Our Response To Young Nudists Bullying & Bashing Online
We’re all familiar with Facebook and if you have been on the site for a while, you probably have seen some pretty nasty interactions. Nudists on social networks tend to be more aggressive than most other groups (from my personal experience). It is no secret that Facebook is a also breeding ground for bullies…. And bullies are people I can’t tolerate!
A little note about Facebook groups for those who may not be aware:
There are three main types of Facebook groups: Open, closed and secret.
The “open” groups are groups where anyone can see the posts and its members even if they are not part of the group themselves. Open groups can be found via search and are easy to discover.
As for “closed” groups – YNA has one of the largest and most active nudist / naturist Facebook groups. That group has over 7,000 people in it and it is a “closed” group. Closed groups are groups where people can’t see the posts, but they can see who is in it. This type of group can also be found via search and are easy to discover.
In “secret” groups, only members can see the group itself and the posts. It’s invisible to everyone else and cannot be found in searches. You can only join if another group member or admin adds you to it. The benefit of secret groups is the fact that nothing will pop up on anyone’s timeline.
YNA has a few secret groups, for example:
1 – Women Only – We created this group just for women as a safe place to discuss gender-related or other important issues.
2 – Men Only – Same as the women only group, we created this group just for men to talk about issues that they feel more comfortable talking about among other men.
We briefly review every person who requests to join our “closed” group. Since we get hundreds of requests to join every week, sometimes people can get in that don’t belong. But that is the world we live in. We deal with these people on a case by case basis and will not hesitate to kick someone out if they don’t behave appropriately and respectfully.
We have countless people who help us with the overwhelming amount of management that is needed to maintain a happy and positive group.
But still there is the unavoidable drama. In general, people are very opinionated and vocal online. Far more than in person. They are also quick to judge and even quicker to shame and bully. It is like the Wild West. They hide behind computer screens and act like they are gods but for the most part, when you meet these people face to face, they fold and show their true colors.
Recently, I personally have been a hot topic of discussion in a number of Facebook groups. On those threads, I have been accused of everything from reporting pictures of other nudists, to friend-requesting too many people, to promoting pornography and at some point I was blamed for endangering the future of naturism.
Full disclosure – Yes, I do click on friend recommendations that Facebook offers me (though I have not been active in the past couple of weeks). I personally get friend requests daily – more than I can even review. So when people say that I am a horrible person for friend requesting people I might not have met, all I have to say is – grow up. I also have no way of knowing if I’ve previously sent someone a friend request so if you are worried about clicking that button to deny my request again, you can simply block me and never have to see a single thing I post ever again. You can also easily just deny the request – I honestly don’t get the drama surrounding this issue. It is one click and that’s it. It seems like this is only a “big issue” because certain people are actively looking for any reason to discredit me / YNA.
The issue that I have is that some nudists out there are just downright mean. For example… a girl posted that I reported her pictures to Facebook which caused them to be removed. I have no idea why someone would say such a thing since we have been one of the most vocal people fighting against Facebook censorship. For the record, we think reporting other naturists’ photos is a despicable act and we honestly don’t have the time or energy to even think along those lines. The girl spreading the rumors never reached out to me directly to ask me about it. When I found out what she was saying and contacted her, she did not even have the common decency to reply to my message.
This sort of behavior is just juvenile. Gossiping, pointing fingers, stirring the pot and then hiding. Yesterday, someone really lashed out at Felicity – cursing at her and calling her names. Needless to say, that person was removed from the group.
People need to understand just how many things we have to deal with every single day. Especially when it comes to behavior issues. Since we have to protect the people in our groups, we take swift and harsh action. So far, I have to say that the interaction in our groups is wonderful. People are really using it as place to connect and discuss personal and societal issues.
Another fact that people choose to ignore is that it is OUR group. We created it and devote hours to maintaining it. If you don’t like us or our group then you can simply leave – it is that easy. No drama needed.
I think the reason why some people have a negative view of us is the fact that we act. We will jump in if someone is misbehaving. We don’t just sit back and let things happen. You won’t see a long thread dedicated to bashing someone in our groups. You won’t see ego-driven agendas. You won’t see many of the things that other groups may let slide. Our actions are indicative of our morals and ethics and since we are vocal, people tend to see us as confrontational.
The sad part is that most people will not stand up and say something. As in the case mentioned above – anyone who knows me would know that I am not in habit of trolling Facebook looking for pictures to report. But yet, most will not utter a word when they see a post about it. Those who remain silent are just as bad as those who created the drama in the first place.
Some people are afraid that they will not be able to go to a party because they stood up for what’s right. In such cases, I have to ask – is going to a party worth throwing away common decency? Why would you even want to support a group that bullies others? It just does not make sense. We as human beings need to rise above such petty and self-serving behavior. If you see something – say something!
