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Charitable FB group - drama


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#1 DirtyStreetPie

Posted 14 January 2020 - 07:46 AM

Hi everyone. I avoid Facebook groups because they sometimes attract melodrama. I learned my lesson when I was kicked out of a vegan group for nicely asking them to stop ridiculing an innocent omnivore (no great loss; their food pics ironically looked like roadkill, anyway!).

Recently, I softened my hard-line stance against FB groups by joining a charitable group. This group is a collective of people who have a certain skill, which is being used to assist in the aftermath of the bushfires. Awesome, I thought. Except...

The group 'announcements', which are posted regularly by admins, have something of an indelicate tone to them. I noticed this soon after I first joined. These announcements are tersely worded, and a bit harsh and undiplomatic, but I let it go because that's just how some people write. They probably didn't intend for their posts to come across that way, I figured.

Now, the group's good works have captured the hearts of thousands of people. Its membership has grown exponentially, and now includes people living overseas. There are now affiliated satellite groups in other countries. All in the space of a couple of weeks!

So it appears that cracks are beginning to appear. The tersely-worded announcements from the good old days (just two weeks ago, hehe) have become more dramatic and emotional, and are more like rants than announcements. There has apparently been some conflict with one of the satellite groups, and the admins of this main group have been unable to restrain themselves from dramatically drip-feeding details of this in the announcements.

It's setting off my 'weird dramatic group' radar. I'm already burnt because of the vegan group incident, but in addition, my husband used to volunteer for a particular organisation, and eventually decided to leave because it was a real-life soap opera (power plays, affairs, leadership tussles...). So, as I hope you can understand, I'm averse to unnecessary drama of any kind.

Here's what I'm wondering...

Should I stick it out and use this 'certain skill' of mine to help? Does drama at the admin level even matter to a pleb like me? Can I just ignore it, or will this drama affect the group's ability to do good work?

Thank you for any advice you can offer. :)

#2 Romeo Void

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:05 AM

Most groups have feathers ruffled as some stage or another, I just keep out of the politics and go about my business. If you're enjoying it, just ignore the politics etc.  I put it down to the unexpected stress the moderators face when things get out of control. I'm sure the moderator didn't expect the level of interest they're getting and are probably scrambling somewhat.
Having said that, I am part of a certain specialist group where the moderator is so OTT it cracks me up.  The rules are strict 'You must include this detail in your post. If someone has answered the question you are allowed to click 'like' but not comment further'.  I made the mistake of commenting 'I love those' and got suspended for 2 days as punishment.

#3 Mooples

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:16 AM

I would try and ignore it as much as possible. Turn notifications off and don’t read the groups wall unless you need to. Think of the people you are helping with your skill, they are your focus not the group admin. Only engage if you need to organise drop off or something. I’m taking a stab in the dark and guessing you might be sewing little animal pouches.

#4 babybug15

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:17 AM

I'm 90% sure I know which group you're talking about.

If it's a group that was primarily local (Australian) that has boomed in size in the last few weeks and the admins are trying to keep up with information so that people aren't wasting skills/time/resources on things that might not be useful then yes, I know what you mean about the posts. But I do think because it's grown so much, so quickly, that the admins have asked for some space to get things sorted. I think that's fine, given people are volunteering their time/money/effort. I understand what you mean about the wording. Some of it could be better, but I also think because it's only a handful of volunteer admins who are getting questions/comments from people constantly from all over, that trying to control some of that is probably a good idea for their own mental health and the practicality of the group.

As for vegan groups- I'm in a few cooking/recipe/food pic ones because I don't use dairy and frankly the vegan groups are far better than the "allergy friendly" ones for ideas. Stick to the food focused ones, rather than the drama ones.

As for facebook groups in general- definately some where admins are on power trips. There's a local one to me which should be a local area information sharing space but is run by jerks who encourage bullying/racism/climate change denial etc.

Edited by babybug15, 14 January 2020 - 08:19 AM.


#5 ~Jolly_F~

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:21 AM

I think I know the group too.

