The Art of Cross Posting

Clifford rescued from Clayton County, GA

Clifford rescued from Clayton County, GA

This has been one of the hardest articles to write ever!  Maybe it’s because I can’t clearly explain, but this is my third time at attempting to write about Cross posting.

Wikipedia defines cross posting as:  Cross posting is the act of posting the same message to multiple information channels; forums, mailing lists, or newsgroups. This is distinct from multiposting, which is the posting of separate identical messages, individually, to each channel, (a forum, a newsgroup, an email list, or topic area). Enforcement actions against crossposting individuals vary from simple admonishments up to total lifetime bans. In some cases, on email lists and forums, an individual is put under a Stealth Ban where their posts are distributed back to them as if they were being distributed normally, but the rest of the subscribers are not sent the messages. This is easily detected if the Stealthed individual has two different, and totally non-associated identities in the channel, such that the non-stealthed identity will see a different set of messages, lacking the posts of the stealthed individual, in their view of the channel. 

cross postingCrossposting to groups that are irrelevant to the message posted could be considered spamming. Moreover, excessive crossposting is generally considered bad form because it multiplies traffic without adding any new content. In the extreme case, if all messages were crossposted to every email list or forum, then every email list or group would look exactly the same. A crossposter can minimize this problem by specifying that all responses be directed to a single group.

In the world of rescue, however, cross posting can be a useful tool that can save the life of a dog, when executed properly.

The most effective cross posters are those who specialize.  They email, share and/or tag dogs in shelters to rescuers who specialize in rescuing that specific breed.

rescued from Chilton County AL

Trixie Belle rescued from Chilton County AL

Two of the most successful cross posters that I know are Becky Harshman and Dale Parent, simply because they know their rescuers!  Together, these two women have saved thousands of dogs, yet they do not run a shelter, nor do they work for a specific rescue.

How do they do it?

They don’t just send a photo, they send information, and when a rescue says yes, they pull the dog, find a foster, coordinate transport, and make sure the dog gets to its destination!  This is no easy task and I don’t know how they do it, but they are my heroes.

Last week, I opened my email to find 92 emails from one cross poster.  The emails contained multiple photos of dogs of various breeds, none of them were within the herding category, and they were from shelters throughout the United States.  We can not save them all!  If a cross poster continues to bombard me with random emails, even after I have politely asked them to forward only emails that pertain to dogs I can personally save (the herding breed), I am forced to send their emails into a spam folder.

Cross posting is quite simple.  You get an email, and forward it, or you tag/share a rescuer on a photo posted on Facebook.

Shep, rescued by Holli Miller

Shep, rescued by Holli Miller

Almost all of the dogs I have rescued are because of a cross post.  Jen Wilson found Anderson Cooper, Holli Miller sent me a photo of Bart, McDreamy, McSteamy, Shep, and many others and she personally transported Shep to my door!  That’s much more than cross posting!

Someone shared Winter’s photo with me on Facebook.  Cross posting does work, but when it is done with care.

If a cross poster chooses specialize in a specific cause, they will be much more effective.

Do you want to focus on saving puppies

Do you want to focus on saving senior dogs

Do you want to focus on saving deaf/blind dogs

Are you passionate about a certain breed

or do you want to support a specific city, state or shelter

Marjie Wolfe, for example focuses her attention on the shelters in her community, Brevard County.  While her favorite breed is the Border Collie, she has saved dozens of dogs from her local shelter.

Cross posting is like trying to catch butterflies with a hole in your net  

Marjie with Timmy and Sherman

Marjie with Timmy and Sherman

Cross posting is really a hit and miss effort.  If your goal is to save dogs from being put down, the first thing you have to realize is that we can’t save them all.  Take a deep breath, and choose a specialty.  Focus on your cause, and be a liaison between the shelter and the rescue.  Take the act of rescue from beginning to end, until that dog is rescued.  Find out what paperwork the shelter needs, and help your rescue facilitate the save.

There is so much more that’s needed than just cross posting.  We need movers and shakers!  We need do-ers.  I am not suggesting that cross posters should stop, I’m suggesting that the need is so great, and so complicated that we need more – we need help.

19794852 - Safe!

19794852 – Safe!

Once I get a dog into my home, the vetting, rehabilitating, training and adopting part is easy peasy!  The hard part is getting him out, and getting him here.  The hard part is finding a foster, a foster or a boarding facility that will take care of a dog that’s been pulled from a shelter that is hundreds of miles away from the awaiting rescue.  The hardest part is coordinating a transport for the dog that is hundreds of miles away from the awaiting rescue.  That’s what is happening right now with a dog that I fell in love with because of one cross post.

He was in a shelter I had never heard of, and because of total strangers who moved heaven and earth, he has been pulled, seen a vet, and is waiting in a boarding facility for transport to me.   I can’t tell you how good it feels to know that complete strangers will take the ball and run with it for one dog.  It’s not easy, it’s a lot of work, but it’s what needs to be done in order to effectively rescue.

Huckleberry, rescued by Vicki from Clayton County, GA

Huckleberry, rescued by Vicki Truelove from Clayton County, GA

Remember, Rhys, Huckleberry, and Jake?  They were all once just a photograph on a computer screen, begging to be rescued.  It took an army of rescuers to pull it off, but they are alive, adopted, loved and worth the effort.

I want to thank everyone who has helped rescue dogs from kill shelters.  You are appreciated!

I look forward to reading your comments here!

 

Email us for more information: TheDogLiberator@gmail.com







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