Can it Get Any Worse?

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Tip
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Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Tip » Sun Aug 05, 2012 2:39 pm

Abridged from Facebook with the author’s full consent – immediate identifiable information has been shielded – but if the author chooses to join in .............
“ This is Facebook. It is a social media site. It is governed by the rules applicable to social media sites. Obviously they control things such as slander and rightly so. Social media sites allow companies to gain publicity. However they also allow everyone a free platform for speech, within the laws applicable.

I belong to other social media sites & forums (not shipping related). On all there is invariably good healthy banter, obviously some positive and some negative (that surely is the norm governing the thing we all hold dearly, namely 'life'?). On some forums there are moderators, but within those boundaries I have never come across censorship. Obviously Facebook is set up slightly differently.

Now I have said that, I am horrified to learn over the past 24 hours that the operators of PS Waverley & MV Balmoral appear to have introduced a "no free speech" policy. I am aware that one contributor to a Facebook site has received, both verbally and in writing, a one year ban on both ships.
Yes, you read that right, the operating company has banned an enthusiast from sailing on their ships for, I am told, posting on a social media site, what they consider to be adverse comments!

Apparently this news was firstly relayed in a high handed manner and with what was described as a "rude attitude" by a senior management figure over the telephone.

I am now also aware of other supporters who have received letters of warning. So it would appear there is a 'yellow red' and 'red card' system in operation!

I personally have received nothing, but I am however neither a PSPS member or a FoW ticket holder. I have sailed on neither ship since 2003, mainly due to my place of residence now. I was, however, an employee of WEL on and off for some twenty years
In my time associated with, or simply following these ships I can honestly say this is the most distressing news I have ever received. Basically it appears to be a gagging order. Personally I became sick of reading everything to do with the ships in a candy coated "isn't it all lovely" style, as in Paddle Wheels. I believe in free speech, within the constraints of the law. I am a British citizen. This gives me certain 'British beliefs' and what I have heard today certainly goes against those.

I intend, whilst fully believing in the continued operational existence of the ships, to continue to post on Facebook. I am not prepared to write "isn't it a lovely day" type posts. I write as I find, albeit from a distance. This might be a good comment or a bad comment. It may be praise or it may be criticism. Obviously I will temper any posts to fit within the social media laws.

I urge everybody else who believes and supports these two ships, and their right to free speech, to do likewise.
Be fair, do not criticise for criticism's sake, avoid comments aimed at individuals and unsubstantiated facts (unless you make the latter clear that it is only your own viewpoint). To allow a gagging order to be put into place I feel is the final straw.
To me that becomes the point when you (not me, I'm not a PSPS member) have lost control of your ships, and is there really much point from that stage on? Perhaps you should be questioning your appointed PSPS representatives in open forum about this. After all it was the PSPS who, all those years ago, created the operating company, albeit WSN in those days.

I've had my say now”

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by mcmahos » Sun Aug 05, 2012 4:35 pm

A very sad state indeed if management have taken the action described. Without knowing the initial criticisms that were posted, I would have thought it better for Waverley management to address those complaints in an effort to minimise them rather than simply trying to quieten the sources of the complaints.

For most of this season, I have heard and read numerous online criticisms, concerns and complaints about the running of the Waverley. Some have been justified, some have not. But a common theme out of all of them is that the Waverley Management are extremely poor at listening to comments, and that their communications with their customers, the public, are very poor, and very often non-existent at times when customers need late information. Facebook is an ideal medium to send out late news, changes to scheduled calls etc due to weather, but it is a medium where you must listen to your followers and customers as they ultimately will pay the next wage packets for Waverley employees. If they are telling you something is wrong, then something is indeed wrong and needs fixed.
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by alasdairmac » Sun Aug 05, 2012 7:48 pm

Like Stuart, I don't know the nature of the complaint or of how it was phrased and so I can't comment on whether WEL's reaction is out of proportion. However, there appears to be plenty of anecdotal evidence to support the contention that WEL are indeed profoundly deaf to complaints and suggestions for improvement and frankly their marketing and customer service attitude stinks.

