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Some time ago I suggested renaming IPMS to ISMS (International Scale Modellers Society) to reflect where scale modelling is going but it did not go down well at the time (about 30 years ago).

IPMS still has a lot of work to do about how we are perceived outside the society. To the uninitiated outside it the mention that we build plastic scale models prompts the response 'Oh! So you stick Airfix kits together as a hobby?'

We all know differently of course, but it is a matter of perception by the uninitiated.

For example if I were to say that I was a Model Ship Builder, to the uninitiated their perception of how I build models would in all probability be totally different, visualising that I would be a craftsman working in wood not plastic.

Edited by noelsmith
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How about retaining the current FB page, but create a second, private, page for members only. The private page is for discussion of IPMS business, including discussions on issues at the Convention, etc, etc. 

The existing page can be re-cast as strictly for modelling topics only - ask how-to questions, show off your latest creation, advertise and post photos of model shows, etc, etc. If anyone starts a potentially controversial post, the mods don't approve it - it dies right there. Anyone adds a controversial reply to a post, mods delete it. Put all this in the revised page rules - basically, stay on topic and keep it civil, folks.  No such thing as 'free speech' on a privately-owned space. The old page could be retitled or rebranded as 'Scale Modeling presented by IPMS/USA', or some such. 

Keep our 'dirty laundry' on the private page where the non-member agitators cannot see it. 

Edited by PaulBradley
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2 hours ago, PaulBradley said:

How about retaining the current FB page, but create a second, private, page for members only. The private page is for discussion of IPMS business, including discussions on issues at the Convention, etc, etc. 

The existing page can be re-cast as strictly for modelling topics only - ask how-to questions, show off your latest creation, advertise and post photos of model shows, etc, etc. If anyone starts a potentially controversial post, the mods don't approve it - it dies right there. Anyone adds a controversial reply to a post, mods delete it. Put all this in the revised page rules - basically, stay on topic and keep it civil, folks.  No such thing as 'free speech' on a privately-owned space. The old page could be retitled or rebranded as 'Scale Modeling presented by IPMS/USA', or some such. 

Keep our 'dirty laundry' on the private page where the non-member agitators cannot see it. 

I thought this too, the latest e-board minutes show it was discussed and the consensus seemed to be keep one page and get more moderators. It does make sense, we have this members only forum. So in my opinion your suggestions for the page are spot on, clean it up! Also I think, do things that force people to come here to talk about IPMS business and/or have those “dirty laundry” discussions.

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7 hours ago, noelsmith said:

Some time ago I suggested renaming IPMS to ISMS (International Scale Modellers Society) to reflect where scale modelling is going but it did not go down well at the time (about 30 years ago).

IPMS still has a lot of work to do about how we are perceived outside the society. To the uninitiated outside it the mention that we build plastic scale models prompts the response 'Oh! So you stick Airfix kits together as a hobby?'

We all know differently of course, but it is a matter of perception by the uninitiated.

For example if I were to say that I was a Model Ship Builder, to the uninitiated their perception of how I build models would in all probability be totally different, visualising that I would be a craftsman working in wood not plastic.

I have mixed feelings about this, I agree about the perception we have, I’m not sure if a rebrand would help much. I usually get blank stares from anyone not directly familiar with our hobby too. 

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14 hours ago, ghodges said:

I read the 2030 Vision for IPMS proposal with very mixed feelings. Overall, I have to say it is NOT a vision I can support.

The premise of "continuing to accept the current culture of fear and bullying" is something I cannot accept.

I don't think such a "culture" exists in IPMS/USA. Even reported instances of "fear and bullying" are fairly rare and totally subjective. An example I heard as RC last year was this:

One member made a series of proposals at his local club. The group discusses the proposal and voted it down. This happened more than once.

The reported bullying was totally subjective. Having ideas rejected by a group decision is not getting bullied, even though it may feel that way after it happens in a series of events.