I have just turned off notifications and only check it out when I can be bothered.

I think it happens to a lot of groups, I just ignore it if I enjoy the content otherwise.

#6 blackcat20

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:30 AM

Yep, I'm in that group too....

I can kind of understand why theyre coming across a bit strong, the group is huge and the messages are getting a bit lost. Hopefully it all calms down a bit, in the mean time I'd just avoid reading too much of it.

#7 Ivy Ivy

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:35 AM

Affairs via online groups? Wow life can be better than a soap opera.

#8 PoolsideMasterchef

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:42 AM

Ignore the drama if you can and remember why you are there.

A lot of FB groups seem to have strict rules. I guess its because the mods are volunteers so they feel a lot of time pressure

Im not allowed to join the BLW ones because my son has had cereal (for his reflux) and only people who have only strictly done BLW are allowed to join. Never mind Ive had 3 mostly BLW kids I could help a lot of other parents with recipes and so forth.


My local area news group if you mention parking anywhere your post gets deleted even if its a discussion on a relevant issue, but but they let people post 100x over 'what was that helicopter for' type pointless posts. I posted a news item that a couple of local gyms were closing and it was deleted as it had the word 'parking' in the news item.

Edited by PoolsideMasterchef, 14 January 2020 - 08:45 AM.


#9 born.a.girl

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:43 AM

I've just left the facebook group 'One day closer to rain' which I thought would help me better understand the day to day trials of those living with drought in farming country.

Oh boy.  I had the idea that the farming community were generally on board with climate change and the need for action.  I've no doubt many of them are, but given the 'likes' to climate change denialists, they're certainly not the majority in this group.

The end for me, was someone quite rightly re-posting the CFA's request for no more donations of good. The vitriol, the cynicism was just too much.

I'm not suggesting these negative comments come from those in the country, but it certainly wasn't the sort of comment that I wanted to repeatedly expose myself to.

Bit sad, I did learn quite a lot from the individual farming people.

#10 born.a.girl

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:46 AM

Funnily enough, I'm actually an admin on a health group.  Just approved two comments which had been reported. The comments were made by one of the most knowledgeable people in the group - to the extent that we've just made her an admin.

People report comments because they don't like the answer.

Um, that's not how it works.


Fortunately it's a great group on the whole.

Edited by born.a.girl, 14 January 2020 - 08:46 AM.


#11 DirtyStreetPie

Posted 14 January 2020 - 08:53 AM

Thank you PPs. I think my aversion to drama is making me overreact a bit. Perhaps I am the one who should be less dramatic. :D

View PostMooples, on 14 January 2020 - 08:16 AM, said:

I’m taking a stab in the dark and guessing you might be sewing little animal pouches.

:ph34r:

I haven't started yet; I joined just as the inundation began, so I will wait until supply dwindles, which could take months, given the volumes being donated.

This is something I want to do long-term, after everyone has forgotten about the kangaroos and koalas. So, I will turn off notifications as suggested, and just check on the group every week or two.

Judging from your own anecdotes, this is just part and parcel of being in a Facebook group.

Thanks again. :)

#12 Hollycoddle

Posted 14 January 2020 - 09:12 AM

View PostRomeo Void, on 14 January 2020 - 08:05 AM, said:

Having said that, I am part of a certain specialist group where the moderator is so OTT it cracks me up.  The rules are strict 'You must include this detail in your post. If someone has answered the question you are allowed to click 'like' but not comment further'.  I made the mistake of commenting 'I love those' and got suspended for 2 days as punishment.

It's insane, isn't it?  Not long ago I was responsible for getting a page temporarily shut down by its admins because I commented on the fact that they didn't allow any indigenous-related posts (it was a historical locations page).  The admins' rationale was that the comments would get out of hand (appeared to be a lot of right-wing oldies on the page) and I get that but my comment was along the lines of this is just another example of the wiping out of indigenous history.  I get that admins have a job to do with moderating and it can be time consuming but why not just ban the people making racist comments?  The page is back up now, I've deleted social media but before I did I decided not to bother joining that page again.

