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Poll , Are you an AMA member because you WANT to be , or because you HAVE to be ?

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View Poll Results: Are you an AMA member because you want to be , or because you have to be ?
Want to be
35.05%
Have to be
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Voters: 97. You may not vote on this poll

Poll , Are you an AMA member because you WANT to be , or because you HAVE to be ?

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Old 02-02-2018, 04:21 PM
  #1  
init4fun
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Default Poll , Are you an AMA member because you WANT to be , or because you HAVE to be ?

Ok gents , the other Poll thread went a bit stale so I thought I'd start a new one . The premise of this thread is simple ;

Are you an AMA member because you want to be , or are you an AMA member because you have to be ?

For the purpose of this discussion , "want to be" means you'd be an AMA member even if you didn't have to be (in order to have the insurance so you can belong to your local flying club , for instance) .

And "have to be" means just that , your an AMA member only because of the local club's AMA requirement (or because you can't participate in competitions on club fields without AMA membership , for instance) .
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Old 02-02-2018, 05:16 PM
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i voted have to be, because i do attend a few fly in/competition functions, from time to time. however i want to be, because as a leader member, i kinda enjoy being a thorn in the side of those who wish to mold the AMA into something it was not intended to be.

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Old 02-02-2018, 05:33 PM
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I've been a member for nearly 30 years because I WANTED to be a member. In the past, I have really believed in the AMA as a whole and thought it was a relevant organization, worthy of expenditure of my discretionary $$. The last few years, I have strongly been considering not renewing because of the direction the AMA seems to be going as well as the fact that they do not seem to be listening to the entire membership. Not only are they not listening to the whole membership, they seem to be digging their heels in and actually ridiculing those that have/are questioning their direction. NOT GOOD!

I do not understand the, "we must grow at any cost" theory that seems to have been adopted by our leadership as well as some members. We are and always have been, a relatively small, grassroots community. The AMA was created in order to bring some organization, consistency and cohesion amongst our small group and to be the voice for our collective group where necessary (remember the frequency threat that we faced?). While it is nice to have a financially healthy organization that can provide scholarships and assistance to clubs, it is simply not a necessary function of the AMA. This is a pay-to-play hobby just like any other. Furthermore, it is each of our responsibilities to be good stewards and advocates of our hobby in order that we ATTRACT new interest and members to ensure the hobby doesn't die, NOT the AMA's. They are simply there to support US and our efforts and to advocate for our privilege to use the NAS where needed.

I am so on the fence right now that I can't vote either way!!

Regards,

Astro
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Old 02-02-2018, 06:31 PM
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Interesting poll, init. Wonder why AMA hasn't asked.............
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Old 02-02-2018, 06:45 PM
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I was a member once for a year, now tinkering with r/c on my property
What's the reason that the hobbyists have to be in clubs?
Before 2012 it wasn't an issue, after sec.336 came this one-size-fits-all idea, now the hobby individual reg.ID is good enough,
Why push something that's unwanted by many?
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Old 02-03-2018, 12:29 PM
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Years ago joined because I thought I had to but found out from the guys who winter in the US its not required and we can still belong and fly at AMA clubs. Doesn't mean most of us lack a vested interest in what path the AMA is on. We love flying in the US and couldn't hope to meet a better group of peopel.

Dennis
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Old 02-03-2018, 04:23 PM
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Club rules require membership. I could find a lot of other uses for the money, though..........
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Old 02-03-2018, 06:38 PM
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I voted because I want to be. It is not just because of the insurance but also because I feel that they are worthy and needed organization. Even with their latest endeavor into the push for drones I still feel they do what is best for r/c in general. We are a very small group, even with the drones, and the AMA's task to keep us under 336 is challenging at the least. But somehow they have managed to do just that. I believe we would be without 336 and that would be detrimental to the hobby, especially to the builder, if not for the AMA.
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Old 02-06-2018, 07:16 PM
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Have to be, it's always been a club requirement any where I have lvied.
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Old 02-07-2018, 07:35 AM
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Have to. I would happily give the equivalent funds (and more) to a club if it wanted to be AMA free and fund it's own insurance.
If it were decades ago, I would say I wanted to.
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Old 02-08-2018, 08:18 AM
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Wow , 43 responses to the poll so far , Thank You to everyone for the participation !

