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Response to the article on Sunday 13th Jan

Dear Site Posters

At YouthNet we have come to accept that TheSite.org will cause some people concern and that our values and mission are not shared by everyone. We do believe that everyone is entitled to factual, unbiased information and advice so that they can exercise choices about how to lead their lives. We believe in the capacity of individuals to make the right choices for themselves and that “telling it like it is” is very important when there is such a lot of misinformation and nonsense being talked about. The fact that TheSite has information about sex and drugs make it automatically “controversial”, so we have to expect this sort of unenlightened treatment at the hands of certain people in the media from time to time.

This piece in the Mail on Sunday is not ground-breaking journalism, the Duke of Edinburgh Award story is over 14 months old. The people quoted firmly and passionately hold their beliefs and values to which they are entitled and we will never be able to convince them of our stance. So we are not going to get into an argument or a slanging match on that count. We also do not want to make things difficult for all those organisations and individuals who do like what we do and who support TheSite.org and YouthNet UK.

Over the next weeks we will however, be using the opportunity in a positive way to position TheSite as an important and valuable place for young people to get the facts, information and advice as well as an fabulous community of concerned, supportive and wonderful people.

I do come in and have a look at the Boards regularly and I think your response to this has been lovely. I completely get why so are so cross and also really like some of the
arguments you’ve been making. Dom and the crew will be keeping you informed.

Best wishes, Fiona

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Perhaps part of the problem is the way the site is used.

    Basically you might get one new topic posted a week in the Jobs forum slightly more in the politics forum (My fave) but then 100 of silly boastful masterbatory exaggerated topics in the sex forum. Obviously much of what is written in the sex and relationship forum is based on inexperienced fumbling and a childish idea that we have to outdo eachother with the latest sex tip. A bit like boys on the back seat of the bus boasting they've had sex with 15 different women and all before the age of 13!

    Anyone who writes articles criticising the site obviously sees this type of thing in the Sex and relationship forum and decides that the youth of today are being corrupted when really they are just giggling teens who in five years time will find things like politics and work a bit more exciting than talking about blow jobs.!!!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Firstly, thank you Fiona for responding personally.

    Secondly I agree with byny. (Politics is also my favourite forum). I think the boards are used by a wide range of people, from different backgrounds and of different ages. It therefore creates a diverse range of topics discussed, from the light-hearted Anything Goes forum, to the more serious Politics/Health, and then the Sex and Drugs forums, which as you say are always going to be controversial.

    To me, it seems the Sex forum particularly acts as an extension to the playground at school. Sex 'tips' are exchanged and exaggerated claims of sexual prowess are made. I can only see the controversy if the writers for the Mail on Sunday have never been in a school playground and seen first-hand what actually goes on.

    Anyway, I am somewhat disappointed the YouthNet UK is not going to be taking the bull by the horns and responding directly to this article. There are two sides to every story and by staying publicly silent TheSite loses the ability to prove its worth. It's a perfectly valid stance to take, but if it were me being falsely accused or misrepresented, I'd want to clarify certain things and express my side.
  • DomDom Boss Posts: 344 Boards Initiate
    here's my two cents... and to clarify a couple of things.

    The Mail on Sunday article was referring to TheSite.org in general, not just about these boards. The specific reference to buying drugs was from our piece of advice hereand not, as some people have thought, from a thread on these boards.

    I think some board members forget that we publish a whole website and that the community area is just one (very important) part.

    As for the sex content - whether in the
    magazine, info section, or on the boards, it is always going to be the first area to be picked up by tabloid press. It sells papers.

    At the same time, this doesn't negate the need for us to make informative, sensible sex information available; sex is a big issue for people who use this website. To ignore this would be ridiculous.

    Dom
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Dom:
    <STRONG> The specific reference to buying drugs was from our piece of advice hereand not, as some people have thought, from a thread on these boards.

    </STRONG>

    Bloody good advice too, do these morons think people would be better off whacking loads of drugs down them first time ? the inability to recognise its a fact people will use them shows the level of understanding from which they are judging. I hope this article has brought more people to the site and these people have discovered how useful it is, make sure you cling onto future lottery funding otherwise it may be dispensed to opera houses which as we all know is of great importance to the development to the youth of this country

    <IMG alt="image" SRC="rolleyes.gif" border="0">
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I think Youthnet and thesite are doing a damn good job.
    Dom, you mentioned drafting a reply, are you expecting one back?
    Could you ask them to give responses to any letters the members might have sent as well? Thanks!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I missed the article, but could someone outline the main points raised in it please? because like Whowhere i'd like to write to them.
    (i admire anyone who posts in the politics forum, because i often go in there to read, but have nothing of any significance to post myself)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    There was a post in 'anything goes' (a few pages back by now) And Kentish posted the article.
    'The sunday mail' or something along those lines.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Miss Quoted:
    <STRONG>There was a post in 'anything goes' (a few pages back by now) And Kentish posted the article.
    'The sunday mail' or something along those lines.</STRONG>
    Here it is: http://www.thesite.org/cgi-noperl/ubb/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic&f=22&t=002413&p=2
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