Edited by Hollycoddle, 14 January 2020 - 09:13 AM.


#13 kitkatswing

Posted 14 January 2020 - 09:19 AM

Im on that page.

I just check in to see when donations are back on.

I have 17 hanging wallaby pouches ready to go. If they are not needed I have a friend in Rescue who will take them.

#14 steppy

Posted 14 January 2020 - 10:47 AM

I usually put Facebook groups on silent or leave them after a while. They always attract the bossy lecturing types who ALWAYS have to prove how much they know and the grandstanders who can't miss an opportunity to prove how kind/woke/amazing they are as people. They post more than anyone else and it always ends up being boring.

#15 TheGreenSheep

Posted 14 January 2020 - 11:15 AM

I’m on several FB group pages with a wide range of content. I continue to be amazed by the lack of tolerance and keyboard warriors who love a ding don’t over the smallest things, you couldn’t imagine the stuff people get hot over. Now I see it I just scroll on by.

You couldn’t pay me to admin these pages which are run by volunteers. Nope. Nah-uh. No way!

OP like the PPs have suggested, do your thing, ignore the rest. How lovely are you to be helping out!

#16 overlytired

Posted 14 January 2020 - 12:36 PM

View Postbabybug15, on 14 January 2020 - 08:17 AM, said:

(...)
Stick to the food focused ones, rather than the drama ones.
(...)

In October last year I joined a [cultural group] food FB group; it was horrific. "I can't believe you put tomatoes in your [food]. That's not [country's] cuisine, that's [neighbouring country's] cuisine". Nevermind borders have changed over the last few hundred years... I left that one to join another, more relaxed one. Less than a week in, Admin posts private messages between them and a member, publicly bans and ridicules them, for a completely unclear reason.

So, OP, all this to say: If you're volunteering and this is the best venue to do so, I'd try to stick it out. As PPs mentioned, you can unsubscribe from the news feed and just go to the page when you have time. That way you don't have an onslaught of messages when you log in.

If there are other means by which you can help, then I'd leave the FB group and look elsewhere.

#17 UniKitty

Posted 14 January 2020 - 01:23 PM

I'm in a travel group for a particular country and the Admin is hellbent on people using the search function instead of posting questions.
Except that her multiple daily reminders about searching so not 'clogging feeds' is actually clogging my feed more!!

So irritating and offputting for new members...

#18 FuzzyChocolateToes

Posted 14 January 2020 - 02:13 PM

Love this OP:

Quote

I'm already burnt because of the vegan group incident, 

FB dynamics are weird. People seem prepared to write stuff down that they wouldn't say out loud.

#19 sahmie

Posted 14 January 2020 - 02:20 PM

I’ve left the two sewing groups I was a part of. I was getting unusually annoyed at the amount of people spending money to make products, when really, the products are a secondary need to...money!
It’s one thing to use what you have, and make a contribution that way. It is (or should be) appreciated. We do what we can. But if you’ve got to spend money to make the contribution, seriously just donate the money. It’s obviously more about you feeling good about yourself than making any real contribution.

I read a hilarious post in a US free speech group too, which gave me a big laugh, and hopefully put things into perspective for some.

#20 steppy

Posted 14 January 2020 - 02:30 PM

There's this keto group that is so completely weird. Like really weirdly overbearing.

Some people left the group and posted elsewhere about how completely overbearing the admins and mods were and they posted this big overbearing, controlling rant trying to control not only perceptions inside the group but ex members and reactions outside the group. Like, how dare anyone state we are overbearing and controlling, we have to control that.

Nobody here thinks we are controlling and overbearing, DO THEY???? :rant:

Everyone is like :whistle: except for the sycophants (another popular facebook group role) who start reassuring the admins for posts and posts that they are the best, the kindest, they are only looking out for our souls because we are poor lambs who may be led astray.

I had to put the group on silent but I do still go there for recipes.

#21 Chocolate Addict

Posted 14 January 2020 - 03:55 PM

I know the group you are talking about, not in it but was reading some comments last night.

