In the “Ask Scarleteen” and “Emergencies and Crises” areas replies are asked to be limited to “staff and volunteers only”. Early on in my experience on this site I started to post a reply to one of these sections (prior to reading the fine print), and it seemed to me there was a second reminder before it let me post. I assumed that these threads were password protected.
I do see a few posts in which a well meaning individual posts an answer, but they are not staff or sanctioned volunteers. As a rule a moderator adds an answer for the original post and gently advises the person that these two sections are to be limited to staff and volunteer responses.
In these two sections nearly all questions are answered quite promptly (considering the volume of posts), and I was wondering how you handle the sheer number of posts that go to these sections, while trying to keep the answers coming from either moderator or other staff/volunteers.
I guess what I am wondering is about staffing. Do you staff the boards with a schedule, or is it more like our fire/rescue department in which any EMT person with a pager on and a car will respond to a rescue call? (It does work!)
I guess the follow up question would be how you sanction access to these areas, in terms of adding new volunteers?
Just curious, I have really enjoyed reading and posting on many of the other forum sections since discovering the site, but want to remain within the bounds of good taste and cooperative use.
Only the Ask ST section is pass-protected. As a rule, we only let moderators answer in E&C, but that's not pass-protected, so we just have to keep it as a general rule and occasionaly remind folks not to go there unless they're asking a question. I'm a little more trigger-happy than most mods when it comes to deleting things, so instead of warning folks, I usually just delete a reply, especially if it has potentially dangerous implications (bad advice and so forth).
Do we have a schedule? No. I have insane hours because I'm working at the DHS and going to school full time. I only come in late nights if I'm feeling particularly energetic. Daytime visits are rare for me -- I used to post much more when I had free time. The rest of us wander in when we can. If anyone gets an attitude with us for not answering their question within seconds of posting, we let them have an earful about what a lot of stuff we do in the real world that we can't be patrolling ST all the time. Seriously, there are a few ingrates here. But when we're on, I like to think we're pretty prompt.
As for new volunteers, that is entirely Miz S's discretion. Pretty much, if she likes what you say, she might drop you a line. But we can't guarantee that.
I have noticed that many of your replys are from the wee hours. I had a hunch it was because so much of your daytime hours are eaten up with other duties. I hope you get to sleep in occasionally!
well barbarosa - it seems to me you're pretty much a sexpert already forget the volunteer bit... and i think it is kind of cool because the site seems fairly female dominated (i don't know i'd guess 8:2 or something) so its quite nice, in a weird way, to have a more male perspective out there... like that post where you named your/someone's penis 'thor's mighty hammer' that made me laugh for ages and is never, ever something i would even have thought about!!!! anyway gotta sign off - going home tomorrow yeeaaahhh!
Posts: 139 | From: los angeles | Registered: Jul 2004
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Hey, there are a few guys in the volunteer ranks!
Truth be told though, in my experience, the ratio of male to female users here at the boards does tend to be unbalanced, with a great many of our users being female as opposed to male. Why that is, I do not know. I could speculate that since a great many of our new users are coming in search of information regarding reproductive choice options and things related to pregnancy risk. Women tend to share a greater burden of sexual risk, simply because by the virtue of being biologically male, we can't get pregnant.
And given that, there are a few topics that I really don't feel comfortable speaking out in, simply because I am male and, again by the sheer virtue of biology, I can't experience that topic first-hand, so my response would be very much in theory.
But, safer sex, healthy relationships, and being supportive of reproductive rights transcends gender, so it is nice to see when we've got another biological male out there who knows how to speak eloquently and isn't into passing on huge amounts of misinformation.
(And in regards to volunteer staff vs. general users -- and I know that Heather has mentioned this before -- it really doesn't matter what title happens to sit below your username. (Unless, of course, you're talking about the Emergencies and Crisis / Ask Scarleteen forums.) So long as you take the time to post information that is correct, and you stick within the bounds of the guidelines, we're happy to have you here. The pecking-order really isn't that big of a thing here, so long as your words are true and uphold the messages and ideals we hold here at Scarleteen.)
------------------ Tim, as in "Donate" Scarleteen Advocate
As well, a high female-to-male ratio in ANY branch of sex education (as oppposed to sexual entertainment), both in educators themselves and in those seeking education, is pretty much the norm everywhere, and always has been.
Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000
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