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RE: Please Read!!!!

From: Dana M
Sent on: Saturday, December 8, 2012 10:14 AM

I got this letter from a member. It brought up interesting points. Please see my responses in blue. I apologize in advance for my bluntness but I think 4 years of dealing with a myriad of complaints, criticisms, and redundant questions are reducing my desire to be tactful and seriously sapping my enthusiasm for running groups.

 

Wow, it seems you are extremely annoyed....

Annoyed, yes. Getting calls at 7am on a Saturday morning for a hike I am not leading is annoying. Having 15 out of 25 folks pull a no show is annoying. Fielding the same question about dogs every other hike is annoying. Having folks ask questions that are in the event description is annoying. Yes, I do get annoyed when I am donating over 400 hours a year to run my three Meetup groups and folks can’t take a minute to read an event description, Google the location of a hike, and/or change their RSVP. Leonard has put together this awesome Google map of trails, click here.

 

Extremely annoyed? No.

 

I didn't ask anything about the hike tomorrow but have inquired about past events so I apologize for any & all questions that were out of line and had already been covered in the posted details of the event on the meetup.com website.

I am not asking for apologizes.  Please, just take a moment and read before asking a question. Keep in mind that what is displayed on your phone is not the full description of the event. The full description is only viewable on line. More details are here - http://www.meetup.com/MemphisOutdoors/about/.

 

I had no idea that meetup.com required money.  How much? 

I pay $20 per month to run my three groups. That is extent of the money I pay out. However, my assistants and I spend hours a week scheduling and attending events, fielding questions, and giving directions. Here is a workup for my hours if I assume a minimum amount of hours per month and use minimum wage.

 

9 hours hike per month

4 hours per month answering questions and scheduling

13 minimum hours per month   

12 months in a year

156 hours per year

$7.25 minimum wage

$1,131 yearly wage if I was paid (156 hrs. at $7.25)

4 years I have been running this group

$4,524 on this group alone.

 

Of course, your request for donations certainly puts one on the spot per se. 

On the spot? It is not like I am passing the hat before the beginning of the hike.  I am simply letting people know that it costs me money to run the group and that we are volunteering our time.

 

Would it be possible to have a charge per event, that way the person could elect to go based on that fee.  I would never want to insult you by not giving anything or giving too small an amount...if you don't want to charge a fee, maybe have a minimum suggested amount per person for the event, of course accepting any greater amount...

Thanks for the suggestion. I do not want to have to deal with trying to collect money before every hike. That would be putting folks on the spot. I set up an optional annual fee of two dollars.

 

And finally, no cats are allowed on a hike, even if they are leash trained. After about the first ½ mile, you will end up with a very angry cat on your hands.

 

 

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