After I blogged about Change.org dropping Michelle Rhee and Jonah Edelman, I got an email from a representative of Change.org asking me to explain its policy on my blog. I told him my concern was not with its policy, but with the deception involved in signing people up as members of an organization they did not wish to join. On our third exchange of emails, he informed me that I was a member of Students First. He said his records showed that I had signed one of its petitions a year ago. He gave me a website where I could view my member profile, but I was unwilling to click on the link for fear that doing so would reconfirm my “membership.” Maybe the second click would put me in a category of “active” membership.
This is horrifying. I never knowingly signed to join Michelle Rhee’s Students First.
When Rhee boasts of her huge membership, she is counting people like me who were snared without their knowledge. She is using my name to inflate her numbers.
This is deceptive practice. It is fraudulent. There ought to be a way to bring a complaint to the Federal Trade Commission or some other watchdog agency to protest the deceptive capture and misuse of my name and that of many others.
I choose the organizations I join with care and forethought. I didn’t choose to belong to Students First.
Michelle Rhee, take my name off your membership list!
How can I do it without clicking the website of the organization that entrapped me? Is there a place to click that says “remove my name?”
On a happier note, a reader informed me that a Chicago teacher named Jen Johnson started the ball rolling with a campaign called “Change.org: Stop Supporting Union-Busters” Petition.“
We must celebrate every small victory. We must remember that lone individuals can make a difference.
Change begins with one person.
Sometimes change begins with one writer, like Thomas Paine, or one speaker, like Martin Luther King Jr.
Change begins with one and then multiplies. Many people signed the petition, others wrote. I mentioned Aaron Krager in the earlier post. Another post may have played a part in changing Change.org.