Everybody feels bullied by somebody at some time. This is part of the human nature as individuals either assert their established dominance. We usually choose to apply this to animals, but forget we suffer the same fate. The older sibling dominates the younger thanks to size and experience as children. The younger usually feels bullied. Most people can grow past this to become "well adjusted adults" but some carry that grudge to the grave. This grudge often makes them insecure & oversensitive and they cry "bully" every chance they cam.

Other ways dominance plague society at large are dominance nice games related to territory, religion, resources or mating. One a large national scale we have drug lords fighting for dominence and the resultant widespread criminal activity. One a personal scale it leads to people fighting (even murdering) over any number of issues as they try to gain or maintain dominence over one other.

The basic form of dominance games IPMS deals with is our competition itself. Modelers enter their works in the hopes they can dominate their fellow society members. This used to be more genteel with the losers often grouping that the judges are either incompetent or just plain stupid for not seeing the excellence of their masterpiece. This still happens, only now they have a larger audience thanks to social media (itself being an arena for dominence games)

This doesn't create a "culture of bullying" 

Everything else I disagree with this premise, flows from it.

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I agree with James, but here is the latest comment on Phil Petersons announcement post about resignations. This is the kind of thing that should be voiced and discussed here, amongst members, but this is what I’m talking about when I say airing our dirty laundry in public doesn’t help anything. This is also what I’m talking about when I say there are some who don’t seem to care who they bully or run over to get what they want, or the perception they are presenting, this is the kind of thing that should not be tolerated on the FB page in my opinion.IMG_1070.thumb.jpeg.12fc089ac1e0a55c54f59065b358693c.jpeg

 

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Indeed, this single post in and of itself is the very reason we should have a separate page for members only - where exactly this sort of thing can be discussed (though not in the manner this Darrin chappie does! 🙄) without it being aired in public and where anyone, E Board members included, can discuss matters without fear of non-member agitators. This is Society business, not public business. The general public doesn't need to see this 'sausage-making' in action. 

Edited by PaulBradley
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17 hours ago, ghodges said:

Hmmmm... much to ponder and a lot of good thoughts above.... and one not so good thought....

FACE BOOK AND SOCIAL MEDIA: establish 1 or 2 new PRIVATE pages; 1 for the Eboard/NCC/RCs and anyone else interested in the "nuts and bolts" of running IPMSUSA and have admins approve every member in order to join. Create a second private page for model posting where admins also must approve joiners but for MODEL posts/CONTEST updates only. ADVERTISE ONLY THE 2nd ONE! Keep them separate as far as content goes. Let the current FB page die if it cannot be deleted through FB administrators (tough to do in my experience without codes). That's the only way I can see to establish some "control" over what's posted in the future, and it doesn't involve deleting anyone already on the old page. Also, MOST IPMS members don't/won't go there anyway, so it's not like the admins will have to check all 4000 names to be sure they're members, AND they can delete/suspend people who prove to be uncivil.

I read the 2030 Vision for IPMS proposal with very mixed feelings. Overall, I have to say it is NOT a vision I can support. While it does have some good basic ideas at heart I can support like softening IPMSUSA's approach to competition and focusing more on the ART of model building; I CANNOT get behind the idea of any kind of Ethics Committees nor even its proposal to give every member "periodic training on the Society’s brand, ethics, and vision". Most of the proposal seems to be the solidification of control and power through an expanded Eboard with Socialistic overtones. It would create MORE work and more duties at an executive level and require more volunteers in a hobby society already strapped for qualified leadership. 

I'm not even sure I can support its stated idea to expand IPMS to include ALL modeling types. In fact, I have to disagree with it. We are not train modelers, nor RC control modelers, nor paper modelers, nor wooden ship builders. We are PLASTIC modelers! I can understand redefining and expanding the definition of "plastic" and the various mediums used in building models, but it's all in order to build PLASTIC models, and not other types. I'm sure that's one of the reasons our membership is less than its potential among ALL model hobbyists... BUT in my mind our target members are PLASTIC model builders who thus far have shunned us, and not the entire world of model building enthusiasts. In trying to appeal to ALL, we'll bite off more than we need to and create more work and problems in the long run.

