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Identity confidentiality concerns

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
Sorry, the internet can be a scary thing.

If you can't figure out who I am and where I work.... well.
post #2 of 26
The internet is scary for some. But not for all.

We all know Weems and where he lives, and works. We know Lisamarie, where her studio is, where she works and lives. The myriad of coaches for ESA, the people who moderate, the long time members.........we know about each other, meet each other, we are friends who ski together. I only know some people by their screen names, and we ski together. And that's cool, too!:

For most of us here, this is a family of sorts. I can't think of one instance where divulging personal information has gotten anyone into an unfavorable situation, but then again I don't know everyone's personal business.

Some of us have been here long enough to have met a hundred...or more...people who post here. It's not a fly by night chat room. There's accountability. Because of that, most of us feel comfortable being 'known'.

Frankly, I'm never comfortable with people who play it close to the vest. So, who are you again? I don't want to know your real name (who cares about that?), but where you ski could be a nice start.:
post #3 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonni
For most of us here, this is a family of sorts. I can't think of one instance where divulging personal information has gotten anyone into an unfavorable situation, :
An unnamed ski area once got very bent out of shape when an unnamed patroller commented here on an incident, even though it was info already released by the management. Who we are and where we patrol, mixed with some opinions can look like area policy.

The family is in the lounge. The ski areas are googling this page.
post #4 of 26
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the understanding Newfy.

Bonni, on another ski related forum there was a recent flap over one disgruntled member looking into anothers background and posting personal info that had nothing to do with the subject at hand.

The area I represent has its views, I have mine. There are some who may have trouble understanding that.

You want to know more, P.M. me and I will let you know what I can.

Thanks.
post #5 of 26
Bunion and Newfy, this is exactly the reason we (mod squad) considered setting up the Patrol Shack in the Supporter's Area (not to be confused with the lounge). It would be a moderated professional forum. The forums and articles within the Supporter Area are only available to subscribers. Your conversations are moderately more secure to the extent the casual public does not have access unless they subscribe to EpicSki. The drawback may be that it can reduce participation and outreach to the public.

This decision remains with the patrol affiliated membership. Please reply here or in the introductory thread your thoughts and requests. If moved to the Supporter Area, general members would need to become a supporter at the outrageous, but much appreciated sum, of $20. For a forum that is free to speak its collective mind it may be worth it. Please consider it carefully, and feel free to send me a PM if you are in any way uncomfortable discussing in a pubic forum.

It is disturbing that patrol is apparently being bound not to disclose information that may appear in the news. The controlled release of infomation from a ski area through a public relations outlet, and sanctions against employees for discussing otherwise public information is a disturbing trend. The open sharing of infomration that contributes to improved risk assessment and management as well as sharing in advanced rescue techniques, training mehods and the lessons learned from in-field experience are invaluable to raising the collective expertise of professionals, and awareness of the public. It is not bad for business, and any information discussed here would be discoverable through other means if there are legal concerns related to an incident. There is personal information related to patient care that a professional should not reveal, but for ski area management to censor a public discussion of the hazards and risks inherent in skiing, by supressing its professional, volunteer and safety personnel with first-hand knowledge, is a disturbing intrusion on freedom and exchange of information.
post #6 of 26
That might be a good idea as many of the patrollers I know on this forum are also supporters.
post #7 of 26
I don't know where I think it belongs. I doubt we'd lose too many posters, but we would lose a lot of the contact with the general population. I can always find a patroller to talk to, but some more casual, non-supporter type don't. It amazes me all the questions I get on the lifts.

On the other hand, I'm a bit gun shy in a completely public forum.
post #8 of 26
Patrolling is like working for the CIA now? Hush, hush, don't talk about anything??? :

Most patrollers are volunteers, and helpful, caring people or they wouldn't be doing the job. Keep this forum in the open and don't hide it away for 'pay for view' only. It's totally unnecessary.

Education about skiing is the goal here. Patrollers know what they can and can't say. TRUST THEM to monitor themselves.
post #9 of 26
Thread Starter 
I agree with you Bonni, the forum should be available to the entire public for free. I would rather cut a check to epic because I want to support them.

Working for any business requires some editing when you discuss anything that revolves around risk and potential liability. Its not about keeping secrets, it is about some folks not liking a viewpoint and using your statements made in a public forum to attack and/or discredit you.