So the genesis of this poll was naturally the discontent some feel (myself included) with the present direction of the AMA's mission . There are some of us out here who appear to feel that the AMA's resources would be far better spent on those of us who want to be members , rather than on those who will never be a member without being forced to . As to the whole "romancing the drone" thing , has it yet become obvious that those who do fly FPV under the auspices of our AMA doc #550 are and were AMA members who were into FPV from it's modern beginnings , and that those who don't & won't follow the commonsense guidelines in #550 have never been AMA members and never will be ? (without being forced , of course) I am going to freely admit , I joined the AMA back when I did because in order to be a member of the local (Control line) flying club AMA membership was a requirement . I quickly came to see the benefit to the hobby , having seen the whole "Frequency Allocation" debacle of the FCC trying to sell off our RC channels to other deep pocketed interests , and have been a member by choice ever since . This is why I , myself , have yet to vote in my own Poll , I joined by force but remained by choice . The whole idea of a national organization advocating for us hobbyists being what's kept me around all these years , I most fear the recent push toward what appears to be an attempt to become a commercial entity (selling insurance to or the training of part 107 operators) rather than advocating strictly for hobbyists only . Are there really that few of us left that the AMA EC should seek to change the core mission , or are that many actual hobbyists sitting on the sidelines of AMA membership because they feel un/under served VS the attention the drone/FPV and commercial sides appear to be enjoying ?

I think my real bottom line question is , how should the AMA best serve those of us who are here because we want to be ?
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Old 02-08-2018, 09:22 AM
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To answer your question.....YES! Well written comment by the way.
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Old 02-08-2018, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by init4fun View Post
Wow , 43 responses to the poll so far , Thank You to everyone for the participation !

So the genesis of this poll was naturally the discontent some feel (myself included) with the present direction of the AMA's mission . There are some of us out here who appear to feel that the AMA's resources would be far better spent on those of us who want to be members , rather than on those who will never be a member without being forced to . As to the whole "romancing the drone" thing , has it yet become obvious that those who do fly FPV under the auspices of our AMA doc #550 are and were AMA members who were into FPV from it's modern beginnings , and that those who don't & won't follow the commonsense guidelines in #550 have never been AMA members and never will be ? (without being forced , of course) I am going to freely admit , I joined the AMA back when I did because in order to be a member of the local (Control line) flying club AMA membership was a requirement . I quickly came to see the benefit to the hobby , having seen the whole "Frequency Allocation" debacle of the FCC trying to sell off our RC channels to other deep pocketed interests , and have been a member by choice ever since . This is why I , myself , have yet to vote in my own Poll , I joined by force but remained by choice . The whole idea of a national organization advocating for us hobbyists being what's kept me around all these years , I most fear the recent push toward what appears to be an attempt to become a commercial entity (selling insurance to or the training of part 107 operators) rather than advocating strictly for hobbyists only . Are there really that few of us left that the AMA EC should seek to change the core mission , or are that many actual hobbyists sitting on the sidelines of AMA membership because they feel un/under served VS the attention the drone/FPV and commercial sides appear to be enjoying ?

