Author Topic: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue  (Read 14500 times)

Offline Rolnikov

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #15 on: March 15, 2013, 08:35:23 am »
He doesn't send them out himself, so, if you haven't already, be sure to let him know so he can chase it up for you.

Offline Des Lewis

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #16 on: March 15, 2013, 09:00:15 am »
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Offline Paul Campbell

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #17 on: March 15, 2013, 04:42:45 pm »
He doesn't send them out himself, so, if you haven't already, be sure to let him know so he can chase it up for you.

No, I didn't imagine for a moment that he did... but, um, why tell the likes of myself and John Probert  here on the forum to contact Lee in the first place? And why, then, would Lee say he'd make sure a copy got to me if it's nothing to do with him? No, Steve: I've emailed four people plus three posts on the forum. I think that's more than enough. Come Wednesday I'm filing a claim. PayPal can deal with it.

Offline Rolnikov

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #18 on: March 15, 2013, 05:29:25 pm »
No, I didn't imagine for a moment that he did... but, um, why tell the likes of myself and John Probert here on the forum to contact Lee in the first place?

Sorry if I'm misunderstanding your question, but I said to contact him because he's in charge and would be able to ask the right people to sort it out.

And why, then, would Lee say he'd make sure a copy got to me if it's nothing to do with him?

I didn't say it's nothing to do with him - my point was just that if he's asked someone else to do it, he won't necessarily know if they haven't, and could chase it up for you.

Offline Paul Campbell

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #19 on: March 20, 2013, 08:42:15 am »
Well, still nothing  :( Filed a claim this morning with PayPal and this is what I said:

Quote
Hi guys, I havenít received any publications from the Society since last summer and as Iíve now reached the limit in which I can file a claim with PayPal Iíve had no choice but to do so. Iíve emailed the Journal Editor and the Stockholder. No reply. Posted 3 times on the forum where the Awards Administrator suggested I contact the Secretary and the Chair. The Chair replied immediately saying theyíd make sure a copy got to me. Still nothing has arrived. Was told I didnít receive the latest copy of the Journal because my membership was expired, but that makes no sense: I was reminded in January via email that my membership was due to expire at the end of February, so when the mailing list went to the printers at the end of January I should have still been on it. More importantly, though, the Society emailed everyone last September saying that because there was no publication that quarter they were going to extend everyoneís membership to include the next publication. The Winter 2012/2013 edition of the BFS Journal is that next publication, meaning I have already paid for it with my previous membership fee. So even if I had decided that this year I wasnít going to renew my membership I should still have received a copy of the latest edition of the Journal, otherwise extending my membership was an empty gesture as I never received anything during those extra 3 months. In other words, all Iíve gotten for my previous £35 is 3 issues of the Journal. The Journalís nice, guys, but not worth £11.67 each.

Offline Peter Coleborn

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #20 on: March 21, 2013, 09:29:43 am »
Paul -- a sad situation and one that could've been avoided quickly and easily if they had mailed out the journal to you when they said they would. All this is not a good advert for the BFS.

Offline CarolineC

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #21 on: March 21, 2013, 12:16:04 pm »
Paul -- a sad situation and one that could've been avoided quickly and easily if they had mailed out the journal to you when they said they would. All this is not a good advert for the BFS.

Agreed, Peter, it doesn't look good. I've heard discontent elsewhere too. And, personally, I don't think I'll renew my membership when it comes due next time - there just doesn't seem to be any benefit to it (for me as a fan - maybe there is a benefit for writers, editors and publishers?).

I know it's difficult for volunteer committee members when they have other things going on - work, home life, etc. Heck, I spent a year as news editor and had to give up because I felt I couldn't give the role the attention it deserved due to other aspects of my life. But I really do think the committee needs to get a grip on things like this. Perhaps more volunteers are needed? But without communication between the committee and the membership we'll never know ...  :(
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Offline David A. Riley

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #22 on: March 21, 2013, 12:25:24 pm »
Paul -- a sad situation and one that could've been avoided quickly and easily if they had mailed out the journal to you when they said they would. All this is not a good advert for the BFS.

Agreed, Peter, it doesn't look good. I've heard discontent elsewhere too. And, personally, I don't think I'll renew my membership when it comes due next time - there just doesn't seem to be any benefit to it (for me as a fan - maybe there is a benefit for writers, editors and publishers?).

I know it's difficult for volunteer committee members when they have other things going on - work, home life, etc. Heck, I spent a year as news editor and had to give up because I felt I couldn't give the role the attention it deserved due to other aspects of my life. But I really do think the committee needs to get a grip on things like this. Perhaps more volunteers are needed? But without communication between the committee and the membership we'll never know ...  :(

I miss the days when the chairman (and other committee members) of the BFS would regularly come on the forum and keep members updated on what was going on. David Howe kept a constant presence here and responded to comments and complaints. BFS periodicals during Stephen Theaker's acting chairmanship and on throughout David's came out regularly and as near as damn it on time. And the membership grew to an all-time high. It would be interesting to find out just how much of this has been retained and, hopefully, built upon, though I have a nagging feeling that the latter is a bit of a forlorn hope.

Offline Paul Campbell

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #23 on: March 22, 2013, 08:22:14 am »
Just received an issue of the Journal in the post. The Autumn 2012 edition, that is. The same one that I received at the end of last summer. I know I said I'd only received 3 issues of the Journal for my previous membership fee, and I guess technically you could say that I've now received 4 - but, er, I wasn't planning on 2 of them being a duplicate  ???

