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Thoughts of how Clubs deal with the Coronavirus


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Posted to Modelling Musings and Miscellany because i can't see a better category to put it in.  I looked at Club and Society Info but wasn't sure if it fitted there because I'm not intending to push out info about our Club, rather to share thoughts with other Clubs (or individuals) about how we keep people sane during the approaching lockdown and maybe help or prompt other Clubs to look at what they could do.  Happy if you want to move it Andy.

 

What Fareham have done so far;

  • for some years we have run a Google group as a mailing list for official communications, calling for support for exhibitions and so on. 
  • We now have a second group set up as a discussion forum so that members can post pictures of the things they are working on and reply, comment and so on
  • More recently we have acquired ourselves a facebook page as an advertising vehicle
  • we now also have a private group set up as a discussion forum.

One problem we have is that we have a number of members who believe that social media should be uninvented hence the need to split onto two platforms to accommodate both views.

 

So far we have had a handful of photos of current projects put up on the Facebook group and the google group is still in the throws of organising itself so not much has happened there yet.

 

Future plans are a little unsure but I am toying with the idea of "going live" on the facebook group to do some demonstrations of weathering and so on, things I keep getting asked to do as a themed evening presentation at the Club but can never find a diary slot to fit it into.

 

So, that's Fareham's approach.  What are other Clubs doing?  Have you got any extension ideas for what we've got planned?

 

Elliott

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Do you have the clubroom space and washroom facilities that would enable distancing and cleansing sufficient to allow a small number of members (small = value fairly adjacent to 2) to use the clubhouse on a strict rota? The question could be put the other way around: are your members amenable to accepting a closely controlled access regime?

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If by "going live" you mean taking a video while you explain verbally what's going on, I can recommend YouTube. It is free to post a video (any size). I am of the "social media should be uninvented" persuasion and find YouTube completely acceptable. The trouble with social media is that it connects all sorts of things which do not belong together, thereby making a nuisance of itself. A video on YouTube is a single fact, a single entity, unconnected with anything else. You can turn off all comments. Even if you leave comments enabled, they don't link back to anything else, so you can ignore them ad lib.

 

To inform interested parties of a YouTube video, you tell them the link. This can easily be done by any means, from a web page, from Facebook or any other social media, even via paper.

 

As another step, you can set up a YouTube Channel, also free, which you give a name (e.g.  Fred-Bloggs-Model-Railways). Once you have set this up, you only need to tell people the channel name once, and all future videos you put on the channel are accessible. The only way people can get to the channel is if they are told its name. Unlike social media, there isn't cross-linking with irrelevant nonsense.
 

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On ‎22‎/‎03‎/‎2020 at 17:06, 34theletterbetweenB&D said:

Do you have the clubroom space and washroom facilities that would enable distancing and cleansing sufficient to allow a small number of members (small = value fairly adjacent to 2) to use the clubhouse on a strict rota? The question could be put the other way around: are your members amenable to accepting a closely controlled access regime?

Well that idea went life expired last night...

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I set up a Skype call in place of our normal beer and modelling night last night, we all sat in front of our cameras and shared what modelling we were doing and the beer we were drinking.  Not the same as being in the room but certainly seemed to lift the spirits. 

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We've had to shut our club as well, but as we own the building,

we have organised a small rota to call in regularly and do a basic

check up and air the building.

This not only ensures that the layouts don't deteriorate because 

of damp or cold (we do have thermostatic, electric heaters, and

a frost-stat), but also, it will hopefully reduce the chance of the

building being a subject of vandalism.

 

We are doing this within the government guidelines, because the

members on the rota are all key workers and are calling in on the

way home from work (so no unnecessary journeys) 

Edited by [email protected]
adding further info
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On 22/03/2020 at 17:30, Mike Buckner said:

To inform interested parties of a YouTube video, you tell them the link. This can easily be done by any means, from a web page, from Facebook or any other social media, even via paper.

 

As another step, you can set up a YouTube Channel, also free, which you give a name (e.g.  Fred-Bloggs-Model-Railways).
 

 

Mike

 

You seem to know a lot about YOUTUBE so I'll ask your advice please.12 years ago when I was chairman of my club I set up a YOUTUBE channel and I posted a few club related videos - then it went dead for 10 years - until now!

 

Now I want club members to be able to post their videos on a club channel.The current channel is linked to my personal email account and so as far as I know for them to be able to post I would need to give out my email password to all club members - a bit risky!

 

So I am suggesting a new channel linked to a dedicated club email address - an address used solely for YOUTUBE purposes.So if that happens , I see two possible ways forward

 

I)  We set the email address to something like [email protected]   and we give out the password to all club members

 

ll) I've seen a video where one person (the club secretary ?) controls the account but there can be multiple users - called managers - up to 50 I understand, but it requires all 'managers' to set up new google accounts thereby not exactly encouraging participation.

 

 

So what is the best way forward? We need a way of members sharing what they are doing during lockdown (and beyond) and we want it VERY easy for them to gain access to upload but also make it 'safe' and not open to abuse.

 

Is this a way forward?

 

 

 

 

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What you suggest looks reasonable to me, and is probably the best solution. If two people log in as the same person at the same time from different computers, I don't know what would happen. I suspect it would be allowed. But even if not, it's just a question of come back later.

 

I too saw a video where one person controls the account but there can be multiple managers, possibly the same one you saw:

 

 

 

 

 


Like too many things to do with computers:
(i) it's a complicated rigmarole
(ii) the video is 6 years out of date and things change quickly


Another possibility is designate one person (or one email address, at any rate) as supervisor, and members email their videos to that person, rather than upload their videos direct. He then uploads them. This idea, too, has drawbacks - it's more complicated, some email accounts have limits on the size of attached files that can be sent or received, the recipient might (especially in these times) become unavailable, the recipient's email account might need regular pruning as it might become clogged with sizeable attachments.

 

All in all, your first idea seems the best one.

 

Regards,

Mike

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Merg have been using Zoom for a while, for committee meetings and a regular global virtual area group get-together (members from Australia, the US and Europe joining in). Now, the physical area groups will also start holding Zoom meetings. Merg has paid for a licence to get around the 40 minute maximum meeting length.

 

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The Zoom meeting went quite well. As we had some members that can't normally make the regular meetings I can see this being used even when things get back to normal.

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Our group (Norfolk & Suffolk Narrow Gauge Modellers) are due to have our April meet on Monday 6th. Obviously its cancelled.

Our members are generally old, I'm currently the youngest at 44 so certainly wouldn't want to risk anything.

 

I've asked members to email me a couple of photos and a brief description of what they have been doing and i'm going to put them in a Flickr album which i'll then email to the group.

Hopefully it will keep the group inspired to carry on modelling.

 

A report will then go on the groups website.

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Our AGM has been postponed as well, we'll hold it when it's safe to do so,

also the membership has been asked to approve the committee carrying

on 'as is', until the 'situation' is over.

 

We are also putting together extra newsletters, hopefully with input from

all members regarding their home projects, and with luck, some of the ex-

railwaymen can supply some tales as well.

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The group who support the Dolgellau exhibition have cancelled all the public shows and our meetings ufn.  Fortunately the local Masons gave us a generous donation which means we can cover the rental charge on the space we occupy with the layout, which we normally meet via donations so our closedown won't be a major financial problem for this year.

If any clubs are looking at financial difficulties due to a lack of income it might be worth seeing if there are any local funds or help being set up in relation to the economic consequences of the pandemic.

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