There are things that can be looked at and perhaps done to improve the "value for your buck" in joining IPMSUSA without reinventing the wheel, expanding the Eboard, or trying to control our membership anymore than in the past. IPMSUSA can rehab their image and interests without radical change, although CHANGE is needed to give people a reason to look at us in a new light. Keep it simple, set concrete goals that are easy to comprehend, try to use the decades of experience already within our membership, and do it all in a series of small, manageable steps instead of trying to jump ahead all at one time and become something we were never intended to be.

Gil :cool:
 

I suggested a members only FB page during the e-board meeting in San Marcos.  The e-board shot it down (it's in minutes from a quarterly meeting).

I'm active in two local clubs, I'll volunteer to Judge at Nats, but that's about it.  I'm going to start signing up for seminars and tours, something I haven't done in the past.

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Mr Cook is wrong about the '80% appointed EB'

Right now  the only "appointed" member is Noack. Soon there will be 3 replacement officers, but even then it'll only be 37.5% (3/8) 'appointed

I think appointing past officers that volunteer to serve, myself included, is only fair to the Society. After all, we were selected by our peers before and none of us have done such a bad job that we were expelled from  the society.

Edited by jcorley
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16 minutes ago, BWScholten said:

I suggested a members only FB page during the e-board meeting in San Marcos.  The e-board shot it down (it's in minutes from a quarterly meeting).

I'm active in two local clubs, I'll volunteer to Judge at Nats, but that's about it.  I'm going to start signing up for seminars and tours, something I haven't done in the past.

If you want to hurt IPMS/USA, a society of 55 years, this eboard couldn't to a better job.

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Several reactions to Mr. Cook's attached post:

1. This is mild, even polite, when compared to many other posts on the FB page.

2.  I have read multiple posts in which the poster asserts that they have paid dues and that, therefore, IPMS owes them whatever it is that they think IPMS owes them. "Dues paying member" is usually cited as their particular status.  I offer that IPMS owes them exactly what it owes all other PMS members.  I won't go over everything, but it seems that IPMS members are principally owed the Journal and the ability to attend the Nats.  I don't know that they are owed tit-for-tat interaction with an officer or judge or another member.

3. I have noticed that, in addition to being annoying (a word chosen rather than others I considered), on social media, there are those who demand that you engage with them.  It goes like this:  I make some nasty assertion or characterization or demand, nobody responds (the ultimate put down), and I go bonkers and demand that whomever I demeaned must respond so I can demean them again.

4.  Another strain in this, and other, grievances is that IPMS stuff costs money.   Whatever the amount of money, the complaint is that it is too much.  A complaint I have heard many times is that Nats vendors should be required to offer significant discounts because it costs a lot of money to attend the Nats.  Some vendors are selling something I want at, horrors!, MSRP.  After all, I spend too much money to attend, so I entitled to a subsidy.

HST, I am again pondering who IPMS is beholden to.  Does IPMS exist for IPMS members?  Or does IPMS exist for anybody who has ever built, is building, or may build a model?  I am reminded of an IPMS chapter of which I was once a member.  It was routine for one non-member (because the general meetings were open) to show up and try to sell various items to the attendees.  I complained.  I was told that someone might sometime for some reason want to buy something he was offering, so the seller was of value to the chapter.  I concluded that one mission of that chapter was to provide IPMS customers to any vendor from off the street.

So, again, what is the purpose of the IPMS FB page?  To serve current IPMS members or to serve anybody who wants to be served?

Edited by Highlander
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As one of the much maligned IPMS/USA FB moderators I want to bring a little reality to this conversation.

The IPMS FB group is a very small piece of modeling on Facebook. As mentioned above, the group has about 14,000 members.  For comparison "Doogs Models", a popular group run by a single individual has 19,000,  "Starship Modeler" is run by a mail-order company and has 95,000, and "I Love Scale Models" has 186,000 members.  There are easily 100s more groups all related to various aspects of the hobby. Modelers are not breaking down the door to join our group - they have lots of alternatives. 

