[Imc-dc-photo] disgruntled volunteer
nelliedog at verizon.net
Tue Oct 5 06:39:36 PDT 2004
My name is Allison Nugent. For the past several months, I've been trying UNSUCCESSFULLY to get involved in DC indymedia.
I am a photographer, and my intention in getting involved with this group was to find writers that wanted photography for their stories. I was hoping to work in a cooperative environment where I could produce media with other like-minded individuals. I would still love to do this, but there doesn't seem to be any outlet for me. I've tried attending the "general" meetings (although I was sick yesterday and couldn't go). The first meeting was composed of five people, myself included, two of which were new! The people attending did not seem to be actively involved in the editorial process or in maintainging the website! NO ONE who was actively involved in deciding what makes it onto the website attended the general meeting! I asked about the editorial committee, and I was told that they hold private meetings, not advertised to the general list. So, it appears to me that there is a small clique of people running this whole indymedia things, who hold private meetings, and never come to the "general" meetings. Why call it indymedia? Why not trademark it and name everyone on the editorial work group to the "board of directors" and dispense with this whole "media by the people" facade. Despite the indymedia mission statment, which says "The DC-IMC is a collaborative organization that welcomes people of diverse backgrounds and perspectives and encourages all volunteers to share their skills and knowledge" I've found it pretty damn hard to share my skills with anyone. Yes, I could upload photos, but that's not terribly informative without a story to go along with it, and I'm not a writer.
I'm sure you could answer this by saying that I should join the editorial work group. But I don't want to be an editor! I want to be available if anyone needs a photographer. My idea of indymedia was that general membership or the editorial work group would suggest stories or investigative pieces, and members could participate in those projects. The photo work group mailing list seems completely defunct. I posted several times expressing my interest in getting involved, and received a response about a month later. Every now and then I see a post to the photo work group, usually a new idealistic photographer wanting to get involved, but no one ever replies.
I'm sure this sounds bitchy and angry, but frankly, that's how I feel. It really makes me angry when I want to get involved and volunteer my time, but the group I'm trying to work with doesn't seem to want any help. This group has SO much potential, but without real cooperation, it's going to die. I'd still love to work with a writer to create news items - feel free to contact me. And if anyone knows any other groups in the area who would actually like to work with a photographer, please let me know or pass on my name.
allison at amp-photo.net
More information about the Imc-dc-photo