Atlanta Vampire Alliance [AVA]

Vampires & Vampirism => Vampire Community & Subcultural Discussion => Topic started by: Merticus on March 27, 2008, 02:49:50 pm



Title: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Merticus on March 27, 2008, 02:49:50 pm
The following is a question that was posed for group discussion at TWILIGHT II in Atlanta, GA this past March 2008.  I'd like to continue the discussion here on the AVA forum to gather everyone's opinion and input on the particular subject.  Please answer the question (all parts) below and offer your perspective!


Dealing With Negative Publicity Resulting From False, Misleading, Or Badly Portrayed Representations?

Discussion:
  How can the community respond when individuals who claim to be "vampires" act in socially inappropriate ways?  The vampire community is loosely affiliated, rather than organized, with no central authority or modes of censure, no borders, and no shared ideology. We can’t control who decides to claim membership – even the undignified, careless, delusional, or dangerous who happen through our community aren’t immediately turned away, even if they aren’t accepted.  How do we draw lines that will keep our community safe, especially when community participation is often anonymous (Internet message boards) and semi-public (club events, Goth nights, Meetup groups, etc).  And how do we deal with the media and social fallout when such “fringe” members or non-members have had real contact with our community, however brief or unfriendly?


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: sandmanbrian777 on May 18, 2008, 03:16:55 pm
Greetings Merticus and fellow list memebers :

Intersting questions of both a theoretical and practical importance. These areas of infiltration, built in safeguards, counter propaganda, investigations  and levels of awareness  are areas an established community has to address  and be prepared for.  Below I have listed some of my, somewhat, subjective answers.


How can the community respond when individuals who claim to be "vampires" act in socially inappropriate ways?
**********The problem of using the same brush to paint everyone is an age old question.  Pretenders with hidden agendas
try to gain an air of authority by adpoting the coloration of the community.  So the less shared of the communities inner culture,
the less information the charlatan has to convince others with.  These type of imposters sometimes have years of experience with confidence games and have become quite skilled at passing themselves off.  For me I am friendly but wait to see how  long a new member lasts.  In the past we had others come out for a couple of events only.  If truly interested  the new one has a hum of energy. 
Perhaps the question is one of how long does it take to spot and counteract the threat.  Some sort of Cover and Deception could be run to give the person bogus but convincing info for them to use.  Running a counter con game. 

How do we draw lines that will keep our community safe, especially when community participation is often anonymous (Internet message boards) and semi-public (club events, Goth nights, Meetup groups, etc).
***********Listen to your inner voice.  There is a certain type who will troll cyber space for exploitation.  They have been around since the dawn of time.  When exploitation is taking place it feels like something is wrong, and hard to put a finger on.
Too many specific and untoward questions are asked prematurely.   

And how do we deal with the media and social fallout when such “fringe” members or non-members have had real contact with our community, however brief or unfriendly?
**********Yes they do go about "Sheep Dipping" to have a false front to show others how much they know.  A damage limiting report can made beforehand just in case the person(s) decide to behave in a publicly untoward way.  At the minimum
other groups can be informed of events and be able to recognize repeat offenders. They do travel in circles and parasite off others in the community.  Yes we do have to be careful of the slippery slope of justice and private intelligence information files.


Brian...............................................V""V.................
***************************************************




Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Etheros Twilight on October 31, 2008, 06:53:54 pm
Meh.....think  about it....we have presidents and politicians who are these days debating how christian they are and we follow the archtype of a race that has a burning aversion to anything holy....hmmmm......we really have our work cut out for us.....lol...

As far as i go....im guilty of that fault...but not because im a vampire...its the demonic energies that dont deal so friendly with "holy" energies....but even i am not "burnt" by it......so i guess its a matter of information...the more we inform the world of who we are and what we do, the more they will come to realise, "hey, these guys arnt a bunch of bloodsucking satanists....theyre actualy normal people that follow a diffrent way of life...people dont understand the middle east culture....and they wonder why, as one marine i talked with at HHN last weekend put it, "some of the iraqis will be your friend for the entire time you are around them, but if you so much as look at their daughter the wrong way and they will pop up with an AK or something to kill you".....we send our troops over there without understanding of the culture...historicly speaking.....the culture supports that adultery even by thought is a crime. i dont think i need to tell you how they would punish it either.....

