“Good morning, we do not wish to be associated with Contact Cadets or Contact magazine. Please stop copying material from our Facebook. Also please delete recently copied material. Thanks in advance.”
This was the substance of a private message I received on the CONTACT Cadets Facebook page on 3 April.
This kind of attitude upsets me a lot.
So much so, this poor, unsuspecting man copped both barrels in my reply – and so much so, here I am making the private message and reply public (albeit with the courtesy of anonymity).
I am not inclined to comply with your demand – and, quite frankly, it makes me madder than hell that you ask it of me – and misrepresent the true nature of my interaction with your unit. I did not ‘copy’ your information nor did I ‘associate’ CONTACT with your unit.
May I point out that every post you make on Facebook has a ‘Share’ button associated with it. That, by it’s very nature (supported by the security settings you wilfully chose (or negligently omitted to choose) is, by design, an INVITATION TO SHARE that information. And ‘Share’ it is all that I did. I did not ‘copy’ it or in any way seek to alter or distort your message.
May I remind you also that the information you have posted on Facebook is now in the public domain and is not in any way shape or form ‘private’. Once you post something to a publicly accessible forum you lose control of it – end of story. Anyone can do anything with it or to it (except as protected by copyright law etc). It just so happens that in my case my motives are pure. They are also supported, encouraged and welcomed by Defence.
May I further remind you of the Australian public’s right to know how their tax-payer dollars are being spent – and that those (xxxxxxx) did not come cheap.
May I further suggest that you reconsider your attitude on this matter, lest you find yourself in a media spotlight under the headline “Government agent attempts to gag Australian media”.
If you can cite some sound, legitimate, supportable reason why I should accede to your demand, I might reconsider.
But, in the mean time, I suggest you please consider the ridiculousness of your request in terms of you broadcasting information over a publicly viewable forum, and then ‘demanding’ that some elements of the viewing public (in this case a legitimate media outlet) ignore it.
I WILL NOT comply with your demand. In fact, I’m actually more inclined to report you to AAFC HQ for your unfounded, objectionable attitude towards someone who has been nothing but friendly and supportive of ADF Cadets for more than 12 years.
Be further forewarned that I may actually publish your demand (albeit giving you the courtesy of anonymity) as a footnote to my recent blog “Why do Cadets dis CONTACT?“
Was I too hard on this man?
Am I too precious about CONTACT’s relationship with Cadets?
Should I just drop/ignore Cadets altogether?
Or is this man’s attitude an anomaly? – Do cadets in general like CONTACT?
P.S. The response to my tirade was short and to the point (and almost made me feel contrite)…
I have asked you nicely to stop doing something, that is all. No demands, no sad and inappropriate threats as you have now made, just a simply request with please and thanks included. From the nastiness of your response we have your answer.
So I replied….
I’m sorry that you experienced the full force of my frustration around certain attitudes prevalent (but thankfully not widespread) in some Cadet circles. I’m happy to say to you that I retract any aspect of this that was levelled specifically at you personally – but I stand by my overall frustration. I acknowledge your please and thanks, but reserve the right to say ‘sorry, but no, I respectfully reject your request to cease supporting ‘XXX’ and the kids in it’.
I don’t know if you are aware, but I did actually use this exchange as the basis for a new blog on CONTACT, which has been shared on Facebook, but I was very careful not to identify you or your unit. This post is actually doing rather well in terms of drumming up support and encouragement for what I do – so I intend to leave it in place. Just so you know.
Sincerely Brian Hartigan, Managing Editor.
…and show me some love (or ‘Likes’).