I bought an FoW membership for this year. It may well be my last if they dont hurriedly get their act together and introduce professional standards to their organisation. I fear though that with poor loadings due to weather and, may I suggest, a lack of any innovative itineraries to induce more to sail on her, that the future may once again be in serious doubt.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by dougie-coull » Sun Aug 05, 2012 10:35 pm

Can only agree with other's comments - very bad state of affairs.

Wondering how FB would view this strategy?

If someone makes a comment or posts something that is inappropriate then FB take action.

So how would FB feel if someone who has posted is taken to task by another party?

Obviously don't have sufficient detail of exactly what was said and how the repercussions were tackled, but perhaps the person who has been banned would want to take it up with FB to complain. Then again, maybe not.
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Tip » Sun Aug 05, 2012 11:37 pm

Its not Facebook that have taken action - its Waverley Steam Navigation/Excursions who have banned a North Devon Friends of Waverley and PSPS member for a year, and the PSPS which has issued written warnings to others.

More at - at the risk of publishing another forum's details - http://www.steamships.org.uk/forum/forum.php

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by dougie-coull » Mon Aug 06, 2012 9:30 am

Tip wrote:Its not Facebook that have taken action - its Waverley Steam Navigation/Excursions who have banned a North Devon Friends of Waverley and PSPS member for a yea
Sorry, maybe I wasn't too clear - I was suggesting FB *may* take action if someone were to complain about what has happened via their pages.

Need to be a member to read the forum you posted I'm afraid.
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Tip » Mon Aug 06, 2012 11:58 pm

It apparently can - From Facebook :-

This will be my final posting on here. Many of you will be glad to know that. My second post has now been removed, along with all the contributions from others that wished to add their comments. This post was removed by Bridget. My first post was removed by Paul Semple. I cannot condone any outfit that embraces censorship to such an extreme. I truly believed in these ships. Those of you who remember me as purser will know the 100% effort I always put in. I am heartbroken it has come to this. Truly I am. I feel that I wasted those periods of the 22 years from 1978 to 2000. What was the point? You now have a inefficient dictatorship managing your ships. Be honest and face facts. I know many of you wish to stick your head in the sand and enjoy your sailing time. But don't you see what is happ...
ening? You are dealing with an outfit that is introducing a Social Media Disciplinary Code. That gives them control. You cannot question anything online without risking penalties (as have already been dished out to one person). I have asked Bridget for the decency of this post being allowed to remain visable for 24 hours. Personally, after what I gave the ships during my service, I think that is a very fair request. Only you will know if it is honoured because I intend wasting my time on here no further. I ask anyone who supports my view to make this know in other media (you are even welcome to cut and post this if you wish, including my name). I have managed without these ships in my life since 2003. I am nearly 60. I'm sure I can manage the rest of my days without them now. I wish you all well. I hope you have many more years happy sailing. Those who remembered me as purser, yes, they were great days and I'm so very glad I did it and it was a pleasure to have met some of you. I only hope and pray I don't pick up a copy of Ships Monthly in Smiths in the next year or two and read an article about Bal being withdrawn and Waverley just becoming a museum piece on the Clyde. Even worse will be if I read about all the members up in arms about it. You had your chance to join forces and do something about it now. But no, you allowed censorship to win, and a dictatorship to rule. I intend to devote all my time to my other hobby now, something I enjoy, unlike this. Goodbye. Derek Gawn.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by yorkieman » Tue Aug 07, 2012 7:34 am

Can someone clarify, who are these Bridget and Paul who are doing the censoring, are they Facebook people (and if so, what was the reason if the original comment was just fair criticism, we have not seen that), or are they WSN/WEL people who can somehow edit Facebook?
Excuse my ignorance on this but I belong to the Facelessbook clan who will never enter into FB!
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by mcmahos » Tue Aug 07, 2012 10:18 am

As far as this 'debate' goes, I'd be far happier if the original Facebooker posted his own messages rather than through the newly joined member 'Tip'. Given that he's been on Facebook obviously means he's on the internet, so why not sign up here, and all the other forums that these messages are being copied to. And without knowing what the original remarks were, it could be highly plausible that Waverley's Management were correct in removing the posts (for example, if individual people were being criticised).