No note inside the envelope, so no idea who sent it. Underneath my address, and printed in brackets, it says 'Pre-March Journal'. Yeah, very pre-March!  ::)

I fully appreciate that the Society is voluntarily run (I've volunteered myself at many of my first FantasyCons before my wife Audrey started attending cons with me) and that we've all got full time jobs, but £35 is £35: I hadn't planned on it being a charitable donation. 2 days since my PayPal claim was filed. No reply. I've got until the beginning of April, PayPal instructs me, and then I'll need to escalate the dispute if I still want a refund.

It used to be that Special Pubilcations were the norm: it's been 2 years since the last one (the 40th Anniversary anthology) and even then that was diligently put together by one man in 6 months who was subsequently embarrassed out of the Society for the crime of being naive. Between September 2006 (when I became a member) and September 2011 there were 7 Special Publications (8 if you include the In Conversation horror interview book which could be purchased outwith your membership). Those Special Publications added a great deal of extra value for money for your membership fee and thus worth while taking one out. But now, paying £35 for just the Journal itself... ?

Every time the Journal does come out there's a change of personnel, reflecting just how squeezed for time the Society is during this 5 year global recession. Other than organizing FantasyCon once a year I just don't see the Society being able to do much else in the future, and the Journals I think will eventually peter out. Lee's a lovely man, but he's full time editor of the Angry Robot imprint, as well as editor of the Hub ezine. Just how much longer will it be before Lee, too, has to bow out from Chair duties due to work commitments?

Hey, talking of lovely guys, is Stephen Theaker still there?! Do me a favour mate, willya? Blag a copy of the Winter 2012/2013 BFS Journal and bring it with you to World Fantasy Convention - looks like the only way I'm gonna get a bleeding copy of the damn thing!  ;)

Offline Peter Coleborn

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #24 on: March 22, 2013, 08:34:18 am »
Paul, there is no reason why you should chase up this issue by contacting individuals -- after all, you've had a response from the Chair already. But have you contacted the stockholder?

stockholder@britishfantasysociety.org

There have always been hiccups in the BFS -- delays, missed posts, etc. It's just a pity that now when we have "instant" communications these things aren't dealt with promptly.



Offline Rolnikov

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #25 on: March 22, 2013, 10:25:59 am »
I'm always here, Paul. ALWAYS. It's a sickness. I won't be at WFC, but I'll put a copy of the latest journal in the post to you if you email me your address.

Sorry I haven't commented on what you've said, but it's a good example of why I work on Shelflings rather than the journal. If someone needs a back issue of Shelflings I can just email it to them...

Like you say, members are willing to accept that we are a bit useless and bumbling and understaffed and might take a while to sort things out, but get frustrated when emails aren't even acknowledged.

One idea I've floated is of having a single customer service email, rather than sending members from pillar to post, someone who could pass queries on to the right people and then escalate them to the chair if they haven't been resolved.

Offline Des Lewis

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #26 on: March 22, 2013, 10:52:54 am »
One idea I've floated is of having a single customer service email, rather than sending members from pillar to post, someone who could pass queries on to the right people and then escalate them to the chair if they haven't been resolved.

A great idea.
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Offline Paul Campbell

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #27 on: March 23, 2013, 06:23:24 am »
Paul, there is no reason why you should chase up this issue by contacting individuals -- after all, you've had a response from the Chair already. But have you contacted the stockholder?

stockholder@britishfantasysociety.org

There have always been hiccups in the BFS -- delays, missed posts, etc. It's just a pity that now when we have "instant" communications these things aren't dealt with promptly.


Hi Peter! If you look again at my PayPal message claim you'll see that the second person I emailed was the stockholder. No reply.

Woke up this morning to a message from PayPal saying the dispute was now closed as I've been credited a full refund. Fine. But no personal message from the BFS -

- and, remember, that refund was for my membership renewal, covering the Spring 2013 BFS Journal onwards. It doesn't address the fact that I have already paid for the Winter 2012/13 BFS Journal with my previous £35 membership fee!

So that's it then, is it?! No personal message from the BFS? So, in other words, yes Paul you were a mug because for your previous £35 membership fee all you got were 3 issues of the Journal. Which works out at £11.67 each. The Journals are 200 pages each. I could buy a 600 page Robinson Mammoth title for £8 - but I've just paid £35 for 600 pages. Not impressed.

Offline Peter Coleborn

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #28 on: March 23, 2013, 02:01:41 pm »
Paul, even if yours is the only problem about a missing BFS Journal, the fact that it hasn't been resolved is not a good advert for the BFS. Any prospective member seeing your posts on this thread and the poor response from the society is going to think again about joining.

I know that the society is run by volunteers and that they have real jobs to do -- I did it myself for many years so I know the demands on one's time -- but it isn't that difficult to sort out a simple problem like a missing publication. This is all very depressing.






Offline David A. Riley

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Re: BFS Journal -- Winter 2012/13 issue
« Reply #29 on: March 24, 2013, 08:56:26 am »
Paul, even if yours is the only problem about a missing BFS Journal, the fact that it hasn't been resolved is not a good advert for the BFS. Any prospective member seeing your posts on this thread and the poor response from the society is going to think again about joining.

I know that the society is run by volunteers and that they have real jobs to do -- I did it myself for many years so I know the demands on one's time -- but it isn't that difficult to sort out a simple problem like a missing publication. This is all very depressing.







And I cannot believe that since this issue was first raised over two weeks ago no senior member of the BFS committee has responded with an explanation or apology.