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ian
-9th January 2008, 14:35
Could we have a new section for personal club reviews (positive and negative).

This will allow people to make better informed club choices, make sure people don't end up in a duff club and lose interest in fencing and make sure clubs up their game if they are a bit rubbish.

regards

Ian

hokers
-9th January 2008, 15:28
http://skugg.files.wordpress.com/2007/06/can-of-worms.jpg

Most clubs are run not-for-profit, I can see people reacting badly to a few negative reviews. Let's keep the opinions out of the public domain, I'm sure there will be plenty of people who will happily offer an opinion in private?

KJK
-9th January 2008, 19:53
They are also run by volunteers who give up their precious time to make certain that there are clubs for people to fence in. Try getting people to volunteer to be a committee member at club, regional or what ever level--!!
So perhaps as the Native American Indian saying goes ' do not criticise a man until you have walked at least one week in his moccasins'

ian
-10th January 2008, 08:30
So your saying bad practise and poorly run clubs are ok because saying something negative might put off a few volunteers. Surely a good club will have the right to reply and refute and negative press.

You know it does work both ways a glowing report will increase members to well run clubs and as I said increase the standard to which clubs strive to hit.

How many clubs are run on a not-for-profit basis and how many are actually run for profit?

Saxon
-10th January 2008, 08:55
So your saying bad practise and poorly run clubs are ok because saying something negative might put off a few volunteers. Surely a good club will have the right to reply and refute and negative press.
Only if they have a presence on the Forum.


You know it does work both ways a glowing report will increase members to well run clubs and as I said increase the standard to which clubs strive to hit.
Again, only in the very limited sense of appealing to those who are in here, the vast majority of whom already have one or more clubs they attend.

Personally, I wouldn't be "striving" to hit a standard determined by some random who turned up expecting an individual lesson from our coach, didn't get one and left in a huff (this has happened). My standards are determined by our membership, who pay their subs, have full input into what we do and seem (as far as I can tell) to be happy with how we do things. Much more important for club officers to talk to the membership than to be towed along by the opinions of the self-selecting group that choose to post their opinions on a public forum.


How many clubs are run on a not-for-profit basis and how many are actually run for profit?
I would assume that the vast majority of clubs are run absolutely not-for-profit. Sure, some coaches have a club (or two) which supplement (or provide) their income, but many more clubs operate on a social level, using their income to hire the coach(es) and the venue, buy equipment, and so on. Not sure what this has to do with the original question, but there you go.

Saxon
-10th January 2008, 08:56
Oh, and welcome to the Forum
:)

ian
-10th January 2008, 09:24
Thanks for the welcome :)

I think your coming at it from a negative view point constructive critisism can be a good thing. One "randoms" duff review can easily be rebutted and if the club is good put into the proper context by members who are happy.

Bear in mind some clubs have a joining fee and it would be nice to hear glowing testimonials about a club before joining it. Rather than stumping up money up front and finding out that there is no class structure or the membership is ignored.

Have you not undertaken research on the internet before about products and services? It's always nice to use other people experinces to make an informed choice.

Saxon
-10th January 2008, 10:24
Thanks for the welcome :)

I think your coming at it from a negative view point constructive critisism can be a good thing. One "randoms" duff review can easily be rebutted and if the club is good put into the proper context by members who are happy.

Bear in mind some clubs have a joining fee and it would be nice to hear glowing testimonials about a club before joining it. Rather than stumping up money up front and finding out that there is no class structure or the membership is ignored.

Have you not undertaken research on the internet before about products and services? It's always nice to use other people experinces to make an informed choice.

You could do some proper research. You know, actually visit a club and try talking to the members? Most clubs are happy to welcome visitors, and will gladly explain their policies and fees if you ask them.

Some inhabitants of this forum seem to have the impression that they are the sole representatives of fencing on the planet, and that nothing important in fencing happens unless it's discussed on here. Or rather, nothing that happens in fencing is important until it is discussed on here. To those - get over yourselves.