The IPMS group is - by Facebook standards - heavily moderated. A moderator must explicitly approve every member the first time they try to post or comment, and we review their profile and their answers to our "security" questions to try to weed out scammers and trouble makers. We also approve (but not always read) every post before it appears. When the rare T-shirt seller or "middle aged woman looking for love" manages to post, that post is deleted, the person  who sent it is blocked, and it is never seen. Facebook does not let us see comments before they appear, and if they did we don't have the manpower to look at them all, but when scammy stuff slips through it will be reported and the person who made the comment blocked. When I say "we", I mostly mean me; a few other folks have become moderators but mostly lose interest.

Most of the posts are modeling related: photos of completed models, research photos of interesting subjects, how to questions. Commercial posts - mostly from small aftermarket/speciality companies - are allowed at a rate of 1/week.  Local and regional club shows can advertise as much as they want, and some do. A large fraction of the most active members do not seem to be IPMS members, although we have no way of knowing. Personal names are not unique, and FB makes has no requirement that you use your real name (and many people now use "handles" - like "Iron Wulf" or "Tex Modeler"). There are a fair number of members from foreign countries (there are IPMS societies around the world, and they are all welcome and often come to the US Nats).

Posts and discussions that are critical of IPMS but civil  are allowed. This is a very small fraction of the posts made, and is little different from the same discussions about IPMS that are held here on the IPMS forum. 
Because of this there seems to be  an assumption that the IPMS FB group is a hotbed of anti-IPMS conspirators; I get the impression some think the whole "flying tank" and "sharpie judging sheet" controversies were launched on the IPMS FB group. The truth is that both of those posts appeared first on other groups and social media, and I did my best to verify that they weren't hoaxes before approving those posts. I paid close attention to keep the discussion on those posts from raging out of control - deleting comments and suspending individuals. 

I know this policy is not popular with some in IPMS. As a moderator, I refuse to outright censor posts and comments only because they point out problems in the Society, mostly of our own doing. If the group is limited to putting a "happy face" on IPMS, FB members will recognize that the group is propaganda and ignore or discount it.  If the EBoard decides that's what they want, they will have to replace me.

What does IPMS gain from having the group? We get the IPMS name in front of modelers who may not even know it exists. They see contest announcements, can ask questions about modeling and IPMS, and can be encouraged to join a chapter, join the National organization, or come to a National Convention.  Post pandemic there was a lot of buzz around the Las Vegas and Omaha Nats on the FB group, and I have to think that contributed to the turnout at those events. When controversial issues do pop up, we (mostly me) can respond as the voice of reason, correcting misinformation and explaining why things work the way they do. There is also an opportunity for IPMS to "take the pulse" of the hobby by following and participating in the discussions on the group, although there doesn't seem to be much interest in that.

I have seen suggestions that this group is a thing of value that should be for "IPMS Members Only". Aside from the technical aspects of enforcing members only  (remember, we have no way of knowing who member "Iron Wulf" is, or if they are an IPMS member, or if they let their membership lapse), the IPMS group is little different from the many other groups available to everyone on FB. There is nothing special in the way of how-to information, and EBoard members rarely (ok, never) come to discuss issues. It doesn't cost anything but the moderators' time.

I've also seen suggestions that discussions of IPMS business should be done in a "Members Only" group to hide our "dirty laundry". Consider that with 5000 members anything discussed in such a "Members Only" group will immediately leak to social media, and nothing will stop the greater modeling community from trash-talking IPMS in all of the other FB groups and social media forums.

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Rats!  Good points, all.

There is an option for those who can't live with the nature and content of the FB page ... which is not to visit it.  I will not look at it for months, then look at it, see something that triggers me, and off I go.  Perhaps it is time for me to spend my time elsewhere.  Until next time.

Edited by Highlander
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2 hours ago, Bert said:

If you want to hurt IPMS/USA, a society of 55 years, this eboard couldn't to a better job.