I think my real bottom line question is , how should the AMA best serve those of us who are here because we want to be ?
I am confused as to what you are really looking for. You note in this statement that AMA basically saved our frequencies and are a national org that advocates for us but yet does not have our best interest at hand. Did they not advocate to keep us (as 336) from part 107, yes they did. Are they looking for growth, I would hope so with the cost of the past few years of advocating and attorney cost. As for the term "us", anyone that is a member of the AMA is "us", from control line to fixed wing, and heli's, qliders, FPV, and even that dreaded drone. Those that fly outside of AMA membership, AMA safety guidelines, section 336, section 107, is and always will be those that don't want to follow any rules and have always been, and will always be, around...
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Old 02-08-2018, 01:45 PM
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It would appear AMA is still advocating for us by this new safety handbook just presented.
http://www.modelaircraft.org/files/100.pdf
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Old 02-08-2018, 02:46 PM
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lets see, less than 200,000 AMA members, over 800,000 registered drone operators with the FAA.
now who do ya think will win the fight.
and yes, there are "that few of us left"

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Old 02-09-2018, 10:21 AM
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Originally Posted by tailskid View Post
To answer your question.....YES! Well written comment by the way.
Thank You tailskid , I appreciate your response

Originally Posted by acerc View Post
I am confused as to what you are really looking for. You note in this statement that AMA basically saved our frequencies and are a national org that advocates for us but yet does not have our best interest at hand. Did they not advocate to keep us (as 336) from part 107, yes they did. Are they looking for growth, I would hope so with the cost of the past few years of advocating and attorney cost. As for the term "us", anyone that is a member of the AMA is "us", from control line to fixed wing, and heli's, qliders, FPV, and even that dreaded drone. Those that fly outside of AMA membership, AMA safety guidelines, section 336, section 107, is and always will be those that don't want to follow any rules and have always been, and will always be, around...
Robert , What I'm looking for is to get the feeling that our organization really IS working for us (hobbyists) only , as our organization's original mandate stipulates . Yes indeed , the Frequency affair WAS well handled by our AMA , but that was then and this is now ; "What have you done for me lately ?" , well , in my eye , the whole CBO farce attempted forced membership debacle was in NO way any kinds of help/protection for us hobbyists , more like an attempt at future survival of the AMA , hobby be damned ! Tell me Robert , do you know who the RCU member and regular AMA forum poster Franklin M. is ? And if you do know who he is , have you read any of his well presented charts/graphs pertaining to AMA spending on the AMA itself VS the spending on us hobbyist's clubs ? Because when you read that they spend more , MUCH more on so called "administrative costs" than they spend on the very hobbyists clubs that created the AMA in the first place , well then yes indeed my friend I'd say there IS a problem within the present operational structure of our organization . Much like the federal government , ALL government really , the servants have become the masters , and we "worker bees" are expected to toe the line even as we see these changes in exactly whom are serving whom . You appear to be OK with that ? Fine , that is your option and choice to create the "ruling class of aeromodeling" , but don't be surprised when some of us "peek behind the curtain" folks stand up and speak our minds as to what we believe we're seeing .......

Originally Posted by mongo View Post
lets see, less than 200,000 AMA members, over 800,000 registered drone operators with the FAA.
now who do ya think will win the fight.
and yes, there are "that few of us left"

mongo
I agree 100% mongo , I am well beyond retirement age , and am one of the "youngsters" of my flying club ! And , yes indeed a few of my fellow club members do fly FPV , they do it with every type of model aircraft that strikes their fancy , fixed wing , rotorcraft , some even have cameras strapped to model rockets and all are welcome . And yet still we haven't seen any appreciable rise in membership with the "drone revolution" so our membership problem surely isn't with the "unwelcoming club" attitude that has been cited in the past as a reason for the decline in club membership . I really do believe that for a lot of 800 K folks , why bother with the whole club scene when you can just put the drone down on any flat surface and take off , no field of any kind required . The fact of such flying being against AMA rules would be a good incentive for most of them to NOT join the AMA also , Why would someone want to join the NRA if they were gonna break gun laws or the NHRA if they were gonna do street racing ?
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Old 02-10-2018, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by init4fun View Post
Thank You tailskid , I appreciate your response