No one seems to care that most organisations have said they don't need more donations at the moment.
I think if you are wanting to do something,do the ones that less people would tackle. Everyone make the pouches cos they were easy and quick.

I am in a couple of sewing business groups and had to block one lady due to her almost daily inane questions. They were so so stupid, you had to wonder how she got by in life. I replied with useful information a few times but the questions kept coming. I started getting told my tone was aggressive lol It most certainly wasn't but I was over deal with this woman so blocked her. :p

I always turn off the notifications and stop 'following' pages so they don't clog up my newsfeed.

#22 Lime-Polka-Dot

Posted 14 January 2020 - 05:02 PM

View PostPoolsideMasterchef, on 14 January 2020 - 08:42 AM, said:

My local area news group if you mention parking anywhere your post gets deleted even if its a discussion on a relevant issue, but but they let people post 100x over 'what was that helicopter for' type pointless posts. I posted a news item that a couple of local gyms were closing and it was deleted as it had the word 'parking' in the news item.

Local community groups are some of the worst places on Facebook. The amount of trolling and outright nastiness is absolutely ridiculous. As well as the reptitive posts: Why is there a helicopter/ I saw a kangaroo on x road just now watch out for it etc. Even something as simple as someone saying they enjoyed their experience at a local coffee shop recently turned into a rude exchange of comments between people.

#23 DirtyStreetPie

Posted 14 January 2020 - 06:10 PM

View PostChocolate Addict, on 14 January 2020 - 03:55 PM, said:

No one seems to care that most organisations have said they don't need more donations at the moment.
I think if you are wanting to do something,do the ones that less people would tackle. Everyone make the pouches cos they were easy and quick.

I think one of the issues is that the announcement asking people to pause crafting hasn't been pinned to the top of the page. So people don't find it unless they go looking for it (and how would they know to, if they aren't savvy like me?). Also, rather than create a new announcement, they've updated one from early January - and again, I don't imagine people checking week-old posts just to see if they've been edited.

I guess, as a person whose career involves explaining things to inattentive teenagers and repeating instructions multiple times, I'd be idiot-proofing the dissemination of information as much as possible lol.

I haven't sewn anything yet, just watching for future opportunities. I had no idea this kind of work existed, and I'm so glad it does.

#24 Hollycoddle

Posted 14 January 2020 - 07:26 PM

View PostLime-Polka-Dot, on 14 January 2020 - 05:02 PM, said:



Local community groups are some of the worst places on Facebook. The amount of trolling and outright nastiness is absolutely ridiculous.

In the one for my hometown this one man keeps posting pics of his wife who looks like she's in a semi-vegetative state. In hospital, at home, giving updates on her condition and ranting about the hospital and carers. I have seen people in the comments advise him to put this stuff on his personal page and not on the noticeboard for everyone in town to see. Some time ago I went a step further and sent a PM to the admin telling them the posts were making me uncomfortable and that I had concerns that this woman's dignity was being compromised. I got no response and the posts continue to appear.

#25 RynandStompy

Posted 14 January 2020 - 10:18 PM

Facebook groups can be tough, toxic and draining sometimes. Turning notifications off for your own state of mind is very useful.

I think there definitely is a keyboard warrier attractant for some people. Both in joining and for a small few who basically seem to want kudos for adminning a large group but for the greater good of all should be kept well away.

I recall last year joining one of those pay it forward donation groups and dropping out due to disliking the admin posts ramping up drama on how they felt let down by group members - and some odd  comments posted on items by disgruntled members who accused the admins of selling donations for personal use.

Our local good karma type group is so far ok (albeit  a bit prone for a couple of members to post photos of 2-3 washed empty food jars to ask if anyone wants for craft projects so they can be reused and not recycled.. but their intentions are good).

I keep reminding myself that even the previous local groups I used to be on for buy/sell/swap were nothing like this NZ regional one, which last year evolved into the worst excesses and stereotypes for FB groups.

https://i.stuff.co.n...med-on-facebook

Edited to fix link and spaces

Edited by RynandStompy, 14 January 2020 - 10:41 PM.





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