As for the workings of Facebook, then as far as i am aware, if you are the owner or editor of a FB Group / page then you can delete postings on your pages if you wish.

And here's a link (one of many) about businesses and social media: http://www.contentplus.co.uk/small-busi ... /801331519
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by alasdairmac » Tue Aug 07, 2012 12:05 pm

I dont know any Bridget but Paul Semple is a stalwart of Waverley and of the PSPS who freely gives a lot of his time to both, for as example a volunteer relief purser, charter organiser etc. A thoroughly decent bloke and I'd venture to suggest that if Paul removed a post from an FB page of which he was an authorised administrator then it very probably deserved to go.

Like Stuart, I am suspicious of those who refuse to reveal their identity, either by using pseudonyms or by proxies posting for them. If someone doesnt have the balls to own up to their criticisms then they are not worth listening to and deserve to be binned.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Number6 » Tue Aug 07, 2012 2:03 pm

I have a lot of respect for Paul and know of his own run ins this year. As a not disinterested contact of both I do know that he and Derek have been in contact and bridges rebuilt.

As to what is going on between Glasgow and the young man, David Waters of Ilfracombe who has been so maligned by them, there are various moves afoot to try to get WSN/WEL to reverse this utterly mistaken action, but Ms O Neill refuses to recognise what has been done and even threatened police action against Mr Waters senior for phoning her!

The attempted setting up of a social media code by WSN/WEL and the PSPS - otherwise known as a gagging order, is entirely another matter. What a way to make friends and influence people while at the same time asking for public donations - simply an untenable strategy!

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Number6 » Wed Aug 08, 2012 3:20 pm

I am pleased to say that there appears to be hope on the horizon that the FoW ban furore has been recognised as the unfortunate faux pas that it is and I hope in a few days time to have some good news to report.

I sincerely hope that the bodies who made this ridiculous move in the first place will realise what a close shave they have had with some really bad p.r. and learn from it

Now we can revert to considering the ships' fortunes across the 2012 season, where this leaves us, and appropriate responses - And if anyone thinks we are going to be silenced in our free and relevant postings in that regard - Please read Article 10 ECHR - The Right to Freedom of Speech.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Number6 » Thu Aug 09, 2012 12:46 am

And all hope is dashed - found this in our junk mail box tonight ..................

Someone needs to refer this bunch of comedians to EHCR Article 10 - The Right to Free Speech


Waverley Excursions Ltd

Waverley Steam Navigation Co. Limited

Social Media Policy
The widespread availability and use of social networking sites brings opportunities to engage and communicate with our supporters, and wider audiences through the World Wide Web, in new ways. It is important that we are able to use these technologies and services effectively and flexibly. However, it is also important to ensure that we balance this with our duties to our service users and funders, our legal responsibilities and our reputation. For example, our use of social networking sites has implications for our duty to protect our staff, members, volunteers and our reputation.
It is clear that in areas such as libel, or the invasion of privacy, publication through electronic media carries the same penalties as through the conventional written word. Individuals may be risking prosecution, fines and even prison sentences.
Passengers and supporters who engage in any form of social networking should be mindful that their postings could have an adverse effect on Waverley & Balmoral’s reputation, or any individual mentioned by name or innuendo.
To reduce the likelihood that your personal social networking or comments having an adverse effect on Waverley & Balmoral the following rules must be observed by passengers and supporters. While constructive criticism is welcome:

• Do not defame or otherwise discredit Waverley & Balmoral’s products or services.