Robert , What I'm looking for is to get the feeling that our organization really IS working for us (hobbyists) only , as our organization's original mandate stipulates . Yes indeed , the Frequency affair WAS well handled by our AMA , but that was then and this is now ; "What have you done for me lately ?" , well , in my eye , the whole CBO farce attempted forced membership debacle was in NO way any kinds of help/protection for us hobbyists , more like an attempt at future survival of the AMA , hobby be damned ! Tell me Robert , do you know who the RCU member and regular AMA forum poster Franklin M. is ? And if you do know who he is , have you read any of his well presented charts/graphs pertaining to AMA spending on the AMA itself VS the spending on us hobbyist's clubs ? Because when you read that they spend more , MUCH more on so called "administrative costs" than they spend on the very hobbyists clubs that created the AMA in the first place , well then yes indeed my friend I'd say there IS a problem within the present operational structure of our organization . Much like the federal government , ALL government really , the servants have become the masters , and we "worker bees" are expected to toe the line even as we see these changes in exactly whom are serving whom . You appear to be OK with that ? Fine , that is your option and choice to create the "ruling class of aeromodeling" , but don't be surprised when some of us "peek behind the curtain" folks stand up and speak our minds as to what we believe we're seeing .......



I agree 100% mongo , I am well beyond retirement age , and am one of the "youngsters" of my flying club ! And , yes indeed a few of my fellow club members do fly FPV , they do it with every type of model aircraft that strikes their fancy , fixed wing , rotorcraft , some even have cameras strapped to model rockets and all are welcome . And yet still we haven't seen any appreciable rise in membership with the "drone revolution" so our membership problem surely isn't with the "unwelcoming club" attitude that has been cited in the past as a reason for the decline in club membership . I really do believe that for a lot of 800 K folks , why bother with the whole club scene when you can just put the drone down on any flat surface and take off , no field of any kind required . The fact of such flying being against AMA rules would be a good incentive for most of them to NOT join the AMA also , Why would someone want to join the NRA if they were gonna break gun laws or the NHRA if they were gonna do street racing ?
Thanks for the plug. Ultimately it's about the money. How they spend it is a direct measure of their priorities. So this information comes from the AMA itself andtheir 2016 IRS filing (statement of functional expenses). Remember... how they spend their money is measure of priorities
- $23,000 in flying site grants (note 1)
- $336,287 in executive compensation ( 14.6 times amount spent on flying site grants )
- $165,863 on legal ( 7.2 times amount spent on flying site grants )
- $164,796 on office expenses ( 7.1 times amount spent on flying site grants )
- $135,005 on travel ( 5.8 times amount spent on flying site grants )
- $262,549 on conferences ( 11.4 times amount spent on flying site grants )
- $910,653 on "Other expenses" ( 39.5 times amount spent on flying site grants )

Also, they gave $300,000 of our money to the foundation. Unlike the EC where they have to get a bunch of votes of our reps to spend money, foundation board is very small and owe no allegiance to us. In effect, going around members.


Note 1: Click image for larger version

Name:	AMAToday-May3-2016.pdf
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Old 02-10-2018, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by franklin_m View Post

Also, they gave $300,000 of our money to the foundation. Unlike the EC where they have to get a bunch of votes of our reps to spend money, foundation board is very small and owe no allegiance to us. In effect, going around members.
Somewhat ironic. The "foundation" is the brainchild of Rich Hanson, who argued that it was needed to make AMA seem more like a charitable organization worthy of retaining tax-exempt status.
Yes that is on the record, no I'm not going to go look for it.
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Old 02-11-2018, 05:07 AM
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Originally Posted by cj_rumley View Post
Somewhat ironic. The "foundation" is the brainchild of Rich Hanson, who argued that it was needed to make AMA seem more like a charitable organization worthy of retaining tax-exempt status.
Yes that is on the record, no I'm not going to go look for it.
If he (and AMA) would back of the mandatory membership crap, I'd actually support the guy. He's asking some good questions when it comes to spending. For example, when they were talking the "seed money" needed for the indoor facility, he asked "will members see this as a benefit?" That's good I think.