But....luckily....we dont have that kinda cultural wall between us and the mainstream....we just have the stigma of bram stoker......=P


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: AyraGrace on October 31, 2008, 08:19:28 pm
Okay here goes a very touchy subject. We as the vampire society are trying so hard to not necessary prove or to be accepted (to be honest why should we care what others thing of who we are) but to be as scene in society eyes as normal. We have no govern body to answer to only laws of the land. So if a vampire goes astray does something inappropriate, what do we do, turn our backs and say "they are not with us" or do we say we know what they did is wrong and they will be corrected. We could educate as many people that we can vampire or not of a way of life thats just different. We have to keep trying to make a difference to keep educating to keep our vampire way of life sacred.I do not think we can ever stop educating and trying to build a community.I guess what I am saying is there is good eggs and bad eggs we have to keep educating and we will have a few good eggs and maybe some bad eggs will learn somethings and be good eggs. Sorry maybe bad analogy but you know what I mean.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Etheros Twilight on November 02, 2008, 11:09:16 pm
Mmmmm....omelet....=p


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: de libre on February 21, 2009, 10:47:10 pm
Discussion:  How can the community respond when individuals who claim to be "vampires" act in socially inappropriate ways?  The vampire community is loosely affiliated, rather than organized, with no central authority or modes of censure, no borders, and no shared ideology. We can’t control who decides to claim membership – even the undignified, careless, delusional, or dangerous who happen through our community aren’t immediately turned away, even if they aren’t accepted.  How do we draw lines that will keep our community safe, especially when community participation is often anonymous (Internet message boards) and semi-public (club events, Goth nights, Meetup groups, etc).  And how do we deal with the media and social fallout when such “fringe” members or non-members have had real contact with our community, however brief or unfriendly?

The best thing to do is ignore. If they are really acting nuts let the police deal with them. I certainly don't like some of the posers/vampires that act inappropriate, but that doesn't mean I can really do anything about it. I can confront them and talk rationally with them or again ignore, and if need be get them some psychiatric help.  There are crazy people galore you can't really do much except proceed with caution and always look for warning signs of the mentally ill.

How do we deal with the media? Best thing to do is ignore the media, hell I don't even watch TV mainly because their is nothing good on. The media (news) does a wonderful job of playing the same dam thing straight for days...
If people believe everything they see on TV, well then they have more problems on their own...sadly enough some people do -.-
In all honesty we really aren't going to get anywhere on talk shows, unless one of our own was to create their own show, without any BSDM or anything like that. But no one would want to watch it because it would be so boring. So, I think we should bore everyone to death :P


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Lucia on March 27, 2009, 02:15:49 pm
Let's face it . . . according to the general public even when vampires are "good"  they're "bad".  I don't think it is in the general human condition to accept that what we do to gain sustenance is "ok".  These taboos are much older and more embedded in our psyches than modern news programs or the latest bestseller.  I certainly do not mean to be a pessimist, but I hide behind a mask everyday for a reason.  Most people cannot fathom or are even aware that we truly exist.

As de libre stated on this thread . . . we need to let the laws in place deal with those who choose to break the law.  If the law is broken in the name of vampirism then we need to remain vigilant and through our own actions illustrate that not all vampires are insane, blood-sucking fiends.  In fact, most are not.  We need to show that we are just as capable at contributing to the community in a positive way as anyone else.  It would be even better if we could do that AND at the same time let everyone know who we are.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Removed on May 07, 2009, 04:33:54 pm
This is a subject I have been thinking on ever since I read the transcript that Merticus posted a few days ago.

At what point do we go "too far" with our conviction of what is and is not? We sit here and tell people that we are in no position to tell them who or what they are, and we have many resources to back up such claims, but when we enforce what is or cannot be, then aren't we failing at the conviction we chose to not relent?

More importantly, it is something I ask myself every day to keep my arrogance in check; "Who exactly do you think you are?"

Do you honestly think any such perversion has absolutely anything to do with vampirism?

This is why I loathe the label "Vampire" because it assumes the position that we are not human. Nothing could possibly be further from the truth. Even Otherkin are Human because they wear a Human Shell over their soul, it is like a coat... you can't remove it unless you die.

I claim the rune Uruz as Mine, it's symbolism is strength, and I have etched it into my very soul so I will never ever forget who I am and what I think I stand for. The meaning of Uruz I think holds relevance here. Strength is not to enforce will upon others and that is exactly what some would like to see, and I couldn't possibly disagree more with such an idea.

