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Old 10-18-2011, 11:29 AM   #321
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MBmbstreamer's post above does not apply to the Denco amendment, which is being approved by the units using a different method. Please disregard it.
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Old 10-18-2011, 02:42 PM   #322
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My apologies. The post was intended for the full revision thread. With 3 different changes being discussed, I lose focus occasionally!
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Old 10-23-2011, 10:59 AM   #323
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Talking Wbcci constitution amended!

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Originally Posted by HowieE View Post
Lets not declare a lose this early. It is my understanding that this approach has never been tried before.
Yes, it's true that both PIP Don Shaffer and PIP Beu wrote that the WBCCI Constitution had never been amended using Section 1 of Article XVI. But they were wrong.

Sorry, about the title of this post if I made you think the DENCO motion has passed, but in 1979 the Constitution was amended using the same approach. In fact, it was headline news for Vol. 25 - No. 1 issue of The Caravanner (Spring, 1979). Open the attached PDF to read the whole article.

Here is a quote from the article:

"Specifically, it is Section 1 of Article V of the WBCCI Constitution that has been changed to read:"

"Adults owning an Airstream trailer or Airstream Motorhome shall be eligible to apply for membership and upon acceptance they shall become members."

"This amendment was proposed by the Wyoming Unit of the WBCCI and forwarded to the president of each unit on October 24. 1978. Each unit then had the opportunity to vote on the proposal."

"Club members got a chance to see the motorhome at recreational vehicle shows, at Airstream rallies. and through product literature."

"According to the provisions in the WBCCI constitution, the amendment would only be accepted if two-thirds of the units approved it within a one-year deadline."

"But it took only half the allotted time. because in April the two thirds acceptance was received, and the constitution was ratified."

"'Overall, I would say the motorhome has been favorably accepted,' comments B.W. "Tex" Barker, Executive Secretary of the WBCCl."
Attached Files
File Type: pdf scan0004.pdf (126.4 KB, 53 views)
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Old 10-23-2011, 06:24 PM   #324
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Forrest,

Fascinating. '78 - '79 was about the time WBCCI membership started its 30-year decline.
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Old 10-23-2011, 06:31 PM   #325
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Coincidence? When did Airstream Corp. completely separate from WBCCI? This is also the time which Thor purchased Airstream from Beatrice.

Bill

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Forrest,

Fascinating. '78 - '79 was about the time WBCCI membership started its 30-year decline.
.
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Old 10-25-2011, 08:11 PM   #326
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Back in the Hunt!

Methinks Forrest is back in the hunt!
Good news for us all. !
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Old 10-26-2011, 01:20 PM   #327
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Methinks Forrest is back in the hunt!
Good news for us all. !
Well, perhaps unintentionally. I've been given boxes of documents from a deceased International Officer. A lot of it is flotsam (receipts, personal notes, travel plans, etc), but there are some very revealing letters and historical documents that shed some light on what transpired from the Seventies to the Eighties. But I'm finding that I have to go through page by page, so it's going to take some time to organize (scan) and analyze the information.

One thing that is already standing out though is that there was early (mid-Seventies) opposition and protest to the increasingly bureaucratic nature of the club, such as increased travel expenses for International Officers, and tension between the WBCCI and Airstream Inc.

Attempts to stop the decline were numerous... for instance, it was thought that creating a Member at Large category would reverse membership loss. Instead, in retrospect, it created another controversy leading to even more dissatisfaction.
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Old 10-26-2011, 01:36 PM   #328
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The membership at large category would have been a positive step, IF they had not put a premium charge on it. While most would probably have joined a unit at some point no one likes attempts to force them to do it.
Of course on the bright side, membership is only down 24,000 or so since the mid 70's
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Old 10-26-2011, 01:52 PM   #329
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Coincidence? When did Airstream Corp. completely separate from WBCCI? This is also the time which Thor purchased Airstream from Beatrice.

