You would probably be surprised at the amount of messages I get on facebook from people I don’t know that well or have never met.
I sometimes feel that they kind of look on me as the court of last resort.
Many times before there is a team split off (as there was recently in Chico, CA) I hear from a participant in The Great Sport who feels he or she is being treated unfairly.
Now you all pay to play, so it is really different from if you were trying out for a sport or team and the coaches felt you didn’t have the talent to make it. That is not what modern Derby is all about. You can obviously participate on some level, but still have to conform to league rules. I understand that. But just last week I heard from someone who was in such distress because she felt she was being ostracized, humiliated and her friends were told not to associate with her because those in charge of the league were coming down on her.
There are two sides to every issue, and that is just hers. But almost every association and sport team has similar issues. The question is, how to deal with it?
I am sure many of the splits are because of personality or power issues, so what is the answer. Personally, I would like to see each small market build around 1 league, but since no one is “franchising” Roller Derby and that is not what WTFDA does, there is no obvious solution.
Roller Derby has such a huge period of growth ahead and most of the leagues have been in existence a very short time. It often takes years to establish yourself, get your skaters properly trained, build a following, and have a chance of success.
You all must face these problems often….how do you deal with them? And how do you protect the people who choose to play with you?
No matter what the enterprise, it is the relationship between those involved that matters.