To be fair, “this e-board”, that is just getting started is going to be a different one then the one from just a couple of weeks ago. So I for one will reserve my judgement on their actions for now.

The FB page has been around for many years, my concern about the FB page is IPMS members bashing IPMS in public. That and the idea that “it’s our society not theirs” as Mr. Cook says referring to the e-board, everyone on the e-board is a member, so YES it is their society too, just like everyone on the NCC, they are not some secret clandestine outside group, they are us! 

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2 hours ago, jcorley said:

Mr Cook is wrong about the '80% appointed EB'

Right now  the only "appointed" member is Noack. Soon there will be 3 replacement officers, but even then it'll only be 37.5% (3/8) 'appointed.

True enough James, but with the "appointment" of replacements for 2VP and Secretary, there will be 5 members of the Board that were not elected to their positions. The Treasurer (who does an excellent job for the society, I might add), is appointed. That means 63% of the Board will not have been elected to the post they hold.

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2 minutes ago, highflight said:

True enough James, but with the "appointment" of replacements for 2VP and Secretary, there will be 5 members of the Board that were not elected to their positions. The Treasurer (who does an excellent job for the society, I might add), is appointed. That means 63% of the Board will not have been elected to the post they hold.

Because my math skills are limited I need help here, there were three resignations from the board, the elected 1st VP moved into the Presidents position, which is how it was designed, which opened one position, then the 2nd VP and Secretary positions, which makes 3 positions to fill, one has been filled (J. Noack) which leaves 2 left to fill for a total of 3. Where does the 5 come from? 

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48 minutes ago, Highlander said:

There is an option for those who can't live with the nature and content of the FB page ... which is not to visit it.  I will not look at it for months, then look at it, see something that triggers me, and off I go.  Perhaps it is time for me to spend my time elsewhere.  Until next time.

That's how I feel about it, too, David. A shame people can't just stick to modelling, but there we go. 🙄

And I disagree, Don - there are far too many people who post on 'our'  FB page who are not members - you see it all the time "I'm not a member and won't be because blah, blah, blah..."  "It's disgraceful that IPMS blah, blah, blah.....: They really shouldn't have any say in how our Society is run. But if no effort is made to weed them out, that's what is seen and read. 🙄

Now, off to snooze IPMS/USA on FB.  🙄

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Well, no longer a foreign national.  Perhaps .... nefarious?

 

Liverpool and Wrexham both won their latest matches ... so you know where my heart is.;

Edited by Highlander
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Just to be clear, the C&Bl specify that the Treasurer is an appointed position. 

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1 hour ago, highflight said:

The Treasurer (who does an excellent job for the society, I might add), is appointed. That means 63% of the Board will not have been elected to the post they hold.

Does the EB not vote on this position anymore? I understand the original reason for this; I have been told we had financial issues partly brought on by a non-professional in the position.

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James, To my knowledge the Treasurer has never been an elected office and I go back almost 20 years with the Board. The reasons are continuity and professionalism. And FWIW, Mike Oberholtzer is one of the two best things that have ever happened to IPMS/USA, the other being Marie Van Schoonhoven the Office Manager. 

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Don makes many excellent points on our FB page, and social media in general. I've never had a problem with the dust-ups there, nor with the general "bashing" of IPMS on occasion. I also don't really worry about who's a current member or not. In fact, you can often tell by their posts whether they have any true knowledge of IPMS and our contests or judging as their ignorance is plain in their post.

What bothers me is the idea that our Eboard THOUGHT they needed to respond to what was posted there. Don used the correct idea.... it's a "sounding board" and ONE thing to consider, It is NOT a consensus of all modelers opinions and certainly not of all IPMS MEMBER'S opinions. 

The number of "elected" members on this new Eboard isn't germane to the immediate crisis at hand. SOLVING OUR NCC AND POTENTIAL JUDGING PROBLEMS ARE WHERE THE FOCUS SHOULD BE. I've already made my suggestion of what they should do to get the ball rolling. Once those problems are solved THEN, perhaps starting with the business meeting at Madison, we can begin discussions on whether to hold a special election or muddle through to the next election with the Eboard as is.

