says she will use group texts (and ONLY that) to communicate from now on.  And someone pipes up and says they don't have a smart phone, just a dumb phone that doesn't receive texts.  Is that person now a special snowflake?

 

Did the leader actually say she could?  Maybe I am reading the OP wrong.  To me, it sounds the OP said I am no longer on FB, here is my info.  I didn't catch if the leader actually said she would communicate via another method.

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I thought poor communication was a requirement of 4-H.  That seems to be what I've found out from anyone I've met who does 4-H and from our local groups.  Even the people running it don't know what's going on.  Requiring FB to communicate is an improvement over the "I don't know, call around on this eight year old phone list and see if anyone remembers what 4-H is" method they use around here.

 

:lol:

 

Locally, last I heard the building was undergoing repairs where we would do some of our meetings. I actually met the mom that has the place where archery takes place so I figure I'll at least be in the loop through her LOL

 

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OP, I'm agreeing with others that it is on you, not the volunteer leader, to keep up with communication if you opt out of the primary group communication method.

 

I suggest a quick text to either the leader or your friend once a week:

 

"Is the 4H meeting still scheduled for x:00?" so that most of the time the response could be a simple "yep".

 

I think this would be least burdensome to them.

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Did the leader actually say she could?  Maybe I am reading the OP wrong.  To me, it sounds the OP said I am no longer on FB, here is my info.  I didn't catch if the leader actually said she would communicate via another method.

 

This is what I interpreted as the leader agreeing.

 

I just checked my email to see what her response was. Her words were "okay, good to know". How would you take that?

It's certainly true that this is rather ambiguous.  This is the point where the leader should have said....I am not sure I can send out separate emails for you.

 

 

Although since this communication itself happened through emails so.......I dunno.

 

 

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If the leader isn't sure she can accomodate, then say so. There's nothing wrong or rude about that.

 

 

 

 

 

I am curious how people would feel if this was the other way around. Lets say it's the leader who has been doing FB, then decides to leave. And says she will use group texts (and ONLY that) to communicate from now on. And someone pipes up and says they don't have a smart phone, just a dumb phone that doesn't receive texts. Is that person now a special snowflake?

I can't imagine a leader in the middle of tenure as leader changing the communication method that is working.

 

That said, if one decided they were against FB and wanted out, I would expect them to request someone to step up and volunteer to manage the group communication for her. She could then give info to the communication coordinator. The communication coordinator could then be the person to find out the best universal method to contact everyone. The best universal method may still be FB.

 

I would be surprised if a leader would decide to complicate the group communication though.

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I think you are missing something.

 

I have said two things.  All groups should use at least two methods.  And that a leader who says they will do X communication...should do X communication. 

 

Neither of which means "I don't like the way you do it, so do it different for me every day going forward or you are a bad leader." 

 

 So it is "have two communication forms or you are a bad leader"? She didn't have to have two before.

 

I don't WANT to be in one of those groups where I get a FB message, email and text all with identical info every time..... that's an annoyance, not a good thing.  I put up with it, because I know the leader does it because someone said "Do things different for me".     We have that in my daughter's girl scout troop.  28 sets of parents getting multiple identical  messages multiple times a week because one lady won't do facebook and one other lady won't check emails.   I don't complain, because it makes it easier for the leader, but it's not "good leadership" (or bad).  It's simply  passing on her problems to all of us.

 

I also want to say, when a person says "I'm opting out of Facebook, so will you call me with every little update instead" and the response isn't an immediate "No. I prefer one communication method",that doesn't make the person a bad leader.  It is hard to have to tell a person "no" and self-advocate.  Especially for the type of people who volunteer in the first place. 

 

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This is what I interpreted as the leader agreeing.

 

 

But I interpreted it differently, so maybe it is just a miscommunication.  It doesn't even sound like the OP asked directly for a second form of communication, more of an assumption it would happen without any confirmation.  I am fairly direct and would just ask outright, though, so I could be reading it all wrong.

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OK, I see where the leader didn't even agree to provide alternative communication to the OP.

 

"Good to know" is not agreement to anything.

