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  1. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alligator View Post
    They should slap that logo on a bottle of champagne. That'll generate a ton of revenue for multiple parties.
    And sell them atop Katahdin along with BSP flutes!

  2. #42
    Registered User Elaikases's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickb View Post
    i expect you are in the vast majority.
    Indeed. I can't see it harming anything or really mattering at all.

    Would anyone use the logo for a buying decision when hiking?

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    What happened to my post on this??? I was pretty sure I saw it posted, was it deleted?

    I do not think it is a good idea. It puts ATC in the realm and thoughts of a commercial agency selling and even endorsing products. On a limited basis, such as hiking socks, it does seem like 'a portion of this sale goes to help this cause' type of thing, and selling patches and pins. But outside the product line of items directly related to hiking and the trail it starts to look a bit more like a commercial entity.

    This is potentially problematic with volunteering and volunteer based hiking clubs who do maintain the AT. As ATC is seen to be more like a commercial entity, the incentive to volunteer, for no pay, decreases and builds resentment. People wanted to be treated fairly for their work, if it si done for a money making entity they should rightfully get paid, that is not an agency to volunteer for. Some people who have the heart to help will find other trail projects to work on.

    Add to that that some people will disagree with the use of alcohol related to the trail and see this as a ATC endorsement of drinking. That may be a turn off.

    It also seems to go against a founding statement of the AT [COLOR=rgba(81, 81, 81, 0.901960784313726)]“A footpath for those who seek fellowship with the wilderness.” and the ATC seems to have moved away from that mission statement and has adopted one that is more inline with the AT of today by adding "[/COLOR]and priceless cultural heritage", which indicates a vastly different trail, and a different direction then the original mission.

    (sorry for the font size, copy and paste didn't work as intended)

  4. #44
    Hopeful Hiker QHShowoman's Avatar
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    Having a local winery (it's right down the road from Harpers Ferry) create an "Appalachian Train" wine, with some of the proceeds going to the ATC does not constitute a "partnership" (which assumes that the company has some sort of say in how the organization conducts their business).

    This is what's called "cause-related marketing" and it has become increasingly more and more common with non-profits as a means to generate additional revenue with no cost to the organization (like all of the "pink" stuff you see that benefits breast cancer orgs).
    The non-profits usually do not seek out these sorts of things, rather they're approached by the company and the organization usually has some say as to whether they want to be a beneficiary or not. Sometimes, they're not asked at all, which can be problematic if the product being marketed is at odds with the organization.

    It's becoming more and more difficult to raise money for non-profits through traditional means, so if an organization has savvy fundraisers with strong community outreach that allows them to take advantage of such opportunities to get free marketing for their organization and generate revenue at no cost to the organization, all the better.
    you left to walk the appalachian trail
    you can feel your heart as smooth as a snail
    the mountains your darlings
    but better to love than have something to scale


    -Girlyman, "Hold It All At Bay"

  5. #45
    Registered User soilman's Avatar
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    There are a number of products in the market place that carry the name "Appalachian Trail" and the ATC doesn't get a dime. I remember back years ago when the ATC publication changed from AT News to Journeys and they began accepting advertisements. This was controversial. Let's face it, it costs money to maintain and protect the trail.
    More walking, less talking.

  6. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by QHShowoman View Post
    Having a local winery (it's right down the road from Harpers Ferry) create an "Appalachian Train" wine, with some of the proceeds going to the ATC does not constitute a "partnership" (which assumes that the company has some sort of say in how the organization conducts their business).

    This is what's called "cause-related marketing" and it has become increasingly more and more common with non-profits as a means to generate additional revenue with no cost to the organization (like all of the "pink" stuff you see that benefits breast cancer orgs).
    The non-profits usually do not seek out these sorts of things, rather they're approached by the company and the organization usually has some say as to whether they want to be a beneficiary or not. Sometimes, they're not asked at all, which can be problematic if the product being marketed is at odds with the organization.

    It's becoming more and more difficult to raise money for non-profits through traditional means, so if an organization has savvy fundraisers with strong community outreach that allows them to take advantage of such opportunities to get free marketing for their organization and generate revenue at no cost to the organization, all the better.
    Even though the non-profits are approached, it doesn't mean that they have to or should accept the co-branding. The proliferation of pink ribbons his time of year is a good example of co-branding gone awry. For one thing, the ubiquity makes its really nothing more than background noise and gives the appearance of an empty gesture. More than that, it can go wrong, too. I recall the pink ribbon logo appearing on buckets of Kentucky Fried Chicken a few years ago. Ironic that an organization supposedly interested in women's health chose KFC as a partner and allowed their ribbon to be placed on millions of big buckets of fried food - given that heart disease kills more women than cancers. Done judiciously, it can work well for all parties, but in this case, it just looked hypocritical. Hopefully the ATC doesn't go down that road.

  7. #47
    Registered User Lyle's Avatar
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    Most trail organizations would LOVE to have a quarter of the AT's budget. The ATC has expanded the scope of their activities well beyond building and maintaining a footpath. They have bought in to the corporate mantra that constant and never-ending growth is necessary. Since the trail is, for the most part, already built, they find any number of new places to spend their money, many in the name of needing MORE money, and enabling that goal.

    If activities and ambitions were limited to maintaining the trail, licensing the name would not be necessary.

  8. #48
    Hopeful Hiker QHShowoman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lyle View Post
    Most trail organizations would LOVE to have a quarter of the AT's budget. The ATC has expanded the scope of their activities well beyond building and maintaining a footpath. They have bought in to the corporate mantra that constant and never-ending growth is necessary. Since the trail is, for the most part, already built, they find any number of new places to spend their money, many in the name of needing MORE money, and enabling that goal.