• Do not criticise Directors, Crew, Staff, Members or Volunteers of Waverley & Balmoral or the Waverley companies in any public arena or on the World Wide Web, in a way that harms the reputation of the companies or individuals or potentially defames individuals. This includes Social networking sites and other publicly accessible internet forums

• Do not allow others to use your sign in details to criticise openly or by alluding to Directors, Crew, Staff, Members or Volunteers of Waverley & Balmoral or the Waverley companies.

• Individuals are responsible for anything that is written under their name that can bring disrepute to that person, the Waverley companies or cause distress to an individual.
Any failure to comply with the above will result in sanctions being imposed by the Companies.

• The Waverley companies reserve the right to remove any posting they consider to breach the above policy.

• The Waverley companies reserve the right to reject a friend request from any person.

• The Waverley companies reserve the right to remove a friend or follower from their social media sites if that person is considered to breach the above policy.

• The Waverley companies reserve the right to refuse a person’s application for, or withdraw membership from the Friends of Waverley Membership Scheme if that person is considered to breach the above policy.

• Further the Waverley companies reserve the right to refuse passage on their vessels if a person is considered to be in breach the above policy.

• If someone from the media contacts you about your social networking activities that relate to the Waverley companies, this enquiry should be referred to the Company’s Press Office.
The Waverley companies are Waverley Steam Navigation Co Limited, Waverley Excursions Limited and their subsidiaries.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by mcmahos » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:24 am

What an OTT reaction. Most of what is written is and should be commonly recognised practice in any public medium - namely that if someone can be identified, or is accused of something, then legal may be taken against the original poster. And don't compromise your online security by letting someone else use your login details.

However, where do you draw the line between constructive criticism and not discrediting a product or service if it is substandard?

How can they stop someone from travelling without having ID checks? I'm quite sure that I could board the Waverley and none of the crew would know who I am.

And as for them retaining the right to remove posts etc, then I refer to my earlier link about companies embracing social media, and instead of trying to hide the bad press, they embrace it and openly try to improve the area that has caused someone the need to voice their concerns.
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by derekchoochoo » Thu Aug 09, 2012 1:20 pm

Hello to posters on this forum.

I had previously decided to not post on this forum personally, but had allowed my Facebook postings to be quoted (as Tip).

However the publishing of the WEL/WSN Social Media Code (or Social Media Disciplinary Policy as it is refered to in other places) has convinced me that I should wade in, in my own right (as derekchoochoo). I do not however intend becoming a regular poster on here.

You will therefore have read previously in this thread the two 'offending' posts I made on Facebook within the past week, so I probably don't need to fully recap on events prior to that.

One was removed by Paul Semple (agreed, a very nice guy, who I have known for years) who is Chairman of WSN. He was briefly given admin of the Facebook site so as to be able to 'police' it and censor my comment (and those of the other people who had contributed to the thread, nearly all in my support). I have since had contact with Paul and bridges have been rebuilt, but that doesn't remove the fact that I was censored by a member of the inner sanctum.

I then made the second post. Strangely within 24 hours admin of the Facebook site had reverted back to Bridget, the site's original admin & creator. She claims she was besieged by complaints about me (which is strange as I have received virtually 100% support) and therefore had no option but to censor me again and remove the second post.

I then made a 3rd and final Facebook post parting company with an outfit that condones censorship to such an extreme, by an apparently controlling inefficient dictatorship (WEL/WSN). That post has been allowed to remain visible so far and has gained virtually 100% support in back up comments.

I was then approached by the admin, once again, then begging me to return to the fold, promising that no more posts would be removed and censorship would no longer occur. I don't know how this could really be promised, as it would give me carte blanche to post anything within legal constraints. Needless to say I have posted no more on that FB site.

Immediately a new supporters site sprung up on FB, promising "no censorship". I made a few trivial postings on there, and that it how I intended to leave matters, especially as I had been contacted by the young enthusiast from Ilfracombe (who had received a 12 month sailing ban for simply using a badly chosen word in one of his slightly over zealous posts) to say that a meeting had been set up for next week and a settlement was hopefully on the horizon.

