Jan 182011

Tonight, someone basically informed me that they thought the MALL Directory was a waste of time. It took me aback momentarily, as I feel this group – and the information provides a necessary service to both individual seekers and organizations.

Here’s a little more information about what I am doing, and how and why I am doing it:

Q: Why do the directory at all? Why not just have people search for their locale?

A: Unfortunately, the majority of (FetLife in particular) groups do not identify themselves in a way that ensure people can find them by doing a search. Often, the names and descriptions are inadequate or vague, and will cause them to be overlooked. I research and categorize where groups belong.

For example, a (presumably hypothetical) group called “NE Kinksters.” NE of where? Is “NE” referring to Northeast or Nebraska or New England? Is it a town or a county? Perhaps the description would help, except it too might be vague, saying, “For kinky people in the NE area”.

Q: Are you only including information for munch groups?

A: Not at all! My goal is for people to find any/all local resources that will help them move beyond their computer screen and into the scene, and/or to connect with local individuals. Additional listings may include MAsT chapters, leather and special interest groups (such as rope lovers or submissives only).

Q: Why do you have “spam” and “inactive” groups listed?

A: This is partly for my own benefit. There are so many links that are no longer active for whatever reason. Without a record of them, I would be likely to stumble over them and try to add them again. In addition, this would hopefully help others as they find links to know what is current and not.

Q: Why is my group not listed?

A: Because you haven’t “advertised” it yet! smiles
In part because there’s only one of me and the internet just keeps growing! However, with a direct prompt, I’ll make sure it’s in the listing. No group has been (or will be) intentionally overlooked.

Q: But wait…aren’t Yahoo (and other) groups defunct or a waste of time?

A: I don’t think so. Not yet at least. For now, there are a number of local organizations that still have a solid presence with Yahoo. With the way FetLife is currently set up, it is still a better choice for keeping a group’s business (eg rsvps) confidential. And, although FetLife allows searching by location, there is still no one way to find all the groups in an area. Hopefully this Directory will be a go-to resource as people expand and refine their search.

Q: Do I have to be the leader of the group to send you a link?

A: Absolutely not! I welcome information from all sources. I pull descriptions from the group’s webpage directly, so you do not have to worry about “speaking for them.” However, I do encourage group representatives to post to their locale’s thread, to give a personal face and connection.

Q: What if my group is active in more than one state?

A: If your core membership includes and actively is trying to reach more than one locale, please make sure it is listed in both.

Q: How do I get a correction made to the MALL Directory index listing?

A: Just send me an Fet-mail with the correction. Depending on the information, you may want to add the information to the thread for everyone to see. (eg Your group has recently changed something substantial to its definition).

Q: What can I do to help?

A: Take the time to verify the listings I have in the Directory. If you are an owner of a group, ensure what you have listed for “related links” are valid and up-to-date. Ask yourself, “How can my group be found?” Make adjustments to your group name and description, if applicable (and be sure and tell me too!)

One more thing…If you are a member of a group, please take the time to thank those in leadership positions; I am certain it will make their day-or more!

Q: Are you done yet?

A: Hahahaha! No… not until I catch up with the internet…

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