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When scouts talk on Facebook

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Our troop has a long history, so no surprise that a former member started a Facebook group "friends of" the troop.


I've just joined this troop group when I joined Facebook this week (a bit of a late comer to Facebook though!!). Much of the banter is fun -- talk about the past, campouts, etc.


However, the current SPL and previous SPL have had a conversation both about the troop and specifically about a couple of younger scouts (giving their last name). The language is, to be blunt, un scoutlike, profane, and to me its a huge problem that they name names of younger kids.


Of course, if I mention this, they could easily "unfriend" me from this group -- and could continue this kind of talk without me knowing about it.


I just found this out today -- and my thinking is to approach the SM to let him know, but then as committee member -- approach the current SPL directly about this, and approach the previous SPL's Dad (who is still an ASM).


Looking for thoughts on this.





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This is a wonderful opportunity to teach your Scouts just how damaging the internet can be. Employers, teachers, pastors, colleges, etc... can all view what they're saying. Facebook can be a great tool, but one needs to be careful.

They need to be confronted about this.

I've removed several Scouts and Scouters from my Facebook, because I don't want my other Scout and Scouter friends to see what they've written in poor taste (at least not with my name or "Face"as a link).


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As a fellow Facebook user, I try to remember that Facebook does not 'cause' the things described here. To some extend Facebook may facilitate it but I view it more as a way to keep in touch with what they are saying and thinking. Then, I try to be ready to provide a positive response should the opportunity arise.

I think the original post is correct that the others would likely 'unfriend' him.

To me, and I have learned this from personal experience, the more a parent is removed from the life of their child, the more room there is for that child to fill the void with thoughts and language that might be unhealthy...and undiscovered. One key to a solution is increased parental involvement.

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the issue becomes the posts on the page are read by many people. At some point an adult may tip his hand that he has read the page and if he does not saying anything about the content, then there are those who will take the non-comment about content as consent they are free to trash whoever they wish.


A question to the owner of the page may be warranted along the lines of "is this the image you had for the page? , is this scoutlike? or the like. If the owner of the page is one who posted the objectionable material, there isnt much you can do about it othe than disavow your self from it. If you find you are cut-off, then its worth asking what is it they talk about that they don't want you to read?


Saying nothing implies approval

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Yah, what would yeh do sittin' around a campfire if this came up, eh?


Don't get hung up on the medium.


If around the campfire you would chime in and say "hey, those guys aren't so bad, let's be fair" then go ahead and post that on Facebook.


If around the campfire you'd wait and then speak to a lad privately about it, then go ahead and send the lad a private message or email.


If around the campfire you'd let it go because you didn't know the lad well enough to be an effective mentor in this case and would instead just tip off the SM, then mention it to the SM.


If around the campfire you'd let it go because these are good kids and they were just blowin' off steam talkin' about the challenges of workin' with some younger boys, then let it go.


Sayin' nothing doesn't always imply approval. Lots of times it can imply disapproval. Sometimes, it just means it ain't the right place or context to raise an objection, or you aren't the right person to object.



(This message has been edited by Beavah)

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Being a member of facebook, I must admit that I have been less than thrilled by the language of a few of our older scouts. Most of the ones throwing in an occasional colorful word are the guys who have aged out and are in college. They are facebook friends with some of the younger guys who are still in the troop. We do have one young man (Eagle) who aged out who was our SPL and a JASM during his time in the troop. He is still registered and will most likely go to the 2010 Jamboree as an 18-21 year old 3rd ASM for one of our contingent troops. I do know that the SM for that Jambo troop (who is also from our home troop) is planning on talking to him about his language online since he is/will be an example to the boys. It is inappropriate. Some of the other guys dance on the line by using "eff" or "effing" in place of the F-word.

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