 

It's more of a " I've got a lot going on and figuring out this extra thing is not priority right now. (And maybe I will remember to figure it out later)"

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 So it is "have two communication forms or you are a bad leader"? She didn't have to have two before.

 

I don't WANT to be in one of those groups where I get a FB message, email and text all with identical info every time..... that's an annoyance, not a good thing.  I put up with it, because I know the leader does it because someone said "Do things different for me".     We have that in my daughter's girl scout troop.  28 sets of parents getting multiple identical  messages multiple times a week because one lady won't do facebook and one other lady won't check emails.   I don't complain, because it makes it easier for the leader, but it's not "good leadership" (or bad).  It's simply  passing on her problems to all of us.

I absolutely welcome multiple notifications.  I appreciate it. 

 

 

 

 

I also want to say, when a person says "I'm opting out of Facebook, so will you call me with every little update instead" and the response isn't an immediate "No. I prefer one communication method",that doesn't make the person a bad leader.  It is hard to have to tell a person "no" and self-advocate.  Especially for the type of people who volunteer in the first place.

I am sorry that it's "hard to have to tell someone no" but when a leader isn't upfront about what they can and can't do....it's the kids that lose out.  And that's where the problem is.

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But I interpreted it differently, so maybe it is just a miscommunication.  It doesn't even sound like the OP asked directly for a second form of communication, more of an assumption it would happen without any confirmation.  I am fairly direct and would just ask outright, though, so I could be reading it all wrong.

 

 

OK, I see where the leader didn't even agree to provide alternative communication to the OP.

 

"Good to know" is not agreement to anything.

 

It's more of a " I've got a lot going on and figuring out this extra thing is not priority right now. (And maybe I will remember to figure it out later)"

Absolutely agree that more clarification on the part of the OP probably could have saved everyone a lot of frustration. 

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I absolutely welcome multiple notifications.  I appreciate it. 

 

I am sorry that it's "hard to have to tell someone no" but when a leader isn't upfront about what they can and can't do....it's the kids that lose out.  And that's where the problem is.

 

:iagree:  I totally agree with this.  A leader, no matter how hard it is, needs to be upfront and clear about what they can and cannot do.

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I have been the communications volunteer for several of dd's activities over the years.  It seems that the more technology we have, the more this issue seems to come up....communication preferences.

 

To the poster who says all groups should have two means of communication....OK, I have done that in all of my volunteer roles, but there has always still been the family that says, "We don't do FB and I never check my email, so can you just call/text/passenger pigeon the messages to me?"  I currently have a family in a 100+ kid organization that does not do any electronic communication.  No email, FB, texts, etc.....  They want me to call them.  This is a group in which 5-10 emails go out a week.  No.  I am not going to call you 5-10 times a week.  Sorry.  Find a buddy family in the group that is willing to call you 5-10 times a week or bow out.

 

It really doesn't matter how simple you think the request is.  It is extra steps for the volunteer and they are well within their rights to decline.  

 

As others have said, one tactic would be to offer to take over the communications and then you can have as many avenues as your choose.  Or have your son join FB.  Another idea would be to send a text 12 hours before each calendar event confirming the times and basic details.  The text can be worded in a way in which the leader does not need to respond if the info you have is correct and only responds if something has changed.  This is a way to assure yourself that you have the correct info and a gentle way to remind the leader if there has been changes she did not yet relay to you.  Not perfect, but the only easy way I can see you getting info without relying on someone else to remember to inform you.

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OP, I'm agreeing with others that it is on you, not the volunteer leader, to keep up with communication if you opt out of the primary group communication method.

 

I suggest a quick text to either the leader or your friend once a week:

 

"Is the 4H meeting still scheduled for x:00?" so that most of the time the response could be a simple "yep".

 

I think this would be least burdensome to them.

I think is the best solution.

 

As a leader, I find this amusing because I have btdt. No, I'm not going to send one person a different communication because they decided to quit FB. I don't care how many people there are, I'm full up with things I'm doing and not adding on anymore, if it isn't good enough then someone else can do the job, this is not a paid position.

