A lot of new groups are starting up :D A great sign that we are growing! But not much point if no one joins them. So, talk about the new groups you've created or groups you think there should be.

I've started a few.

Young Atheists is geared toward students who are atheists. We're a powerful group and we should be working together.

California Atheists is self explanatory.

Bloggers has a purpose that's kind of complicated, and I really hope more people join. Basically, it's to help atheists out on the blogosphere, to strengthen our presence and through that strengthen the atheist presence. Voting for atheist blogs, commenting, linking, and other ways of helping eachother out will be coordinated.

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And to join a group, just click "start discussion." I know, it doesn't make any sense and hopefully will be fixed soon.
Thankfully, this has been fixed sometime after July 7, 2008.
I have a question: Do we really need two groups for Philadelphia? How about a group for 'Pennsylvania Atheists' instead? I live in PA south, smack dab between Pittsburgh and Philly, three hours (at least) either way. That's not really that close to either.

I know: why don't I start it? Because I don't know what it entails, and I have found by experience that I often find myself without time to be in charge of anything that's not absolutely vital to my life, and therefore, any responsibility I would have for the group might go ignored for some time. And no one likes that.

Help a sistah out, yo.
Okay, I started one, but for some reason, those not in Philly or Pittsburgh don't seem to want to connect. Shame, shame on Pennsylvanians. :)
Medical Atheists - I am in the psychiatric profession and was heavily involved in forensic psychiatry for a while (8 years was enough!) and recently there has been a push towards the NHS (UK) funding 'spiritual guuidance' for people and the never -ending interference of the religious in health matters really gets my goat- so I want to discuss it with people who are also involved in these fights / altercations/ debates /quandaries in healthcare
Undercover Atheists: For both atheists who haven't 'come out' yet, and atheists who are secret agents.
Please forgive me in advance. I will be stating and restating what may be obvious to some.

New groups, and groups in general, is a great idea for discussion. I do think more people would join groups if they were advertised on site (like maybe here), and that a group directory might also be helpful. I've found the search tool to be minimally adequate, but I don't think a lot of people use it.

People get carried away with good intentions and their desire to fill a need, so they create a group. When no group already exists, this is great. The downside of this can be that sometimes those groups already exist. For example, some folks recently created homeschooling groups (two new ones in one week), when an older one already existed. It would probably be easier on everyone who is interested in homeschooling to join the older one, (unless the administrator has not been on the site for ages), and delete the new groups.

The problem with there being more than one group for each subject/topic/location/issue, etc... is that usually people join the first group they find. So, (for example) we end up with three groups with 20 people each, when we could have one group with 60 people. More people in a group means that the group might just be a bit livelier.

The BGLTQAA (AKA queer, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, allies, questioning, etc...) groups (three out of four) are considering joining forces. *As I remember, in the three groups where this was discussed, the administrators/moderators have been long absent. Unfortunately, the Ning platform that A|N sits on does not allow groups to be combined. The only way to do that is to have everyone join one group, and manually transfer discussions, or link to them.

The problem with absent administrators/moderators is that if they decide to delete their profile, their groups go with them. This is the way Ning is coded, and at this time, there's nothing that can be done about that. It could change in the future.

In the meantime, I suggest that if people do combine groups, they do so in one group where the creator/admin. plans on checking in on a regular basis. It would also be good to nominate at least a few people in each group as moderators. I know it seems counterintuitive to create another group, but if the original creators/administrators haven't been heard from in ages, there's a greater chance that a group will survive if a few moderators pledge to share group responsibilities.

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