Was it Peter Hook or was it Anthony Wilson that wrote a book about “How NOT to run a club” about the Hacienda?
Well here’s the Totes Guide of How not to run
A Facebook group. Get yourself a glass of wine.
I run, I don’t run well. I run so that I can drink and eat. I am prone to being tubby because I am greedy. I occasionally post on this page about running and people would write in the comments “ooooooh you should join Run Mummy Run” so I did. I joined and it was a lovely supportive group of women who all ran.
Unfortunately I got my first post thrown off straight away because it contained quite a lot of swearing.
I’m not a lovely woman that runs, I’m a gin guzzling mother of three that swears a lot, has problems with anxiety, has been on happy pills, shouts a lot and has an addiction to buying clothes. I’m fun. I’m like everybody, I’m not perfect. I’m a grumpy bitch sometimes and I tell my husband to Fuck off regularly. We all have our crosses to bear. Despite all this I concluded that there needed to be a running group set up for like minded women that run, swear and booze a lot. I would be the woman that brought a special group like this to the masses.
I set up the group and I advertised it on this page. Within 2 or 3 days there were thousands of members because you could swear. My friend Kate turned it into a private group so that nobody’s colleagues or mother in laws would know about the boozing and profanity. We started off with posts being approved by an admin but within a couple of days we concluded that we couldn’t keep up.
As the days turned into weeks, the little group got bigger, three and then four and five thousand. We allowed men in which some of the other groups don’t do. Other groups are probably better run than ours. Other groups possibly had clear objectives about what their groups would do. Ours didn’t. We just made it up as we went along. Thinking about it, it’s fairly obvious that if there’s swearing on the page, we will never get any advertising but that’s ok because we don’t want advertising. Then the “men” thing. Men are fine but they inbox people and try and woo female members even when they are married. We started having to tell people off. I don’t like shit like that. I don’t like confrontation but we had to.
A few more weeks pass and we are almost up to date. We were in possession of a nice little running group. We had nice admins . Everybody was getting along nicely. All we had to do was vet the new members wishing to join. We put a few questions on to weed out the people that were obviously up to no good. We asked of potential new recruits their favoured booze and choice of swear word because we couldn’t work out why Indian boys, Arabic men or African men would want to join a predominantly female running group.
Everything was good or was it? We stalled at the 7,000 mark on members and I started to think that it might have had something to do with less and less running being talked about and more and more inane stuff. Some of it was hilarious and I can forgive that. Some of it was people getting to know each other, showing tattoos and talking about dating. Some of it was great but some of it was mind numbing. Because it’s a closed group, people were very free as they had privacy from families etc.
Last week after eight days of PMT myself and some admins went to Loch Ness to run a marathon. I mention the PMT because I’d kept looking at our running page over the previous week and thinking “what the fuck has that got to do with running, boozing or swearing?” As I scrolled through the posts, it seemed that we had about forty percent running and sixty percent other shit. Some of it made me cross Our page had lost its way. We sat on the sofa and made up some very innocuous rules.
They were as follows
Keep it on Subject
No advice about your cats bowel movements.
No selling shit.
In short I tried to use humour to sell our rules to our members.
We thought that we might lose some and we did. It just didn’t pan out how I expected.
The comments section of my post introducing rules was used to set up a splinter group to talk about other stuff by a couple of the regular contributors. This was handled rather callously by them. They didn’t ask if it was OK. They just did it whilst slagging off our admins but mainly me as I had written the rules. I was rather pissed off. I had no problem with people having another group because it saved ours but I had found it all rather distasteful. The disgruntled members all posted on the comments with glee “ooooooh I’ll message you the name of the new group in case I get blocked haha”
It was just a bit of a shit storm. My feelings were a bit hurt but nothing too bad but with the comments on the post, I got crosser and crosser. They were openly being rude about us. People that had joined the splinter group told us that most of the talk on the new group was just slagging off our admins.
I issued an ultimatum to say that if you wanted to be in the splinter group, then you certainly couldn’t be in ours.
I also wrote a post to say that it wasn’t a democracy, it was a dictatorship. That went down well, I can fucking tell you! Our disgruntled members had lost their sense of humours.
With hindsight our lack of rules and hoping that everybody could just get along nicely had created a power vacuum. Some of the members thought that it was their group. They’d been doing what they wanted for weeks and didn’t take well to being told what to do. We as admins had tried to be too nice. We’d let people do as the pleased for ages. People bitched and moaned. I’ve had people actually say that they didn’t know that it was a running group.
And then somebody let the dogs out. I mean the virtual dogs. The rent a troll brigade.
I can see that I have played my part in this. I can see how people got upset about rules and being asked to choose between groups. At no point was anything nasty said by me. I was upset by the rudeness of some people but I didn’t react apart from to say that as the other group were being unkind, people couldn’t be in both. What I can’t understand is trolling.
Somebody trolled me yesterday. She posted pictures of me that had been tampered with on my page. She left them there for hours and made some stupid comments. Lots of people saw it. Now I tend to sulk about things like this. It’s in my nature to let things lie but secretly simmer inside. So last night I thought “Fuck you troll” and posted a picture of her. She hadn’t been bothered by people seeing a picture of her earlier in the day so I concluded that she must be pretty proud of herself.
And then all hell broke loose.
I have been threatened, albeit in a veiled way but considering that she mentioned my children by name whilst threatening me, I’m taking it seriously. That’s going to the police.
I have been torn apart for my teeth, my dress sense, my being fatter and less attractive than my friends, my hair and other assorted things which I don’t give a fuck about. People think that the poor girl that I put a screen shot on is the one being wronged but she is a troll. She does this all the time. My friend told me that she’s reported her on another site. She was brought in by one of the people upset by being asked to leave a group. She may have been in the group, who knows but she was there to cause trouble. Over night she threatened other people and their businesses.
She isn’t the injured party. But she’s nothing to her other two friends who also trolled me. One of whom had the good sense to use a fake profile
And now they’ve started on my Facebook page properly, writing reviews stating that I’m a bully and so on.
So if you ever decide to start any sort of Facebook page, think again because a nice little running group has now ended up with fake reviews on my page, threats and some of the most vile abuse that I’ve ever seen because somebody decided to troll me for stating that there were rules on a running site.
Today a lady pulled over in a car to say “keep your chin up”. A runner stopped to say the same thing. Most people are so nice but I’ve decided to have a few days off from Facebook because I actually feel so anxious about it all that i feel unwell. It’s Bella’s and Teds Birthday and I’m probably going to let go of the RBR page as it all feels wrong now.
I don’t feel that I’ve done anything particularly wrong. I posted a picture of a nasty cow who had been rude to me on my page because she made me cross.
I tried to run a nice Running page.
It wasn’t as long as the Peter Hook one.
Fuck the trolls, fuck the daft cow who threatened me and happy birthday to my little shits.
Please could you do me a favour and write a positive review on my blog to try and bury the bad ones.
The trolls can do what they want because I’m not looking again tonight.
Chin chin Mofos. I can’t even have a glass of wine as Bella’s at gymnastics for three hours.