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There is a master calendar that my son got at the beginning of the year. It lists all of the meetings, times, and even the fair dates for the summer. The only communication I would need is if something has changed, which it did tonight. Is it really too much to ask for an email or a text in those circumstances? There are only 6 families.

Clover buds is the younger group of 4-H; she probably changed the time so it would work for parents with kids in both groups.

 

Facebook is pretty much the only way to communicate for many people under 40. Several of the groups my kids are in don’t use email at all(and the younger 20-something patients don’t use email, only Facebook messenger), and not using Facebook is, frankly, akin to refusing to use email in 2007 and expecting people to call you. I understand the frustrations, but if you aren’t going to use Facebook when it is the sole source of communication for many groups, it’s up to you to figure out how to communicate. I do think calling six families, or even one, is too much to ask when one can spend thirty seconds typing a message onto a Facebook group from their phone while making dinner.

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I have been the communications volunteer for several of dd's activities over the years.  It seems that the more technology we have, the more this issue seems to come up....communication preferences.

 

To the poster who says all groups should have two means of communication....OK, I have done that in all of my volunteer roles, but there has always still been the family that says, "We don't do FB and I never check my email, so can you just call/text/passenger pigeon the messages to me?"  I currently have a family in a 100+ kid organization that does not do any electronic communication.  No email, FB, texts, etc.....  They want me to call them.  This is a group in which 5-10 emails go out a week.  No.  I am not going to call you 5-10 times a week.  Sorry.  Find a buddy family in the group that is willing to call you 5-10 times a week or bow out.

 

It really doesn't matter how simple you think the request is.  It is extra steps for the volunteer and they are well within their rights to decline.  

 

As others have said, one tactic would be to offer to take over the communications and then you can have as many avenues as your choose.  Or have your son join FB.  Another idea would be to send a text 12 hours before each calendar event confirming the times and basic details.  The text can be worded in a way in which the leader does not need to respond if the info you have is correct and only responds if something has changed.  This is a way to assure yourself that you have the correct info and a gentle way to remind the leader if there has been changes she did not yet relay to you.  Not perfect, but the only easy way I can see you getting info without relying on someone else to remember to inform you.

Oh absolutely I get that there will ALWAYS bee the odd one out.  Completely understand that.  But, like you said, we have lots of tech.  There are about eleventy billion ways to communicate and the fact of the matter is that no one uses each and every single one.  Everyone has one or two or 12 that they don't use.  When a group picks one and only one, that virtually guarantees that people will be excluded.   Picking at least two common methods casts a wide net and is perfectly reasonable. 

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I absolutely welcome multiple notifications.  I appreciate it. 

 

 

I am sorry that it's "hard to have to tell someone no" but when a leader isn't upfront about what they can and can't do....it's the kids that lose out.  And that's where the problem is.

Multiple people have told you that it's normal for people (especially giving, people pleasing folks like volunteer 4H leaders) to think they might be able to do *one more thing* for others, so they're far more likely to give a vague yes than a firm no.

 

But we don't always know what's possible, and humans can be wrong or even fail. "I'm not going to do that," is a nice, crisp response, but when it doesn't happen - even without a lot of communication as to why - that is also a response in itself.

 

See WoolySocks post upthread: The interpretation here should be, "OK, I tried to get two people to be my minions but I guess that's not going to happen, oh, well, it was worth it to try..." and then pragmatically decide whether to set up the dummy FB or quit the group. No drama. Just personal responsibility.

 

Personal responsibility. When the information is being faithfully disseminated, it's YOUR job to access it for your own use.

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I absolutely welcome multiple notifications.  I appreciate it. 

 

 

 

I absolutely do not.  It is obnoxious and because so many communications are duplicated over so many groups, we tend to miss messages in the fray.  Dd is in one group that texts, emails, and FBs every single thing.  It drives me bonkers.

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The #1 rule of leadership - no good deed goes unpunished. Whatever a leader decides, someone will have an issue with it (literally, every time). The volunteer leader gets to pick reasonable communication methods and the people who aren’t leading need to figure out how to work with that.