In essence, the good people will remain quiet while the bullies of the world go about bashing people. This needs to stop. People need to grow up and leave High School behind. These constant attacks by “fellow” naturists on YNA, Felicity and myself need to stop.
The image above is a great example of the type of correspondences that I loathe. This was a private message to me on Twitter. As you can see, the individual has already made up their minds about YNA and couldn’t be bothered to ask me or us about anything before sending me that note. They also unfollowed me (I guess out of protest) so I have no way of replying back via private message. This bash-and-run behavior is at the core of the communication issues that many online are forced to deal with. On a positive note, at least they did not post it publicly which is the minimum I could ask for.
We have not responded to the many attacks thrust upon us recently. Mostly because there is no truth in what they say. If you have seen such posts and want clarification, then just ask us directly. Also, sadly, most of the accusers have never met us nor have they attended any of our gatherings or events. Don’t trust what you hear – find out for yourself.
If you have a problem with me, let me know. I am human, I make mistakes. If I am in the wrong, I will be the first to admit it. But don’t go around trying to tarnish my reputation or hurt me by spreading lies. I have not done anything, knowingly, to hurt anyone. I expect the same type of respect in return.
We can also agree to disagree – nothing wrong with having different opinions.
Now that I have vented, I just want to ask people to be a little less mean and judgmental, and a little more compassionate. I also want to urge people to stand up for what they feel is right. Hell, both Felicity and I got arrested for standing up for what we believe in and while the experience was not enjoyable, it was the right thing to do and we are better for it.
Also, let this serve as a warning to all those who wish to be part of our group. If you have issues, do NOT post them publicly. That may end up getting you booted. Always be direct and reach out via email or private message.
We are working our asses off for a better tomorrow – please stop trying to damage our efforts. For the most part, those “fellow” nudists who would love to see us close down are the same people who directly or indirectly reap the most benefit from the work we do.
In closing, I would just like to address one last issue – our support of the Young Naturist Gathering at Sunsport Gardens in Florida as this has been a source of hate-driven rants.
For those who may not know, Sunsport Gardens has been hosting the young naturist bashes from the beginning. Their events have been taking place on the same dates for the last few years. This year, a few days after they announced their 7th annual gathering of young naturists, they found out (through Facebook of all places) that the group Florida Young Naturists, who have been mainly organizing those events, had decided to hold their event during the same weekend at a different nudist location.
This is why Sunsport Gardens reached out to us to help support the event and get the word out. No one as of yet from the FYN group has been able to explain to me why Young Naturists America should not be supporting the efforts put forth by Sunsport Gardens.
While it may irk some, for whatever reason, we will not alter or change our position. Sunsport Gardens has been the home and birth place of many naturists and their dedication to naturist values is unwavering.
There is absolutely no reason why this beautiful, warm, inviting and safe community, filled with wonderful families, should not continue to receive support from value driven groups and organizations such as YNA.
To all those who seek to bash us for helping out a great naturist resort, you should be ashamed of yourselves! FYN never even asked us to help or get involved and therefore, as I see it, they have absolutely no justification for their relentless bullying.
For the record, I don’t hate FYN and I actually wish them much luck and success. I hope they do well and stick to the ideology that is shared by many naturists worldwide. That said, the bashing that has been directed at me personally, for YNA’s support of Sunsport Gardens, has been out of line. It is upsetting to even have to be dealing with such issues when, in theory, we should all be on the same team and supporting one another.
So what do you think? Please feel free to share your thoughts and opinions with regards to Facebook, public interactions (vs private ones), gossiping and taking a stand.
Correction: Sunsport Gardens and FYN announced their events within a few days of each other, and it’s been brought to our attention that it was FYN’s announcement that came first, followed by Sunsport 3 days later. However…it also doesn’t really matter. What matters is that all this drama with conflicting dates could’ve easily been avoided with some simple communication. Here is Morley Schloss’ comment on the matter:
“The dates when the Spring events for young naturists first appeared on Facebook this year are irrelevant. Sunsport has hosted events for young adults on the second weekends in April, August, and December ever year for some time. This is the seventh consecutive year for a young adult weekend at Sunsport on the second weekend in April. The dates have been published in Naturist Society and AANR publications and on Sunsport’s website for years and were distributed in writing at the Young Naturist Summit in Florida over a year ago. The person who set the dates for the Spring Bash at Sunny Sands was well aware of the dates of Sunsport’s Fests (and helped produce some of them) but chose to schedule his event at the same time. If he had any question about Sunsport scheduling the Spring Fest this year, he could easily have made a phone call. In the future, I would hope that people scheduling events for young adults would avoid conflicting dates so that young adult naturists are able to join in a variety of events.”