Bill
I think the complete separation was really only a couple of years ago. Otherwise, it is difficult to pin down a specific date earlier than that because support varied so much even from one year to the next. At one point, Beatrice appeared to totally stop its support, but then there was a reconciliation of one sort or another. The same thing happened with THOR. So, the withdrawal of support happened in stages.

Basically, and I'm only partly theorizing here, Airstream Inc. was, from time to time, very frustrated with the WBCCI, in part because there was opposition, sometimes from the membership and other times from the leadership, to new Airstream products. The Argosy, the B-Van, the classic MH, the wide body ("flat roof"), the "Squarestream", etc, etc were all products Airstream wanted the club to accept and yet each one was a battle.

And that makes sense, doesn't it? Why should a company support a club that doesn't accept or promote its new products?

On the other hand, viewed strictly from a timeline basis, it does appear that everytime Airstream introduced a new product, it or the controversy caused by it, led to additional loss of members. However, I don't think it was that simple. Certainly, it is part of the equation, but other things factor in, such as the IRS ruling that the relationship between Airstream (a business-for-profit) and the WBCCI (a non-profit) was way too cozy.

Simply put, I'm coming to believe that the problems with the Club are, in large part, an inheritance - the result of the Club having initially been a company club, but then having to transform itself into something else. What that something else is going to be is the big question. History shows us that a lot of things - governments, clubs, fish, and dinosaurs - are not able to adapt to a change in their environment.
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Old 10-26-2011, 02:36 PM   #330
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A Most Egregious Policy

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Originally Posted by Forrest View Post
.

One thing that is already standing out though is that there was early (mid-Seventies) opposition and protest to the increasingly bureaucratic nature of the club, such as increased travel expenses for International Officers, and tension between the WBCCI and Airstream Inc.

Attempts to stop the decline were numerous...
The policy of reimbursing International Officers for travel expenses is the most divisive policy one can imagine in a "volunteer" organization.
It creates class distinctions and encourages the psuedo elitism so destructive to our organization.
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Old 11-03-2011, 11:02 PM   #331
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Of course on the bright side, membership is only down 24,000 or so since the mid 70's
FYI, in 1973 membership was 24,894, but by 1980 it had dropped to 18,816. Anyone know what it is now?

I was reading a report regarding the 1981 Mid-Winter meeting, here's an interesting passage:

The Membership Committee had two proposals to help increase the membership roster.
1. A Life Time Membership.
2. A New-member Contest.
The Board adopted the Contest, and it will run from April 1,1981 to April 1, 1982. It is anticipated that all present members will solicit freinds and strangers, who own Airstreams, to become members of WBCCI. The membership of our Club now stands at 18,816 at the end of 1980, which is 87% of the previous years same date total. The loss in revenue produced by the dues will be $40,000 under budget if our membership does not exceed 20,000 by June 30th.

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Old 11-04-2011, 04:32 AM   #332
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Quote:
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forrest View Post
FYI, in 1973 membership was 24,894, but by 1980 it had dropped to 18,816. Anyone know what it is now?

I was reading a report regarding the 1981 Mid-Winter meeting, here's an interesting passage:

The Membership Committee had two proposals to help increase the membership roster.
1. A Life Time Membership.
2. A New-member Contest.
The Board adopted the Contest, and it will run from April 1,1981 to April 1, 1982. It is anticipated that all present members will solicit freinds and strangers, who own Airstreams, to become members of WBCCI. The membership of our Club now stands at 18,816 at the end of 1980, which is 87% of the previous years same date total. The loss in revenue produced by the dues will be $40,000 under budget if our membership does not exceed 20,000 by June 30th.