    If activities and ambitions were limited to maintaining the trail, licensing the name would not be necessary.

    Can you be more specific? Which activities are they pursuing that are beyond their scope?
    you left to walk the appalachian trail
    you can feel your heart as smooth as a snail
    the mountains your darlings
    but better to love than have something to scale


    -Girlyman, "Hold It All At Bay"

  9. #49
    Registered User Lyle's Avatar
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    Just a few, off the top of my head, since I no longer follow the ATC activities very closely:

    Building ever more elaborate trail hotels (colloquially called shelters)
    Declaring and promoting "Trail Towns"
    Teacher education courses and sponsoring various AT in the Classroom events

  10. #50
    Registered User lyagooshka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QHShowoman View Post
    Can you be more specific? Which activities are they pursuing that are beyond their scope?
    I don't think I would be offended about the ATC getting a few bucks (and some name recognition) from things like wine or beer or trail towns.
    Where I would REALLY be upset is if I saw them getting into political issues.
    I don't care if it's "my" candidate or not, or if they're on "my" side of the issue.
    Stay away from politics, unless it directly affects the trail.
    IMHO.

  11. #51
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    Why is promoting education beyond the ATC scope?
    Hiking the AT is “pointless.” What life is not “pointless”? Is it not pointless to work paycheck to paycheck just to conform?.....I want to make my life less ordinary. AWOL

  12. #52
    Registered User Lyle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AfterParty View Post
    Why is promoting education beyond the ATC scope?
    This will be my last reply to this thread. I see no point in arguing, it is my feeling, and the reason I have not renewed my membership for several years now.

    It is not just promoting, they are spending money creating curriculum, running workshops for teachers, I assume providing staff time for presentations, etc. It is watering down the funds that should be going toward maintaining the trail, so they need to ever increase the amount of money they collect. That was the entire point in changing the name of the organization - to facilitate fundraising. I just see them as becoming way too interested in maintaining the bureaucracy, and less and less concerned with maintaining the trail - getting a lot of employees and numerous offices (visitor centers). My opinion is that the money could be much better spent, and they would need much less of it if they did less non-maintenance projects.

  13. #53
    Hopeful Hiker QHShowoman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lyagooshka View Post
    I don't think I would be offended about the ATC getting a few bucks (and some name recognition) from things like wine or beer or trail towns.
    Where I would REALLY be upset is if I saw them getting into political issues.
    I don't care if it's "my" candidate or not, or if they're on "my" side of the issue.
    Stay away from politics, unless it directly affects the trail.
    IMHO.

    Legally, the ATC can't promote political issues as a 501c3 organization. They may be able to do a limited amount of lobbying - i.e. asking legislators to vote one way or another on issues that directly impact the trail - but that's a different thing than promoting a candidate for election.
    you left to walk the appalachian trail
    you can feel your heart as smooth as a snail
    the mountains your darlings
    but better to love than have something to scale


    -Girlyman, "Hold It All At Bay"

  14. #54
    Hopeful Hiker QHShowoman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lyle View Post
    This will be my last reply to this thread. I see no point in arguing, it is my feeling, and the reason I have not renewed my membership for several years now.

    It is not just promoting, they are spending money creating curriculum, running workshops for teachers, I assume providing staff time for presentations, etc. It is watering down the funds that should be going toward maintaining the trail, so they need to ever increase the amount of money they collect. That was the entire point in changing the name of the organization - to facilitate fundraising. I just see them as becoming way too interested in maintaining the bureaucracy, and less and less concerned with maintaining the trail - getting a lot of employees and numerous offices (visitor centers). My opinion is that the money could be much better spent, and they would need much less of it if they did less non-maintenance projects.
    I think this is a pretty short-sighted perspective and there's probably more to those things than you realized -- like, the education programs may be fulfilling a component of a grant they received. Often times, when you apply for grants, there are certain stipulations you have to fulfill. Perhaps a funder offered $500,000 for trail maintenance, but stipulated that the grantee must include a curriculum program to bring awareness about the trail to K-12 students? Or perhaps it's to fulfill a joint allocation requirement -- which helps organizations to offset fundraising costs by using part of the funds they raise for educational activities?

    The ATC is responsible for maintaining almost 2,200 miles of trail...with the aid of a single F/T NPS Ranger. It's foolish to think that much trail could be maintained and preserved with a single office and minimal employees. You can't run an organization of that breadth solely on volunteer power and in order to hire paid employees, you need to be able to pay them...thus the need for fundraising. And compared to other organizations of comparable size, the ATC does a good job keeping their fundraising costs at a minimum.

    Sometimes, you just need to separate your "feelings" from the facts...
    you left to walk the appalachian trail
    you can feel your heart as smooth as a snail
    the mountains your darlings
    but better to love than have something to scale


    -Girlyman, "Hold It All At Bay"

  15. #55
    ME => GA 19AT3 rickb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QHShowoman View Post
    The ATC is responsible for maintaining almost 2,200 miles of trail...with the aid of a single F/T NPS Ranger. It's foolish to think that much trail could be maintained and preserved with a single office and minimal employees. You can't run an organization of that breadth solely on volunteer power and in order to hire paid employees, you need to be able to pay them...thus the need for fundraising. And compared to other organizations of comparable size, the ATC does a good job keeping their fundraising costs at a minimum.

    Sometimes, you just need to separate your "feelings" from the facts...
    It is fair to observe that the ATC's payroll has more than doubled in the past decade -- to about $70,000 per week, as has the salary paid to its executive director.

    That may be a reflection of great things -- in that the ATC has marshaled more resources and more professional leadership to bear to help preserve the trail-- but considering the cluster **** surrounding the over crowded campsites and overflowing latrines at the beginning of thru hiker season, such "feelings" are understandable, I think.

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