But, the mandatory membership is a deal breaker for me, both as a member and as a taxpayer. I think AMA will be stronger if instead of browbeating folks to become members, they focus instead on creating real value so people WANT to become members. For example, improve local facilities by spending more on flying site grants than they spend on office supplies ($23k on flying site grants, $160k on office expenses).
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Old 02-13-2018, 08:34 AM
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Okay guys, I'm going to throw a comparison at you all and see if you agree:
1) We all can see how the AMA has grown into a money pit with a bloated office staff, ineffective legal department and many "pet projects" being pushed by the EC. The general member is really being ignored.
2) On July 30, 1945, the USS Indianapolis was sunk by two torpedoes fired by the submarine I-58, sinking in 12 minutes. Out of a crew of approximately 1200 men, roughly 900 made it off but only 317 were rescued. The Pacific Fleet, not to mention the war, had gotten so big that keeping track of everything and everyone had become virtually impossible. No one knew she was missing until a PV-1 Privateer sited an oil slick 3.5 days later. The fleet ground staff had listed her as arriving at Leyte as scheduled without verifying she had arrived while three commands, for various reasons, did nothing upon receiving distress calls from the ship. No one was punished for the errors, incompetence and gross dereliction of duty beyond letters of reprimand or admonishment being placed in the personnel files of those involved, other than the ship's captain, who was court-martialed. His record was later cleared, long after he retired.
Do these two stories sound familiar? The AMA's office staff and elected officials have gotten so large, powerful and self important they forget the members, are not being held accountable for their unsatisfactory performance and still getting paid much more in salaries than the other residents in the area while the Pacific Fleet's ground staff totally lost track of a heavy cruiser, the officer that should have sounded an alarm to it's late arrival knew it was late but did nothing, three commands failed to act on distress calls from it and the destination site listed it as arrived at its destination a day after it had been sunk?
I see glaring similarities to these two stories. How does that saying go, "History is bound to repeat itself".
I'd be willing to bet that anyone that's served in the military knows how important it is to have people do their job and how being held accountable is really the only way to make sure that what needs to be done is actually getting done

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Old 02-13-2018, 12:39 PM
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Hydro Junkie, that was a good post.
I believe that somewhere along the line our AMA was taken over by a corporate mindset group of individuals. With so may hobby flyers being members because "they have to be", really the leaders haven't been under a very watchful eye. So I expect in the end they will say we only have our selves to blame. That seems to be the standard answer now days. It's apparently human nature to accept that someone else is looking out for our better interest.

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Old 02-13-2018, 01:48 PM
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And you're probably right about that. The problem now is that those with the "corporate mindset" are as worried about staying in their "elected" offices(as demonstrated by Mr Hanson's tampering with the last election) as much as they are in getting "pet projects" completed that they can't see where they are failing those that are actually paying the bills

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Old 02-13-2018, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Hydro Junkie View Post
And you're probably right about that. The problem now is that those with the "corporate mindset" are as worried about staying in their "elected" offices as much as they are in getting "pet projects" completed that they can't see where they are failing those that are actually paying the bills
I don't think the EC members feel any obligation to the member's needs. Spending is a measure of priorities, and nobody need look any further than the list above to see where their priorities lie. Money to improve where their membership flies is a fraction of what they spend on "office expenses" let alone all the "other" things HQ spends money on.
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Old 02-17-2018, 11:24 AM
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Just a thought, how about a sub forum in R/C Airplanes titled "Independent Flying Sites. There must be landowners around the country who, whether hobbyists or not, allow some of their land to be used to fly model aircraft independent of the AMA.
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Old 02-17-2018, 06:13 PM
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the county fairgrounds in Wichita Falls TX used to be that way, last time i was there 10-12 years ago.
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