In the case I cited about another forum, one member tried to identify another poster and go to the professional association he is affiliated with and do harm to his professional reputation.

I am not a volunteer, this is my lifes work and my profession, it is how I derive 100% of my income.

The internet can be a scary place.
post #10 of 26
I appreciate what I'm hearing here about the pros wanting to make their insight available to the public. Clearly there will simply be some issues that must be discussed more discretely. Looking at the existing threads in this forum (mainly taken from General Skiing Discussion Forum), the liability inherent in your work is obvious. Like in backcountry skiing we learn most from the mistakes and experiences of others. Whether we are recreational skiers or professionals, we have to use our judgement constantly in a hazardous outdoor environment. Being able to communicate with and help the less experienced general public, benefit from our many years of experience is one of the greatest potential values of this forum.

With that said, your right to preserve your identity and the degree of anonymity you choose, will be respected, and this forum can be moderated in a way that protects that choice. I think we can say a basic ground rule at these forums is that personal attacks, attacks on the reputation of another, or efforts to reveal personally identifying information about another member against their wishes, can and will, be dealt with. We tend to not interfere in posts unless it is pointed out. Please feel free to contact any of the "mod squad" with concerns, abuses or if personal information needs to be removed from a post.
post #11 of 26
There is no reason whatsoever that there can't be these discussions in both places. It is even possible to have a special "subscription-only" forum on EpicSki if there are those who would find that of value. The site and forums exist to serve the membership. If there's anything that we can do to provide additional value, we're certainly happy to do whatever is reasonable to do it.

I think having this forum here in the public is good and appropriate. I think that it may be useful for some patrollers to have a more private place to converse. If so, let us know?
post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirquerider
Bunion and Newfy, this is exactly the reason we (mod squad) considered setting up the Patrol Shack in the Supporter's Area (not to be confused with the lounge). It would be a moderated professional forum. The forums and articles within the Supporter Area are only available to subscribers. Your conversations are moderately more secure to the extent the casual public does not have access unless they subscribe to EpicSki. The drawback may be that it can reduce participation and outreach to the public.
First of all, I would limit what I say about patrol regardless of whether it was public or in the supporters area. certain details just shouldn't be talked about in an open forum.
As far as identifying myself, and I really hate agreeing with Bunion, it would be easy enough to look at my past posts and figure out who and where I am, but to actually put up a resume in one post, why make it easy for some quack. BTW, who here didn't get a spam E-mail last week.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cirquerider
It is disturbing that patrol is apparently being bound not to disclose information that may appear in the news
Some of us are full time, most are part time, but either way, we're employees of the mountainand organization, and anything said, regardless of the forum, could be construed as "official" and thereby tken out of context and used the wrong way. The news articles "hopefully" came from the correct spokesman for the organization. ANY company I've ever worked for in my professional life makes this quite apparent, to the effect that I've been to seminars, and receive at least yearly E-mails re-iterating this fact.
post #13 of 26
I can understand not supplying personal information or identifing your workplace.

But sometimes it's nice to know the geographical region where the poster lives. Under location a person could say: New England, Mid-Atlantic, Sierras, the Great Northwest, or some general term.
post #14 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonni
The internet is scary for some. But not for all.

We all know Weems and where he lives, and works. We know Lisamarie, where her studio is, where she works and lives. The myriad of coaches for ESA, the people who moderate, the long time members.........we know about each other, meet each other, we are friends who ski together. I only know some people by their screen names, and we ski together. And that's cool, too!:
Bonnie, patrollers, by nature of their roles, receives much more ligitious scrutiny than coaches and instructors. Whereas the generally the worst a coach or instructor has to deal with is an unsatisfied customer, patrollers deal with area safety issues and injuries. As an instructor, a bad day means the customer wants his money back. As a patroller, each injury case, and I can have half a dozen a day, is a potential lawsuit. I can understand why ski area management and patrollers don't want to be too specific in discussing certain sensitive issues and thereby exposing themselves legally.
post #15 of 26
Thread Starter 
and I really hate agreeing with Bunion.................