I don't really care if you are a God, an Angel, a Demon, or an almighty dragon from beyond the heaven's themselves, where no mortal has ever gone. It doesn't matter 1 bit; if you enforce your will upon others then you should be maimed to death for the benefit of society as a whole. I don't even have to say that for it to be true because it is an unspoken truth, if you enforce your dominion long enough it is naturally inevitable for something to stand against you, and in so doing you are only creating an enemy that you have no chance of ever defeating.

Will the Vatican ever prevail over Atheism?

No, it will not dominate Atheism in 5 years, nor 10, nor 50, nor 100, nor in the next millenium, nor after we are all dead and gone, and new people take our place. That will simply never happen.


That is exactly why this must not happen also. Not 1 of you has any right to post any information about anyone you deem irresponsible, by so doing you become irresponsible yourselves.

Am I helpful?

Am I nice?

Because I wasn't always that way. 10 years ago, I was still awakening, and I was definitively a monster that you would have probably added to your list of "bad" vampires. But if I had not gone through that then I would not have had the need to request help from the elders of that time, I would not have come as far as I have, and I would not be here today to help any of you with your equivalent issues or indomitable curiosity.

And while we may think highly of ourselves, things we can say, things we can do, perhaps just our words or our abilities as a whole, or even just our conviction, there WILL come a time when you stand against someone much stronger than you, because evil was designed for conflict. You cannot defeat the Left-Handed Path with the ways of the Right.

This is something that was slammed into my head by force and forced me to my knees in humility and respect. No matter how strong you are, no matter how much conviction you have, you cannot defeat true evil. True Evil is undefeatable, that is something I learned the hard way.

The only thing you can do is choose to stand against it, no matter what happens. Each of us do so every day, if we so choose, without the need for any such lists designed strictly to troll people who do not fit into the labels the society deems regular.


If I ever see such a list, I will do everything in my power to lawfully remove it.

Thanks for your patience and understanding.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Azoth on October 17, 2009, 10:38:33 pm
It is better to lead by example than to dictate conduct....


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Gray on October 19, 2009, 01:05:36 pm
I have experienced a small amount of persecution but I am a member of an industrial band and most of the time i get the old "oh, he's a musician" line and everyone just nods their heads and returns  to whatever they were doing as if it's normal...


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: RKCoon on July 24, 2010, 10:22:59 am
Well the best way to deal with negative publicity is simply not have any, but since thats not gonna happen anytime soon,  distancing the groups from such is needed,  but not with silence, rather, with making it clear that these people arent representative of the larger group as a whole. However, Ive not seen that happen either, unless the topics go to things like murder and rape, and even then, its iffy. Ive personally seen supposedly high standing members of more than one community go on public record stating they supported the discussions of vampiric rape and force feeding,  never mind whackjobs like "JS" and the entire fiasco that arises from them. 

 Edited to only contain the parts that pertain to the subject matter at hand and to remove the attempt at starting arguments under this thread as has happened else where.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Gray on August 10, 2010, 07:45:19 pm
I wonder how effective posting our OWN brand of You Tube videos would be? If the"JS"'s of the world can do it, so can we. After all, if we didn't want any publicity, there would be no CafePress items for sale (which are very cool, by the way). This could be a terrible idea but then again, one that might be worth considering. I'm not even sure how effective it would be and, of course, there will ALWAYS be someone havng issue with it. I lost myself at 'I wonder..."


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: paindancer on December 04, 2010, 03:55:32 pm
Provide positive examples instead of reacting internally to third party negative examples.

I think a vampire sponsored blood drive would be a effective publicity stunt, for example.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: RKCoon on December 04, 2010, 07:56:49 pm
Riiight, why dont we just open up and say, then, that we are also opening up new houses for all the twitards and such?


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Nadia115 on December 04, 2010, 08:01:21 pm
Actually the blood drive has been discussed. Not a new idea at all.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: RKCoon on December 04, 2010, 08:05:31 pm
Did they? I must of missed that particular memo.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Nadia115 on December 04, 2010, 08:23:52 pm
Well hells...I thought I told you hun. It WAS during October that it was being discussed and as you personally know, I was very busy so I probably forgot that. But, yes, it has been discussed as an idea for NEXT Halloween season. So now, everyone knows LOL.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: childofthespiral on December 04, 2010, 09:31:16 pm
I've read every post in this thread, and I'm of the opinion that there needs to be a combination of openly stating that the vampire community doesn't support or condone acts of violence done by an individual who claims to be a vampire. There's quite a number of news stories in the media about crimes commited by supposed vampires, and whether the perp is actually a vampire or not, violence is wrong and perhaps we can take a public, unified stance against such a thing. Nearly every news organization publishes a web version of their news report, and since they more or less get posted here, we could sign up with that particular websites message board and state that that action is not supported or condoned by the VC. At the very least do so when it shows up in your local news media.