I have been accused over the last week, by a few, of having either a hidden agenda, hiding behind a smokescreen, or being simply out to "damage the reputation of the ships". None of these facts are true. Although I am no longer a PSPS member, haven't sailed since 2003, and am now resident in Ireland, I still fully support the existence of these 2 ships. I first sailed on MVB with my old dad, 52 years ago, from Ventnor Pier. It is my deep desire that future generations will be able to still do this when I am long dead and buried (albeit not from Ventnor!).

However I also have a VERY strong belief in free speech, human rights, and democracy. It is what being British is all about to me.

Then, late last night I finally read the wording of the WEL/WSN Social Media Policy (as posted by somebody above). I am horrified by the wording of it. It breaches everything that I believe in. Please take the time to read the wording VERY carefully. It binds not only PSPS members, but all "passengers and supporters". It controls all your interaction on the World Wide Web. So, for instance, a paying passenger cannot go home and post a slightly adverse comment on the likes of Trip Adviser. So, without knowing, yourselves as presumably "supporters" (as you are reading this post) are already bound by this awful Code of conduct. Your next post on here, if not in glowing praise of WEL/WSN, could (in theory) land you a "red card" penalty (or at best a "yellow card" warning).

Please, this Code MUST be overturned or at least rewritten with IMMEDIATE EFFECT before it does irrepairable damage to the operation of these two old ships. I am aware that the Editor of Ships Monthly has been contacted this morning, to draw his attention (not by myself). Please, I ask you to react NOW against this Code before it is too late. It infringes on your basic rights to free speech!

So there you have it, from the horse's mouth, so I hope that clears up a few points & misunderstandings.

Some of you may remember me. I closely, with Captain Neill, helped plan PSW's first South Coast visit in 1978. I was Purser of PSW in 1979 and MVB in 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994. Between all of those years I was a regular face on both ships as Relief Purser and in later years Relief Chief Steward (both mostly on MVB). I last served in 2000. I tell you this only in the hope you can see I do have a little 'pedigree' in the WSN/WEL world.

I trust you all enjoy the remainder of your sailing season.

Derek Gawn.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Angus Mac Kinnon » Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:00 pm

What a disappointing and depressing state of affairs - sounds as though the long-term good and benefit to these two fine vessels is secondary to the autocratic pursuits and ambitions of a few. What a shame.
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by alasdairmac » Thu Aug 09, 2012 3:20 pm

Can I firstly correct an error of fact in derekchoochoo's post above: Unless there have been changes in the last week or two, Paul Semple is Chairman of the Scottish Branch of the PSPS and not of WEL; the Chairman of WEL is Graeme Hogg. For those who do not appreciate the differences, the PSPS is a charity which originally purchased Waverley for preservation and which now has no active part in either ownership or management of the vessels. Both Waverley and Balmoral are owned by Waverley Steam Navigation (WSN) under Chairman Nick James, whilst Waverley Excursions Ltd are responsible for crewing, ticket sales etc, and for the overall operation of the vessels during the sailing season.

The key point that I want to make is that WEL maintain their Facebook page as a marketing tool which has the sole intent of attracting passengers on to the ships and so in that context any derogatory comments are counter productive and the last thing any of us surely want is to give them a bad press and thus contribute to a reduction in passenger numbers in these hard financial times for the ships.

Some people do appear to believe that social media sites give them carte blanche to be as rude and libelous as they like. Many are now finding out to their cost that that is not the case and that making defamatory comments about a company, or more particularly about named individuals, on such a forum is equally as odious as doing it face-to-face, except that in my opinion the former is a somewhat cowardly way to go about it. If anyone has a genuine complaint about WSN or WEL or any of its employees, surely the correct place for it is in direct communication with the Company and not to air it in public, at least initially?