Obviously a long standing and serious problem.. While I don't have exact membership numbers for the 70's the membership probably actually peaked in 1976 based on International rally attendance so the drop in membership by 1980 could be described as serious to say the least. The most recent I saw was around the 6000 area. We are in a new renewal cycle now so probably the next reasonably accurate number would be available around January 2012.
I would not bet on an increase.
( have heard a 30,000 figure for 1976 but can't confirm it)
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Old 11-04-2011, 09:09 AM   #333
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What I find interesting are the circumstances and schemes that were tried to reverse the trend. Life membership, Members at Large, BVan, motorhomes, were primarily actions taken to attract and keep members and all failed in that respect. That provides prospective for the current effort to bring in THOR motorhomes. The argument being used is the same as what was heard thirty and even forty years ago. It didn't accomplish its mission then and won't now.
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Old 11-04-2011, 10:19 AM   #334
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Based on: 100,000 Airstreams originally made, 60,000 still in existence, and 5,900 members last year, Less than 10% of the Airstreams owners think that joining the club is worth the cost of the dues. We will not solve the membership problem until we revise our programs and member benefit package to address needs and desires of the new generation of Airstream owners. We still have not conducted a survey of prospective members to determine what they want.
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Old 11-04-2011, 04:25 PM   #335
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I seem to remember that long ago when someone bought an Airstream, a WBCCI membership came with it. I don't know if it was for one year or more. That would certainly boost numbers for a while, but if people didn't see much benefit, they wouldn't put their own money on the line. Not everyone wants to go to rallies or on caravans. The original group was created to promote sales, but eventually the company cut off support.

There was a recession in 1973 and '74, so numbers probably dropped because of that too. Since the early '80's, middle class incomes have stagnated and then started dropping. That also affects memberships in organizations.

Internet organizations are doing well, traditional ones are not. I don't see much of a future for the WBCCI unless it changes to an internet based one. That space is already taken by the Forum, TAC and some regional groups. I know some reform minded people are working their way through the bureaucracy, and I wish them well, but I don't have much hope given the reputation the leadership has at this point.

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Old 11-04-2011, 05:52 PM   #336
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Nothing has, is or will change.

At this point all WBCCI members need to make a choice, pay the dues knowing nothing will change or leave.

Another year has been paid, expect "NOTHING" to change if not get worse.

Hell for that matter, even paid someone's dues that left the club.

They are now with the WDCU, did it more of a joke than to support the club.
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Old 11-05-2011, 02:12 PM   #337
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The FL Unit voted to ratify the DENCO amendment today. There were no dissenting votes.

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Old 11-05-2011, 10:02 PM   #338
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That is great, Randy. If this change fails, it will likely be for failure to vote on the part of enough units. It's a shame that unit leaders can choose NOT to hold a vote (though I'm not sure they can legally ignore it).

Perhaps we should bring it forward again and force a delegate vote if it fails to receive 2/3 this time. You are assured that at least 2/3 of the units present at the meeting will cast votes then.
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Old 11-13-2011, 11:08 AM   #339
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The Florida Springs Unit voted to ratify the amendment at their Business Meeting On saturday November 12.
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Old 11-20-2011, 02:58 PM   #340
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This has been an enlightening thread to read as we consider what our FT retirement coach should be.

First of all, an Airstream is still very much a possibility. If it had been eliminated, I wouldn't be visiting this forum. However, membership in WBCCI is not necessarily something that will happen if we buy an Airstream, and the various discussions on this forum are the primary reason.

When DW and I first started talking about becoming fulltimers, one of the examples I brought up was WBCCI. Of course, at that point all that I knew was what I remembered from reading Trailer Travel Here and Abroad back in the 1960's. I hadn't realized that things had turned so bad.

Last month we were graciously invited to attend the Fall Rally in Branson. We were able to attend only for a brief period, but got to see all of the beautiful coaches and meet some wonderful people. In the brief time that we were there I couldn't tell if there were any people with "official dress" or not, but there were lots of very friendly people with smiles who were willing to talk to us about their Airstreams.

I guess the question I would ask of the leaders and members of WBCCI is this: "What is the purpose of the organization?" The purpose today may not be the same as it was 50 years ago. Once that is determined, it shouldn't be too difficult to figure out how to go about accomplishing that purpose. It may take some restructuring and redefining some duties. It may even take some reductions in elected leadership. Whatever it takes, people, figure it out. You have something that once had great value, and may yet have value. Don't throw it away.
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