I don't think that we should just ignore the situation and hope it'll go away. America did the same thing in the late 1930's and we nearly lost our entire Naval fleet at Pearl Harbor. We need to be proactive and do our best to prevent social stigma before it becomes a serious problem. We have the advantage of foresight, shouldn't we use it?


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: RKCoon on December 04, 2010, 09:50:31 pm
Actually, if one is a student of military history, and I am an amateur one, one would be aware that Pearl Harbor was a deliberate setup to allow the US entry into ww2. They knew it was coming for months, they had the radar to detect the forces inbound, and things were deliberately stalled to prevent a proper defensive action.


Funny, how history repeats itself.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: childofthespiral on December 04, 2010, 09:59:10 pm
I was just using that as an example. I'm not really into war history, I really detest such things as war and violence. What I know is what I learned in Florida's public school system.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: RKCoon on December 04, 2010, 10:06:21 pm
Just to wander off topic a moment, do they teach you that Canadians burnt the White House to the ground once?


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: childofthespiral on December 04, 2010, 10:11:08 pm
No, I wasn't taught that. Did they? Florida focuses on teaching their students what they need to pass the states' standardized test called FCAT. If it's not on that test, it doesn't get taught. After all, if students don't pass it in 5th grade, they can't leave elementary school, if 8th graders don't pass, they can't go on to high school, and high school students begin taking the test in 10th grade. If they don't pass it then (2/3 don't) they have 5 more chances. There was actually a high school valedictorian who wasn't allowed to graduate high school because he was blind and the law states that the test cannot be read out loud. He and his family sued the school board and the state, but I don't know what happened to the case.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: RKCoon on December 04, 2010, 10:30:21 pm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burning_of_Washington

Yes its Wiki but its close enough. Enjoy. :p


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: childofthespiral on December 04, 2010, 10:52:33 pm
Thanks! Although according to that article, they were still British at the time. Interesting, the things they don't teach you in school.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: display on December 05, 2010, 01:00:46 am
damn english lol  :P


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: display on December 05, 2010, 01:04:25 am
before anyone starts crying... I was borne in england...whiltshire T. B. E.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: paindancer on December 05, 2010, 07:48:41 am
Actually the blood drive has been discussed. Not a new idea at all.

I think I brought it up at the la twilight but I'm sure I wasn't the first.  It's easy to come up with positive pr stunts.  Just a matter of providing a constant positive face, community wise.  That face BTW should not be one individual.  The goal is community pr not a cult model.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: childofthespiral on December 05, 2010, 12:30:16 pm
Thats what I was meaning. All these different news websites have a section underneath the article where users can post comments. the articles relating to vampirism almost always get posted here, so why can't as many of us as possible who read said article sign up to post a comment (I've never seen one that cost money) and leave a positive comment about vampires, and possibly a link to one of the decent websites about vampirism, like this one? It wouldn't be an official statement, and it most likely won't get national attention, but the other people reading the news article and/or the comments section on that article would at least to have a chance to get accurate information from independent sources.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: display on December 05, 2010, 12:37:00 pm
try Real Vampire News,
its a unbias site


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: childofthespiral on December 05, 2010, 03:50:53 pm
I follow them on twitter. They never tweet, lol.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Persephone on December 05, 2010, 06:17:15 pm
@ childofthespiral ,

When Meriticus posts an article on here (& even sometimes when he doesn't) vampires do post in the comments section. Sometimes they can help provide a positive image of us in contrast to a negative one presented in the article, but often their posts don't help. Why? First, because other posters with a moronic mentality usually overshadow the more intellegent posts. Second, because most of the people who write such articles don't have an interest in creating a positive view of the vampire subculture, so they either ignore our posts or use them as a springboard to write further biased & infuriating articles.

I think the idea of presenting positive PR events to contrast negative media is a better plan. ABC's 20/20 could skew their show on the vampires of New Orleans all they wanted, but they couldn't make fun of how NOVA feeds the hungry there. Sometimes it's just a case of actions speaking louder than the most eloquent of words.