Get to know me, you may find we have much more in common than not.:
post #16 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by josseph
Bonnie, patrollers, by nature of their roles, receives much more ligitious scrutiny than coaches and instructors. Whereas the generally the worst a coach or instructor has to deal with is an unsatisfied customer, patrollers deal with area safety issues and injuries. As an instructor, a bad day means the customer wants his money back. As a patroller, each injury case, and I can have half a dozen a day, is a potential lawsuit. I can understand why ski area management and patrollers don't want to be too specific in discussing certain sensitive issues and thereby exposing themselves legally.
at least with the larger companies, we (instructors) receive quite a bit of training in avoiding litigation.
post #17 of 26
Well, some of my personal information is available on NSP.org and on my area's site without a password to see it. It is also available on the EMaRI site and there is a link to that site on the Eastern Division site.

Here's what we could do...I'll work on setting up a poll, that way everyone can maintain their anonimity (spelling?), but we can know some of the qualifications of the people here (no names or specific areas attached).

My data is out there already.
post #18 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by josseph
Bonnie, patrollers, by nature of their roles, receives much more ligitious scrutiny than coaches and instructors. Whereas the generally the worst a coach or instructor has to deal with is an unsatisfied customer, patrollers deal with area safety issues and injuries. As an instructor, a bad day means the customer wants his money back. As a patroller, each injury case, and I can have half a dozen a day, is a potential lawsuit. I can understand why ski area management and patrollers don't want to be too specific in discussing certain sensitive issues and thereby exposing themselves legally.
Ya think? I guess you've never been responsible for a handfull of small children for an entire day on a ski slope, and had to deal with kids doing things like falling out of chair lifts on your watch (never happened to me, thank God), or knocking their teeth out when they fell face first onto your ski tips (did happen to me).

I understand that patrollers are constantly involved in situations where liability may be an issue, but to not be willing to say where you work seems oddly evasive, as if you don't like where you work. Bob Barnes leaves no doubt about his location or role. I get the impression that ski patrols have this handed-down mentality that they are somehow responsible for their ski areas. Partollers assist in cleaning up after an accident, not usually creating the accident. How do you come to the conclusion that "patrollers, by nature of their roles, receives much more ligitious scrutiny than coaches and instructors"?

I hope that didn't come off as rude, I'm just curious as to how patrollers feel they are somehow more suseptable to litigation, except to be there as a witness or to testify as to the aftermath.

odd.:
post #19 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnH
Ya think? I guess you've never been responsible for a handfull of small children for an entire day on a ski slope, and had to deal with kids doing things like falling out of chair lifts on your watch (never happened to me, thank God), or knocking their teeth out when they fell face first onto your ski tips (did happen to me).

Partollers assist in cleaning up after an accident, not usually creating the accident. How do you come to the conclusion that "patrollers, by nature of their roles, receives much more ligitious scrutiny than coaches and instructors"?

I hope that didn't come off as rude, I'm just curious as to how patrollers feel they are somehow more suseptable to litigation, except to be there as a witness or to testify as to the aftermath.
Well, when one of your kids fall out of the chairlift or knock out their teeth falling face first onto your ski tips, guess what? The ski patrol gets involved. If Mr. Customer runs into a piece of mountain crew equipment, the ski patrol gets involved. If any injury happens on the mountain, regardless of the cause, the ski patrol is involved.

The patrol makes the judgement call on severity of injury; we make the judgement call on how to transport patient; we are the ones responsible for making sure all witness depositions are taken; we are the ones who make the judgement call on how and to whom the injured party is released. On your average instructor day, the majority of the public you attend to comes out unscathed. On the patroller's average day, the majority of the public he deals with are injured. And it is the injured party or his family who seeks litigation.

In my area, as I am sure in most areas, all injury incident reports are assembled by the ski patrol. So if Mr. Public's kid gets his teeth knocked out on your skis, guess who is involved aside from you the instructor? We the patrol file the incident report and collect your statements. If Mr. Public is looking to lay blame, guess what his attorney will seek first? The Patrol's filed incident report. Aside from you the instructor and the ski school, the patrol will often be named because Mr. Public will also allege that the patrol did not act with sufficient haste and therefore worsened the injury. It is our incident report, and the meticulous way we filed it, that will exonerate you, the ski school, the ski area, and the ski patrol. It is also what we said to Mr. Public when we informed him of his son's condition and options, that will be on the line, because it will be our patrol room that Mr. Public will be visiting to retrieve his kid with his teeth in a plastic baggie. Now tell me how you can think the patrol is not in the cross hairs with each and every incident in a ski resort?