Having said all that, WEL's reaction is OTT and has all the hallmarks of a somewhat beleaguered management who don't really know how to handle this. Give them a break guys: they work on a shoestring and are highly dependent on volunteers like Paul Semple who freely give so much of their time to help keep the Waverley paddling up and doon the watter for us all to enjoy.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by mcmahos » Thu Aug 09, 2012 3:43 pm

Agree with everything you say Alasdair, but nowadays having bad reviews/publicity online is not necessarily a bad thing. If you go to tripadvisor or Amazon you can read both positive and negative comments about the hotel or item purchased. In tripadvisor's case though, the hotel owner has the ability to respond to a customer's review. I've seen many poor reviews which has been followed up by a sympathetic reply from the Hotel Manager apologising and that they were taking actions to rectify the matter. That in my mind is how it should be. Don't dismiss your complainant - engage with them and show that you care. Every company has a bad day.

Despite Derekchoochoo's posting, we still do not know the actual content of the original messages that caused them to be removed in the first instance, and I hesitate to add that we probably do not want to know as if they were libelous in any way we do not want them repeated here.
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Doxford Diesel » Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:12 pm

I have seen three other forums with the same theme running on all of them. Why all the cryptic postings? Is some body out to create mischief? If the original poster had been stright up first of all, and let us know what was said at the very start (on Facebook or wherever) then some of the mystery might have been explained, but as it stands we're still none the wiser.

Another thing - where has this mysterious Social Media Policy been published? I can't find it on the Waverley website.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by alasdairmac » Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:44 pm

And I've not seen it either, despite being on their marketing email list as well as that for FoW - and I have checked my junk mail folder just in case.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Number6 » Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:56 pm

Let's get the story right

Derek's post was removed - its the post that starts this thread. There you have it. Make your own minds up !

As to the Waverley set up that post was so far wide of the mark that it needs correction

Waverley was offered to the PSPS per Douglas McGowan by the Calmac chairman in late 1973 after Douglas had noticed that there was no work taking place to return her to service, and Mr Little confirmed to him that she was in fact withdrawn.

The PSPS ran a mile. The prospect was far beyond their imagination

Thus came together Douglas McGowan, David Neill, Peter Reid, Terry Sylvester and George Train who determined that this was an opportunity that could not be passed up. That group of five took the ship on and sailed her under the guise of Waverley Steam Navigation until the 16th July 1977 - the day of the infamous Gantocks incident. I still remember sitting transfixed in my Rover at my own gate listening to broadcasts about "the stricken ship"

The ship was almost a constructive total loss but she came out for a few last glorious hours alongside the Queen Mary on the 12th September 1977 and then took on the mantle of the last Clyde cruiser from that day forward.

What had been learned however was that there must be separation between ownership and operation, and so WSN stepped back became merely the owning company and was granted charitable status. Waverley Excursions Ltd was created to operate the ship(s) If the operation failed the ship(s) were one line back.

Over the years the PSPS has assisted the ships with a never ending and increasing amount of money, and in return shares, in WSN, in addition to those already issued and in private hands, have been issued to the PSPS with the result that today the PSPS is 64% shareholder. Some non involvement.

WSN has no employees but is guided by a board who must all be PSPS members - Paul Semple is vice chairman. Nick James is chair.

WEL operates the ships, employs staff to do this, and also has a board who are also required to be PSPS members. This board is currently operating ultra vires and should take action to correct its own status before criticising anyone else.

The Scottish Branch chairman is Peter Reid - one of the original gang of five.

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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by yorkieman » Fri Aug 10, 2012 7:31 am

As a slight aside re WEL being at arm's length from WSN in order to protect the asset, my understanding is that if a supplier to the vessel made out his invoice to 'Captain and owners' rather than to WEL, the debt would be pursuable against the vessel and its owners. In stevedoring, we always followed that line, not billing an agent, charterer etc. Trading subsidiaries of charities can be useful but have their limitations, add another level of management/bureaucracy and (it seems) need to be carefully controlled by the parent body.
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mcmahos
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by mcmahos » Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:22 am

Number6 wrote:Let's get the story right

Derek's post was removed - its the post that starts this thread. There you have it. Make your own minds up !

