I recently volunteered to assist an animal rescue group. I am retired so would like to contribute more to community not-for-profit organizations.
This group have a private messenger chat so that they can access volunteers quickly when someone has called in an injured animal. I put my hand up and I wanted to help. I was added to the private group chat as advised during my “induction.”
All good so far.
Recently, a message came in via the group chat that help was needed, at a location, less than 1 km away from my place. The main rescuer, it went on to say, has a bad back and needs help lifting a cage. I am new at this task, but okay, I think, sure I can help. I indicate this on the group chat saying I can be there in a jiffy.
There is no response.
Just silence, which seems highly unusual, going by what I have read so far on past chat convos. So after ten minutes or so, I again message the group: “Look I am new at this, it would be my first rescue, but I can definitely help lift the cage and am in walking distance of the location.“
The response is strange: “If you do want to help, you will have to contact Don.”
Me: “Who is Don and how do I contact him?“
After 10 minutes, the response comes: “I don’t give out other people’s phone numbers.”
I mull over this and think how, the devil, am I to help if I am not given the contact details of the person I need to contact.
So I give up. Maybe this group isn’t for me. They are clearly worried about privacy issues. Which frustrates me, well, it really pisses me off. I could discuss this later with the President, to clarify matters but right now I feel unsure if this is the right group for me in my retirement. It all seems a little too hard. Doesn’t it?
What do you think?
How many times have you, as an individual, listed your phone number on a internet sales purchase, delivery form, survey, hotel, tradesmen enquiry, or Covid declaration in a cafe, of late? If you are like me, it is all the darn time. So why are they frightened of giving out a number in a closed group within a private chat amongst volunteers who are all interested in helping animals, I wonder?
The irony is a week or so later, an unrelated email comes out with all and sundry’s email addresses listed. So much for privacy concerns.
Has privacy issues gone so far as to block communication?*
*N.B. I am not advocating advertising your phone number publicly, as no one wants unfettered offers aka spam texts or messages that contain offers of enlargement medications, bitcoin or the opportunity to be the sole beneficiary of an inheritance from a stranger from Sierra Leone, do they? Me neither.
What pisses you off lately?
What would you do, if you were me?