One last tidbit. If a kid falls and fractures his femur while taking a lesson from you, that would be your highlight (or lowlight) of the day, and quite possibly the entire season. Guess what, taking care of that kid with a fracture femur, rendering emergency care and transporting him are just part of a routine day's work of a patroller.
post #20 of 26
Joe,

As I said, I understand that Patrol gets involved with all of those. What I don't understand is why you feel that you shouldn't divulge the name of the resort you work at, as if you would somehow be held liable for something. Patrol gets very involved, indeed, but not from the liability end (often - maybe an injured gest wants to claim you made their injury worse). Bob Peters doesn't seem to think it's an issue. How come so many others do? (honest question).
post #21 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnH
As I said, I understand that Patrol gets involved with all of those. What I don't understand is why you feel that you shouldn't divulge the name of the resort you work at, as if you would somehow be held liable for something. Patrol gets very involved, indeed, but not from the liability end (often - maybe an injured gest wants to claim you made their injury worse).
Often that is exactly it. JohnnyQ suffers an injury, but his mother insists he is okay, for example. At his mother's insistence, patrol reluctantly releases Johnny to his mother. Then mother discovers Johnny was a whole lot more hurt than she thought. She gets pissed and blames the patrol for letting her take her son.

Many of patroller issues involves area safety policies and procedures, the pros and cons of these policies. If an accident happens, I don't want to be the one whom they cite as pointing out procedural deficiencies of the area in a public forum, and used it as a basis for a lawsuite against the area. For example, I don't want to discuss the suitability of opening or closing a trail here. Should that trail be open under questionable circumstances and someone is injured on it, I don't want to be the one they cite as warning that the area and the ski patrol should have known better.

Discussions of pros and cons of running a tail rope in transporting a patient carries significantly greater risks for injury/safety liability than discussions of pros and cons of teaching a wedge, for example. Sure I would discuss these issues, but I will not discuss specifics and naming areas and patrols specifically.
post #22 of 26
Well.... This thread's a COMPLETE WASTE! Thanks for keeping it on topic. Aceman
post #23 of 26
I moved the posts that were off-topic to the "Stand up and be Counted" into a secondary topic thread. I hope you will agree that those who want to share their affiliation should feel free to do so. If there are concerns with the way I have split the therad, please send me a PM.

____________________________
Tom
post #24 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnH View Post
...

Bob Peters doesn't seem to think it's an issue. How come so many others do? (honest question).

...
I'm just not very bright.

In all seriousness, I'm not a patroller. I'm a very part-time instructor and it's not exactly like my life would be seriously impacted if I were to lose the job. If they fired me tomorrow, about the worst thing that would happen is that I wouldn't have a handy place to keep my skis and boots at the hill.

Some companies take a VERY dim view of employees giving out sensitive information on a public forum. I can understand a full-time patroller being nervous about being identified with their home resort. For instance, would they might have to put a disclaimer in their signature about not speaking for their employer? Also, something they might innocently say about their resort in a post today could somehow be subject to discovery in a future, seemingly unrelated lawsuit.

I don't know for certain that any of that could actually happen, but I can understand being concerned about it in the US environment.
post #25 of 26
This seems to me to be much ado about nothing. As a patroller, I have a duty to keep certain information confidential. Thus, regardless of whether it is in a subscriber only or a public forum, I am not going to disclose confidential information.

As far as any complaints I may have with the organizations I am affiliated with, I am not post them here, because it would serve no purpose. Since no one on the forum can resolve my problems. I will take them to someone with the authority to resolve the issues.

That being said, I think this forum can be helpful addressing general issues and answering questions.
post #26 of 26
I would not post any differently in a private or public forum on EpicSki. Anything else would be unprofessional IMHO.

I will not participate in discussions that should contain confidential information. Obviously as a care giver, PT information must be kept confidential. Another example skier or snowboarder deaths is not something I would discuss out of respect for the family of the deceased. Posting a link to skier death story in a paper is acceptable. Discussion about if a helmet would have saved that life is a topic I have seen discussed many times in a public forum, which is not respectful of the friends of relatives. IMHO. Discussions about ski area management decisions on trail openings and closing decisions is again something that is best left on the hill and not in a public or private forum.
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