OK - this thread ain't really going anywhere, other than history lessons in the Waverley's existence.

To get the story right, whether it be on here, or on the couple of other forums where this 'story' is rumbling along, no-one has been told WHY the post was removed. Waverley's management could very well have been justified in their action. The content of the original message is a mystery, and if it was libelous I don't want it repeated here. Therefore we can't make any minds up. And it is a matter for the original poster to resolve privately with Waverley's management. Not by airing on open forums.

As for the Social Media Policy, I can't see it on any Facebook page, nor on Waverley Excursions website. I don't doubt it exists, but it certainly isn't well publicised and obvious. It's ramifications are worrying, but the means of enforcing it are impractical. Any form of censorship is bad these days, particularly in the online environments in which we all live. It is learning to live and deal positively with the negatives that Joe Public tell you about, that as a company you were oblivious about. Waverley's management looks like they could do with some training in this area.

To that end, I really don't see the need to continue with this thread unless there are developments regarding the Social Media Policy itself.
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derekchoochoo
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by derekchoochoo » Fri Aug 10, 2012 12:13 pm

Ok....one final word from me before this thread gets locked down, and to answer a few points.

I stand corrected that Paul Semple is Vice Chair of WSN (I never said he was anything to do with WEL, so no idea where that comes from), not Chair...I was misinformed or misheard. Paul, I agree, is a great hard working fellow. I am still on good terms with Paul, despite events this week.

The Code in question has been emailed direct from WEL to suposed 'offenders' in the last 48 hours.

It most definately does exist, I have a printed off copy in my hands now.

Another enthusiast has been disciplined only this morning.

The actual statement that the 18 year old lad posted cannot fairly be quoted here. It could stop anychance of the 12 month sailing ban being overturned. He is a young supporter in a coastal town on the Bristol Channel. He does the hanging card circulation around the town for WEL. He is heartbroken about this ban. His parents are involved. The town is one that gives full support to the ships. There is a strong possibility that his local press may pick up his case.

No posts were made by him (or myself) on OFFICIAL sites managed by WEL or WSN.

These postings were made on either PSPS sites (him) or UNOFFICIAL facebook sites (him & me).

The lad in question, true, was slightly badly chosen with his wording and grammar....but remember he is barely out of school....how many of us, when we were young, said things that we would now cringe at?

The offending sentence that he is being brought to task on has one single word in it that is purely a typo error, but it tends to change the meaning of the sentence.

It is a simple 4 letter standard English word, but, like many others in the English language, has many meanings. For instance, in this case, a member of Parliament can be said to hold a _ _ _ _ seat. I guess that may give you a clue. However in this instance the lad did not mean the word to be taken in it's negative, derogatory or questioning sense. Simply that the sailings would be _ _ _ _ to operate (ie they would go ahead).

Sorry to be so cryptic, but I hope you can understand the reasons why.

He is very genuine lad...if a teeny bit over zealous with his outspokeness for his age....he is full of remorse....he is a true supporter (surely we don't need to be alienating young supporters like this....especially volunteer helpers?).

Plus the ban was imposed before the new Code was circulated. That cannot be fair.

My final word is that this punishment should be overturned immediately and the Code withdrawn or rewritten.

Thank you for further space on your excellent forum. Fair enough if you wish to lock the thread now....although I can't personally help but feel that is burying ones head in the sand with this code hanging over you all as "supporters".

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Number6
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Re: Can it Get Any Worse?

Post by Number6 » Fri Aug 31, 2012 12:26 am

So today we have just returned home from a 300 mile round trip and a hotel overnight assisting would be passengers on yet another Balmoral cancellation, thus providing a human face for customers, saving WEL a van hire, 400 mile drive and wages - and what's waiting for us on our return home?

The threat of PSPS disciplinary proceedings for having the temerity to comment on what we see around us - so much for freedom of expression!

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