I repeat my initial statement - you cannot assume that a club will have representation on the forum, and therefore it is utterly incorrect to say that negative comments are fair as they can be corrected.

Further, I would take very badly indeed if someone turned up at our club, fenced (or otherwise), then without saying anything to any of the officers or members, came away and flamed us on here. Cowardly and discourteous, and I suggest it would be irresponsible to provide such a facility.

Andrew L
-10th January 2008, 11:08
What is being proposed by Ian is little different from the range of sites that allow consumers to feedback on Holidays, Technology and the like.

One would be somewhat na´ve to base your selection of any product or service on the opinion of a single, unknown individual but a collection of perspectives from members and visitors to a club would give a level of colour that could influence where you try and in which order.

This might be particular relevant for those who might have to travel a significant distance to get to a club or find themselves working away for an extended period and might want to keep their hand and eye in.

There is a possibility that some might get petty in their posts but something tells me that other members of the forum would be quick to pick up on unjustified/unreasonable observations in a thread/section like that as they appear to be in other threads. :)

Just my inexperienced pennyworth.

Red
-10th January 2008, 14:11
...
This might be particular relevant for those who might have to travel a significant distance to get to a club or find themselves working away for an extended period and might want to keep their hand and eye in.
...

Most people on here that do want to know such things tend to ask. There's be a fair number of 'I've been forced to work in <city/county/region> for a few weeks, and need somewhere to fence <weapon>. Can anybody recommend anywhere? I've heard of Club X and Club Y, which would be a better use of my time while I'm down there?' type posts floating around.

fencingmaster
-10th January 2008, 17:06
critisism

it's "criticism" - just being constructive!

Baldric
-10th January 2008, 23:19
I sometimes read internet reviews of products or services, but they are of limited use, and you learn to read between the lines.

They are best for techie products, where exact details may be complex and numerous - ie "I bought the new whizz-bang 2000 gizmo, and was disappointed that it lacked a sooper-dooper mega-bang upgrade port." If that is a feature that is important to you, then its useful to know it isn't included, and might affect your decision.

On more subjective matters, like the quality of a hotel, (or a fencing club) the problem is that people are usually only driven to write an online review if they come from one extreme or other - ie big fans, or severe critics. Often this is driven from a single experience, and is not particularly useful to others.

If a honeymooning couple choose to book a business hotel for their once-in-a-lifetime experience, they are likely to find it soulless and uninspiring. If a businessman booked into the honeymoon suite, he won't appreciate the 4 poster bed and 2 person jacuzzi, if there isn't internet access and a trouser press.

Fencing clubs are similar. I know that several people have left Jnr's club because they found the personal style of the coach abrasive and demanding. She finds that approach to be highly motivational, as do many others. If you don't have competitive aspirations, its probably not the right club for you. It would be a boring world if we all wanted the same experiences, and reacted the same way to them.

Bearing in mind that Leon Paul (who sponsor the forum) depend on the goodwill of fencing clubs for a large part of their income, I would be very surprised if they encouraged this idea. They would be on to a hiding to nothing!

Baldric

Penfold
-11th January 2008, 11:35
indeed a can of worms...

I dont know of any clubs that actually are run to make money! certainly at my club we aim to break even at the end of the year and sometimes that even happens!!

clubs are run (as far as I can tell) by people who give up their time to do this. not many are actually paid. clubs are run for the members and there are many clubs with many different views about how a club should be run. given this, I think it would very hard to give a balanced view of any one club and say whether it is good or not. The club may not meet your needs as a fencer because of a variety of reasons, which may result in a bad review.. would that be fair?

other fencers at your club probably visit other clubs.. easiest thing is to ask for opinions or better still, go along and see for yourself. If you dont like the club, then dont go!

gbm
-13th January 2008, 17:56
Cardiff Uni Fencing Club exists firstly to support fencing for students of Cardiff University, but secondly to spend as much of the AU's budget as possible doing it ;)