scouts-l Mail Archive for February of 2000: Re: Scouter Magazine
MAJ) Mike Walton (settummanque, the blackeagle (blkeagle@USSCOUTS.ORG
Thu Feb 18 1993 - 10:43:10 CST
There are two issues here; please allow me to explain at least one of them
as best as I can:
Neal Kostanski incorrectly replied:
>You ask where is your Scouter magazine? Ask your local council office if it has
>your charter entered into the new national computer system yet.
Two issues. Let me address the charter issue first. As many Scouters are
aware, the unit charters have been converted for usage in the new Scoutnet
registration and management system. The transition, as observed by Neal and
other Scouters, has not always gone as smoothly as possible.
SCOUTING (which is the official magazine for adults and parents registered
in the BSA; it comes to them as part of their $7 annual registration fee)
and Boys' Life (which is the official magazine for youth members registered
in Cub Scouting and Boy Scouting/Varsity Scouting in the BSA; it comes to
them SEPARATELY upon the payment by the youth, parents, and/or unit for a
SEPARATE fee and is NOT tied to the annual registration fee) both use the
BSA's registration database to address the labels and to pin-point mailing.
If your address is 12345 West Main Street, Anytown, AA on the charter last
year, that's where the magazine will go to until the end of the charter.
Address changes can be inputed in one of two ways: by sending a letter to
the REGISTRATION SERVICE, BSA at the National Office address and informing
them of your change of address (make sure that you place in the letter the
local Council name (and number if you have it available) and unit name and
number so that it doesn't take them too long to make the change on the
database; or by changing your address when the unit recharters
(it takes a little longer, but is just as effective.)
>If your unit has not been put into the new computer system then they do not
>know you exist. Please check this out in your council and let me know if I
am >correct or not. I would like to her from others about this issue and if
their charters >are ready or not.
Rechartering documents, Neal, are *normally printed* at least two months
PRIOR to the expiration date of the charter. For instance, for units whose
charter expire this month (Feburary), the rechartering documents were
prepared (or started to be prepared) back in December of last year. This is
to allow the unit's leadership two months to make the neccessary reviews,
changes, and to add additional youth and adults before returning the signed
documents through a Unit or District Commissioner to the local Council for
posting and forwarding. Additionally, another two months AFTER the
expiration date of the charter allows those units to "get their acts
together", particularily units that were "declared dead" but the District
and/or the chartering organization wants to give it another shot of life.
That's FOUR MONTHS. Still, we get units which cannot meet those guidelines,
and those are the units which the local Council have to "drop" and hope that
later that they can be reclaimed and picked up. Councils DO NOT LIKE to
They, and the professional staffs within those Councils, are "graded" on the
ability to get and retain units and youth from year to year. Many Councils
give those lapsing units a final 30-day period before they are removed from
"the books". Others feel that four months is time enough.
Okay, since I started this "string" in some way, here's the information on
SCOUTER (an independent Scouting magazine put together by Scouters for
volunteer and professional Scouters). SCOUTER is having a time of it
financially. Since I did not serve at a level whereby I was made aware of
their exact financial status, that's all I can really say...is that they are
having financial problems. I base this only on the fact that the magazine
hasn't been able to meet it's publication deadlines in a timely fashion, and
that significant parts of the operation (the tollfree number, the ordering
parts of the SCOUTER.COM website, and the Scouters' Compass portion which
previously posted daily and weekly summaries of this list (and a couple
others) has been "turned off" or not responded to. Additionally, some of
their employees have left the firm for other ventures.
As I wrote earlier, I do personally believe that the team managing SCOUTER
now will eventually put out the next issue of that magazine, but I can not
provide an estimate of how long from now that will occur.
As to the person who posted earlier asking me if "her money's flushed down
the drain", no, I don't think so. Either the team managing SCOUTER will
either produce the issues and send them to you, or they will refund your
monies and apologize for not being able to meet the production numbers as
advertized. A couple of Scouters have asked me about some of the patches
offered through the magazine, and I have yet to hear from Ed Henderson now
that he is no longer part of the magazine to know if he knows how they will
distribute those items now. I simply don't know....I've been expected some
of the patches myself.
As to the person posting me privately that "I shouldn't never trusted them
in the first place," I understand your feelings but disagree with your
assessment. If this was true, then the many other Scouters out there whom
have provided services for and to Scouters (to include my wife and myself)
would have not been able to help you support Scouting with CD-ROMs, patches,
binders and printed materials. It's just that in THIS case, the team that
was managing the effort, did not come forth and provide updates or interim
publications often enough to "help us along" until the printed publication
comes out again. Between issue 5 and 6, the team at SCOUTER put together a
PDF version of the latest issue, which did help things greatly until they
were able to print the next issue.
The team at SCOUTER I am sure are doing the very best they can with the
people and resources they have. I and a couple others have chosen not to
remain a part of that effort either on the editorial or on the management
side. I wish them well. As I've also stated earlier, American Scouting
needs an alternative to the official organs of the movement, something which
will do much of what we do here on Scouts-L and on those other -Ls out there
while at the same time, be edgy enough for those outside the Scouting
movement to read, markup and refer to as time goes onward.
Presently, we are waiting either for the national organization or the local
media to "define what Scouting is today", leaving the words and feelings of
the Scouter out on
"in the field", be he or she professional or volunteer.
One last comment: I had a Scouter to post to me and write that "he doesn't
care who I write for; so why should anyone else on the list care?" He's
right in a way...it doesn't matter who publishes the postings I make or the
articles I send outward. The most important part (to *me*) is that Scouters
read them and hopefully find something in them that they can relate to, can
share with others in and outside the program, and most of all, find
themselves in some way, in or outside the posting or article. I wanted to
make it clear that I am no longer a part of the *editorial staff* of
SCOUTER, which I've proudly held since they started up four years ago this
spring. I will continue, however, to make the articles I write available to
ANYONE asking for them, to include SCOUTER, as long as there is a suitable
Hopefully, both of these issues are explained enough to help out, Neal!
(MAJ) Mike L. Walton (settummanque, the blackeagle)
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