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Stalking The Truth

Stalking The Truth

April 04, 2010

NCGenWeb Part 5/5


From: xxxxx
To: mary.emaline.white@gmail.com
Sent: 3/31/2010
Subject: Re: NCGenWeb

Mary,

I thought you might need this for your revelations of NCGenWeb. I have left NCGenWeb because of all the BS that has been going on. I don't like feeling like I've got to look over my shoulder before I upload a cemetery transcription because I might do it wrong. But that is what it had become. I asked Katherine POINT BLANK to give me a reason to stay -- she couldn't. I'd appreciate if you'd remove my name. Also, you will notice that she said there was more bylaws to approve and we needed to get it done quickly, but the next ones did NOT come up for discussion or vote in the nearly three weeks after than. How odd? The bylaws are no longer a priority, because they've forced out some.

xxxxx



From: xxxxx
To: Katherine Benbow
Subject: NCGenWeb
Date: March 8, 2010

I wanted to contact you offlist because I don't want to stir up any more. However, I do have some questions.

I have a problem with the statement that you didn't see this coming. In the last round of bylaws that we voted on, they were very much slanted to either remove someone or have someone new come in. I'm not talking about the change in length of SC term. I am talking about the fact that only the state coordinator has a set amount of time they can be on the board, no other position does. When I was asking questions, discussion was CLOSED so the vote could be done. My personal thought is that if you are going to limit the time an SC can be on the board, you also need to do the same for ALL positions, however, discussion was closed. Maybe others didn't see that, maybe they didn't really care and just want the bylaws finished, I don't know.

It looks to me like you (collectively, the board) knew there was a problem and instead of stating so, you just wanted to get to June so the problem might go away.

I am saying you, but I am not trying to point fingers. I mean you in the collective sense as in the board, not you personally, although you personally may have sensed something as well.

I am having a tough time associating the "Diane" that you say you have been dealing with the "Diane" who helped me learn html and really take on the xxxxx County site. It is no longer the same site I took over. I have changed quite a few things around and added tons of information. And Diane was there every step of the way. When I'd ask her opinion, she was always there. So, I am having a difficult time with connecting the two "Diane"s.

If you could find someway to reassure me, I would appreciate it. I needed to let someone know what I thought and saw and I hope that this will be taken in the way it was meant.

xxxxx



From: Katherine Benbow
To: xxxxx
Subject: Re: NCGenWeb
Date: March 8, 2010

xxxxx, I will be sending an email to the list today, to add a few comments that might be helpful to the CCs. And we're all busier than one-armed paper hangers recovering the sites that Diane stole or damaged.

I can understand that this whole situation has been startling, and unexpected to the CCs. It was not totally unexpected to us that she would resign. She has threatened to do so in the past, but she never did. What did surprise us was the level of insults that she hurled in her good-bye email -- which were full of all kinds of exaggerations, misinterpretations, etc. -- but also the amount of damage that she did, in clear violation of the guidelines and bylaws that she herself backed. She fired CCs for small infractions, but then did what she do? Yes, that was indeed unexpected. We knew she was unhappy with us as her board, because we didn't rubber-stamp things she wanted to do. But we were unhappy with her, too. We are not saying that all was wonderful in the Land of Oz, and then "wham." We all told the truth, whether or not someone can believe it. What else should we do?

We have found numerous indications that she has been planning her exit for over a month or more. She has also invaded and destroyed files on sites which were not hers at anytime recently, and she seemed to target Jo's sites more than anyone else's. She also took information on the CCs that was confidential and only available to the SC.

We struggled at first with how to square all of this with the public persona that Diane like to put forward. I liked her at first, myself, and thought that most of her intended changes sounded like good ideas. But, let me tell you, when she was opposed about the severity and character of those changes, she took on a different persona. She did not like hearing "no" or "please think this over". And her reactions were not pleasant and reasonable and open-minded. They were quite something else. We have literally dozens of emails in our email archives which you would swear came from a different Diane.

Actually, the bylaws are written so that everyone has a set length of term. That is not exclusive to the SC. If the language needs to be cleared up, or you have some questions regarding the way the wording is interpreted, then you should email Jo, or authorize me to share this email with the board, so that the ones who need to respond to that question can do so. I'm not an expert at that kind of thing, and don't want to be. I can assure you that we are not applying that rule only to the SC. There is no point in having elections if the term goes on forever. I know there is another set of bylaws almost ready to come out for discussion and a vote, and perhaps that is addressed in that set. I've been so busy with other issues that I haven't looked at that draft lately. And, frankly, all that stuff starts to sound the same to me after a while. I don't even understand my own insurance policies. I have to call my agent and ask, "What does this actually say?" Discussions weren't closed because you said something. They were closed because there were no further comments coming in, and it was time to move to a vote. The discussion time limits have been shorter for the bylaws for several reasons, including the fact that we want to finish with them. Election time is looming up on the horizon.