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: childofthespiral on December 06, 2010, 02:37:54 am
I agree with that too, holding positive, public events like that would do well. But as more people become aware of true vampirism, it'll be unavoidable that teenagers will be drawn to the movement and their parents will be upset. Seems to me it would be helpful if accurate information was made available as widely as possible *shrug*


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Octarine Valur on December 07, 2010, 08:42:53 am
Dear all, allow me to address this question from the perspective of human rights activism. Some of you might be annoyed with my continued reference to the LGBT rights movement, but I do this for two reasons - one being that I see a lot of parallels between that cause and this one, and also therefore a lot of ways we could benefit from adopting some of the strategies of the other.

1) "How can the community respond when individuals who claim to be "vampires" act in socially inappropriate ways?" "We can’t control who decides to claim membership – even the undignified, careless, delusional, or dangerous who happen through our community aren’t immediately turned away, even if they aren’t accepted." "how do we deal with the media and social fallout when such “fringe” members or non-members have had real contact with our community, however brief or unfriendly?"

- In terms of crime blamed on all because of the actions of one, the standard approach appears to be a) deny the individual is a member of the community, or b) state the obvious, that an entire community cannot be realistically blamed for the ill-conceived actions of one of its members.

2) "The vampire community is loosely affiliated, rather than organized, with no central authority or modes of censure, no borders, and no shared ideology."

- So is the LGBT community - yet they are spoken for in the public domain by researchers, activists and human rights advocates, with the support of sizable portions of their community, overtly or covertly.

3) "How do we draw lines that will keep our community safe, especially when community participation is often anonymous (Internet message boards) and semi-public (club events, Goth nights, Meetup groups, etc)."

- That's a million-dollar question - even the LGBT community has events often infiltrated by those hostile to it - the best that can be done is to encourage responsible behavior, especially when in public view. That community has been on the receiving end of a full-scale war mounted against it from very much the same conservative/religious fundamentalist groupings we face, and for much longer. The only reason we don't face the same level of hostility, is because we seem fewer, are less visible and they don't take us seriously or view us as such a threat to them yet.

I'd like to add that in addition, wherever there are negative statements made about the community in general, whether in the press or media or online or in public forums etc, there should be those willing to address the prejudice, misconceptions or bigotry in them. I think over the past decade or more, this approach has been extremely effective in LGBT advocacy. Younger generations are extremely web-savvy and active online, and also far more open-minded than most of the older generations.

The LGBT community has numerous newspapers, community based organizations, websites, forums, groups, just as the VC and OVC do. These would be ideal to disseminate standardized material from - the only problem we face here is a lack of standardization, and there are very few actual vamp newspapers out there ;) and what few there are, are online.

Additionally, what would help this is having a cache of reliable medical, scientific or cultural information available for those doing the defending to draw on - and unfortunately, this is where our defense currently falls flat. At the moment, all we have is scant references to "civil rights" such as "freedom of expression", "freedom of speech" and  "freedom of religion" to draw on under the broader mantle of human rights.

While these are good enough under some circumstances, in others, such as breaking down narrow-minded and closed-minded thought, more direct and decisive material is needed. This can be provided by more revealing and impartial scientific or medical research data. At this point I would like to suggest the areas of scientific research that could produce useful material might include ways to produce evidence of the existence of prana, prana transfer, ways to demonstrate the need of vamps to feed (other than just the by now traditional psychoanalysis that tends to cast a dark shadow over us all).

As a final comment, I think a database of groups disseminating harmful material should be compiled, and especially of groups who do so while claiming to be part of or representing the VC.

Just a broad collection of my thoughts and suggestions ;)

Val


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: childofthespiral on December 07, 2010, 03:29:46 pm
How do I post a thumbs up?


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: paindancer on December 12, 2010, 10:43:03 am
+1


Title: Re: AVA Discussion: Dealing With Negative Publicity?
Post by: Persephone on December 12, 2010, 09:32:31 pm
Great suggestions, Octarine

I think we have the means as a community to begin a systematic approach to improving our community's public image. We don't have to just throw our hands up in the air & complain that nothing can be done. Neither does everyone have to come out of their coffin to march in a pride parade. We have the models of other identity groups & awareness movements to follow, from which you've pulled some very good suggestions.

We know from 2 decades of bad press what to expect from the media & hate groups. This means we can take measures to prepare for more of the same, because it's sure not going to get any better if we stand back & do nothing. As much as some people would like to crawl back into the shadows, society knows we're here now, so we can't just hide.