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From: James Brooks <hirundo@tricon.net>

At 04:51 PM 1/12/99 EST, you wrote:
>From: StorYlade@aol.com
>Lo All,
>I've been pretty much out of the loop, iris wise, since the fall of 95.  I
>understand that the over-all AIS membership is way down, maybe a thousand or
>more.  Is this true?  If so, does anyone have an idea why this has happened?
>For several years, we gained about as many as we lost and stayed at a fairly
>stable number.  Ideas?

My guess would be membership services. I guess there has been improvements
in the former six month delay in receiving books that one orders, but
service (or the lack of it) takes other directions. I let my membership
lapse last June, which is a busy time for all of us, so when I renewed this
fall I asked to have the two copies of the magazine that I missed sent to
me. I got a response that henceforward memberships would only follow the
caldendar year, so I would have to buy the ones I missed as back copies. If
it were any other organization, I would have dropped out right there. I was
once six months late in renewing National Geographic, but they immediately
sent me all the missing back issues. Now that's service!
2. Too many organizations. If you love all the various types of iris you
have a horrendous amount of dues to pay to belong to HIPS, the TB Iris
Society, each othe the medians and so on. Why could we not have one first
class organization to serve the entire world of iris?
3. Coming from that, I've renewed twice with HIPS and never gotten anything
from them. First they sent my check back because it didn't have my name and
address printed on it, then I sent them another $12, and haven't heard
These are the kinds of things that drive people away. Faced with a similar
situation, the National Storytelling Association here in Jonesborough split
into two organizations, one of which is devoted entirely to membership
services. Perhaps there is a message here.

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