March 24, 2009

Frankenstein


I've had my share of mistakes, but there has been one mistake that has come to bite me in the @$$.

When the a certain forums site was launched a few weeks ago, I welcomed it with open arms. I saw its potential of being an avenue of intelligent and meaningful discussions among AIM stakeholders, particularly the students. A few weeks has passed and that site has accomplished none of what I thought it would do. Instead, we saw people posting crass criticisms like crazy, discussions focusing on "who's doing who," and doing very, very little to create a positive change.

The moderators eventually saw the lack of responsibility in the postings of the message board, and disabled anonymous posting. The quality improved a bit, but the general atmosphere of that website still remained-- a raw environment filled with character assassinations.

What was my mistake in what I've mentioned? I grossly overestimated the benefits of that forums site and underestimated its negative effects. And now, that mistake is turning into a monster right before me.

In the past couple of weeks, strong disapproval of that forums site was expressed by faculty, students, alumni, and even staff. The worst part is that a significant portion of them think that I was the one who initiated that forums site. People think that this blog, The AIM Blogger, is the originator of that forums site.

I'd like to make it clear that I am not connected to the creators of that website, whose identities up to this point in time is unknown to me. (For proper disclosure, I served briefly as a consultant for them when they asked for my help, but I have left that post.)

I sent a message to the creators of that website about my plight, and I requested them to change the name of their site so that I would be spared from the backlash. But this is what I got from them:
Hi Regnard,

We have discussed your request among the board and are sorry to say that we cannot accommodate your request. The AIM Bloggers Forum was conceptualized under the pretense that everyone can become bloggers through our forum. Our forum aims to empower all AIM stakeholders to become bloggers without the need to setup their own blog.

In addition to this, our teams have already started producing paraphernalia such as stickers, posters and shirts with the AIM Bloggers Forum brand on it. The forum is the offshoot of many more things to come and changing our branding at this point in time would be detrimental to the brand equity and strategies we have mapped out.

The AIM Bloggers can however post in the FAQs portion of our forum that you are not one of the founders of this forum if you are amenable to this.

We hope you can understand where we are coming from.

Thank you,

AIM Bloggers
There you have it: My equivalent of Frankenstein's Monster.

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