What some people are overlooking is the fact that, if the board had told you we didn't want to work with Diane anymore, what would you have done? Seriously? We didn't even have the bylaws in place yet to tell us what to do in that kind of situation. Think about it from our side, and what kind of mayhem would have broken out, with everyone fighting about that.

You and the others have a perfect right to ask questions. We have tried to be guarded because of two things: (1) Someone in NCGenWeb is sharing our list emails with Daryl, and they are being quoted on the internet in his attempts to undermine NCGenWeb. We know that for a fact, and we have suspicions as to who, but no proof yet. So we have to think in terms of the fact that what we say is not truly behind closed doors. I went far, far out on a limb yesterday, but I was tired of being suspected of something other than being careful. (2) We have seen evidence in the last few days that someone in NCGenWeb is also forwarding our emails to Diane. So, would you not want to try to be careful in that situation? We don't know at times who to trust, either. This is against the guidelines and the statement at the bottom of each NCGenWeb posting, so that person or those people just don't care about that.

Hopefully, this will answer some of your questions. I also belong to VAGenWeb, and I enjoy its tranquil and friendly atmosphere. That's what I want for NCGenWeb. But, unfortunately, we will have to go through the fire to get to that far side.

Diane will be working to undermine us and destroy our credibility. I would think that the type of email she sent on Friday would convince people to be open-minded. I'm hoping that people can do what's best for NCGenWeb. The problems are not going to go away in June. Daryl will still be out there, looking for opportunities to get into NCGenWeb. There will still be some people who don't agree on various things. Hopefully, things will be better. From a personal standpoint, yes, I'm looking forward to June, because I don't want to be in the hot seat anymore. I'm a worker bee, not someone who wants to be in the spotlight. I hate that, and I have to make myself write the emails I send to the list. And we have a family wedding coming up, and I'd much rather be thinking about that. Life's short.

Katherine Benbow




Sidebar -- NCGenWeb does not need Diane's help to destroy their credibility, they do a good enough job of that themselves. Daryl does not need to get into NCGenWeb, we now have more spy's in NCGenWeb than ever to help stomp out corruption by exposing it.

Mary White

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

During all this fiasco NCGenWeb has managed to insult and run off CC's who they thought were spys but who had nothing more in their intentions than to mind their own business, contribute to their county site(s), and help others. I am one former CC has no use for such hateful and vindictive people.

Anonymous said...

By reading all this, it seems the problems in NCGW are still in NCGW. How many vacant counties now? 23? 24? And then it appears there's the national board with an unhealthy preoccupation with secrecy, punishing members, trying to create more rules out of thin air, and carrying on business behind closed doors as more counties are going vacant. How many board members have quit in disgust so far? It appears USGW sadly is just a mere shadow of its once self and its just a matter of time before its nothing more than a fading memory unless a change for the better is made before practically no one is left in the project.

Anonymous said...

As older members are disappearing and quitting, new volunteers are not joining in sufficient numbers to make up for the loss. Just look at the counties up for adoption in some states - and how long those counties have been up for adoption. Look at the number of members holding and babysitting multiple counties. But who would want to join an organization cursed with control freaks? Look at the various project regional and national mail lists - dead for the most part - never more so. What is the board doing to recruit more members and making the organization attractive to potential new volunteers? It looks like they're too busy hiding and plotting - coming up with more rules and regulations, fretting over secrecy and how to punish those who break their sacred vow of silence.

Anonymous said...

What gets me is the number of members who are oblivious to the unfortunate deeds of a small number with "control issues." Such apathy has nourished such behavior over the years. But more and more are seeing first-hand what has been going on, and more and more are leaving, setting up shop elsewhere, either on their own or with another project. Volunteers are now learning they don't need USGW to have a county website. A "linking strategy" linking national project with state project, with local project is so 1980's anyway. Search engine technology now will bring visitors to a website, if content is there, regardless of an affiliation with a project. Bad behavior has driven off good volunteers - along with their valuable material, that "county babysitters" can not and will not replace. It's just amazing the powers that be, cannot comprehend, or simply refuse to see this. Good management is desperately needed in this project before more good volunteers are gone.