But for now, lets set our sights on the problems at hand and solve them, and hope that experienced people with the betterment of IPMSUSA, and not preserving the image and power of the Eboard and NCC, are willing to step up and work for that.

 

Gil :cool:

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2 hours ago, ghodges said:

Don makes many excellent points on our FB page, and social media in general. I've never had a problem with the dust-ups there, nor with the general "bashing" of IPMS on occasion. I also don't really worry about who's a current member or not. In fact, you can often tell by their posts whether they have any true knowledge of IPMS and our contests or judging as their ignorance is plain in their post.

What bothers me is the idea that our Eboard THOUGHT they needed to respond to what was posted there. Don used the correct idea.... it's a "sounding board" and ONE thing to consider, It is NOT a consensus of all modelers opinions and certainly not of all IPMS MEMBER'S opinions. 

Don does make good points, and I don’t blame him as the (lone?) moderator for unruly rude people on FB. If the “dust-ups” don’t devolve into name calling and insults, and sticks to an actual discussion of issues and facts I don’t really care either, unfortunately there is a group who apparently believes something else, and there are other group pages that are worse, so that brings me to Gil’s point.
 

As Don pointed out, if it’s next to impossible to really know or be sure who is who, and certainly not if they are IPMS members or not, we can, due to the number of page followers, even if smaller then other groups, be confident that actual IPMS members are no more then 1/3, and probably a lot less. I’m with Gil on this, the FB page, or any other FB pages should never be used to judge IPMS members stance and/or position on any IPMS issues, even if the posters are IPMS members. It MIGHT give an idea as to trends and/or give ideas about how the modeling community is thinking, but my opinion and advice to the e-board, and anyone else, is be aware of it but never react to it.

And I agree, our main focus right now is Madison, and I think there are good people working on making sure the convention and contest are a success.

Edited by CaptainAhab
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Just made it through the discussion and have some questions.  If most of the people on the Facebook page are not members,  how do we get them to be members instead of trying to remove them?  Why are they not members? If a large portion of members don't attend nationals,  how do we get them to join?  Why do they not attend? 

Why are we trying to exclude people than listen to them? 

It appears like growing membership is not a concern.  

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30 minutes ago, WasatchModeler said:

Just made it through the discussion and have some questions.  If most of the people on the Facebook page are not members,  how do we get them to be members instead of trying to remove them?  Why are they not members? If a large portion of members don't attend nationals,  how do we get them to join?  Why do they not attend? 

Why are we trying to exclude people than listen to them? 

It appears like growing membership is not a concern.  

I would assume non members and members see the cost of attending a National Convention somewhat  prohibitive unless it's in their backyard. 

Facebook is easy access to interact with the modeling community and most modelers are of the casual type. 

Most casual modelers aren't interested in a cut throat type of contest. IPMS is not available to many casual modelers. Most can build models without a organized society. 

IMPS offers nothing but a magazine that is dated by the time that's its printed. In this day and age the internet is for better or worse is a source of real time information. 

Most casual modelers could care less spending money other than spending money for their next kit and building it the way they like.

As for the IPMS webpage on facebook it's a outlet to speak about the hobby and show their models.

IPMS should leave the site as is but IPMS should understand that everyone has a opinion some valid and some not so much. It's  electronic either. Some good points and some very horrible but it serves as a window to what is happening in the modeling world.

As to getting non members to join the society that's like flipping a coin. 50-50 at best. Perceived value is in the eyes of the beholder. A magazine and a union of like minded people seems to me a very hard sell to a individual solitary hobby.

I think in the future the leadership of this organization will have to incentivize the casual modeler in some form to increase membership. I'd be damned if I  know what that would be. I have ideas but I'll keep those to myself for the time being until this current situation resolves itself.

Ron Thorne Jr. 

Head Bottle Washer. 

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