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Groups is a 2018 upgrade feature. Only registered site members can view (or post) in Groups.

What is the purpose of the Groups feature?

Groups allow like-minded members with a shared interest to have a dedicated area they can meet and discuss in.

How is that different from sub-forums?

  1. Groups have varying levels of privacy. A group can be:
    1. Open - all MyPTSD members can join, read, and participate.
    2. Read-Only - all MyPTSD members can read/see group content, only approved group members can participate.
    3. Semi-Private - you have to be a Group member to read or post. Non-group members can only see who is in the group, and the list of thread titles.
    4. Private - Completely private, including group member list. This option is allocated to the Private Supporters Group only, no-one else.
  2. Members in a group are like-minded: they want to be there and talk about that common interest. To be in a group, you must have a real-life investment and connection to the topic, not just a passing interest.

By and large, MyPTSD is open to all. People with PTSD, or who aren't sure if they have PTSD. People who are curious about PTSD, living with or dating someone with PTSD, researching an aspect of PTSD. The site has an open-door policy, asking only that the guest/member have some connection to PTSD. We have sub-forums that set a topic, and then threads that fall into the umbrella of that topic. Nearly every area is open to everyone and it can get noisy, which can make it hard to find other members with experiences/concerns similar to your own.

Groups exist so that members of this community - established members (more on that in a moment), with something distinct that they have in common - can get together and discuss various aspects of that commonality. Members who don't share that thing don't need to be in that particular Group.

How do you define 'established member'?

An established member has been around the site long enough for the Admins to have a sense of who they are through how they post. We'll be looking at posting history, profiles, and activity in areas of the board relevant to the group. Every individual is different - we aren't using any set criteria such as number of posts, length of membership, rule infractions, etc.

How do Groups get started?

Members contact Admins with information about the group they'd like to start. If it's a good idea, we'll set it up.

What's a good idea for a Group?

A good idea will be broad enough to support multiple conversations, yet specific enough that it won't be relevant to just anyone - only to people with a real connection to the subject. Parenting in a PTSD home, Living with chronic illness, Men's issues, Military (active service and veterans), CBT/DBT discussion group...these are just examples of groups I can imagine, and I'm certain there are many others.

How will you decide who can join and what the privacy level is?

We will take into account the nature of the potential topics, how relevant it is that members be vetted prior to joining, and what level of privacy is needed to fulfill the group's stated purpose.

Who moderates groups?

The Groups feature uses some different terminology. There is a Group Owner, and there are Group Moderator(s). Group owner will always be a MyPTSD Admin, simply for technical reasons. To start, each group will be paired with a specific MyPTSD staff member fitting the group criteria, in order to provide support; but eventually, I'd like to see the member who made the proposal become the Group Mod.

The truth is, if a Group is working well it will require little to no moderation, because the members will want it to work. Groups rely on the honor system. Members self-select into them, and should do so intending to make a positive contribution. There will be zero tolerance for trolling in Groups. Trolling or spamming a Group will have consequences ranging from being banned from all groups, to being removed from the site.

Here's what a group is not:

  • A popularity contest or breeding ground for cliques. Not interested.
  • A replacement for the rest of the forum. Groups should add to the site experience, not substitute for it.
  • A place where the rules are different. All MyPTSD rules and policies apply.

How do I propose a group?

Go to Contact Us, use the thread prefix 'groups', please.

Suggest a name for the group, and answer the following:

  • Who the group is for (what sub-set of this community can join)
  • What the group is for (the purpose it serves, the need it meets)
  • How members can join (whether open, or require approval)
  • Privacy level, and why.
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