Edited by Moxie
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Multiple people have told you that it's normal for people (especially giving, people pleasing folks like volunteer 4H leaders) to think they might be able to do *one more thing* for others, so they're far more likely to give a vague yes than a firm no.

 

But we don't always know what's possible, and humans can be wrong or even fail. "I'm not going to do that," is a nice, crisp response, but when it doesn't happen - even without a lot of communication as to why - that is also a response in itself.

 

See WoolySocks post upthread: The interpretation here should be, "OK, I tried to get two people to be my minions but I guess that's not going to happen, oh, well, it was worth it to try..." and then pragmatically decide whether to set up the dummy FB or quit the group. No drama. Just personal responsibility.

 

Personal responsibility. When the information is being faithfully disseminated, it's YOUR job to access it for your own use.

 

If a leader messes up by saying they can do X then they can't do X....then the leader messed up.  Like you said, humans make mistakes.  But that doesn't mean the mistake is the group member's fault.  Just like humans make mistakes...humans change too.  It's not wrong to make a change and inform a group leader, then be upset if the group leader says they can accommodate the change, and then don't make the accommodations.

 

IMO, the biggest issue here is that the OP didn't clarify the response when she notified the leader of the change.  Not that she requested the change in the first place. 

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If someone tells me up front that they only use FB for communication....ok, fine, no problem, I won't join.  I have no issues with that.

 

But if someone says they use FB and group text but then doesn't text and only posts info on FB, that's a problem.

 

I don't understand need for a two forms of communication rule - if FB can be accessed from your phone, why should the leader send another notice to your phone via text? My thought here is an internet-based form of communication can be accessed by any internet-enabled device, so it can be accessed easily for most people. If your phone falls in a puddle, you're not going to get a text, but you can still get a FB message. If your computer dies, you can still get a FB message off your kindle or phone. 

 

PS: this is mainly coming from my point of view that I do not need nor want 2-3 notifications for every thing. I have 3 kids who have multiple activities each, plus my own meetings and appointments, I don't want to drown in notifications of the same change/activity. I hate that my dentist sends me an email, a text, and forces a google calendar appointment onto my calendar (that ends up duplicating the appointment I already put there).

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I don't really have anything productive to add to the discussion, it I think group texts are annoying. A text goes out to everyone in the group, then my phone dings every time anyone responds back. I remove myself from group texts whenever possible.

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I absolutely do not.  It is obnoxious and because so many communications are duplicated over so many groups, we tend to miss messages in the fray.  Dd is in one group that texts, emails, and FBs every single thing.  It drives me bonkers.

 

Multiple notifications has less to do with people avoiding FB and more to do with technical failures.  Emails that get sent to spam folders and auto trashed, web pages that crash, flyers that get lost, group texts that don't get to the phone, etc etc.

 

 

Which, off topic, I can't figure out why sometimes, when I take my phone off Wi-Fi and put it on cell data, I sometimes get a barrage of texts or emails to my phone that were sent earlier in the day. 

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Clover buds is the younger group of 4-H; she probably changed the time so it would work for parents with kids in both groups.

 

Facebook is pretty much the only way to communicate for many people under 40. Several of the groups my kids are in don’t use email at all(and the younger 20-something patients don’t use email, only Facebook messenger), and not using Facebook is, frankly, akin to refusing to use email in 2007 and expecting people to call you. I understand the frustrations, but if you aren’t going to use Facebook when it is the sole source of communication for many groups, it’s up to you to figure out how to communicate. I do think calling six families, or even one, is too much to ask when one can spend thirty seconds typing a message onto a Facebook group from their phone while making dinner.

 

This must be regional.  NONE of the teens/early 20's I know would even consider FB.  It's for old people. LOL

 

My ds21 had a FB acct when he was 15-16.  He chose to deactivate it around age 19?  He actually doesn't use social media at all.  He is an Anth major and has studied and written several research assignments on the downfall of human interaction resulting from social media. HAHA.  None of his friends have active FB accts.  Some use other forms of SM though.

 

DD15 has chosen to stay FB free although she does have Instagram. That and SnapChat seems to be what teens/Early 20s use in our area.  

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