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View Full Version : New Group/Email List for the Pool Party


DeanT
05-17-2009, 03:15 PM
Sunday, May 17, 2009

New Forum/Email Pool Party Yahoo Group (http://blog.horseplayersassociation.org/2009/05/new-forumemail-pool-party-group.html)

Hey Folks,

As you know we have been working away at the Pool Party each week here at HANA, and elsewhere. The blog and website tends to get cluttered with all of the irons we have here in the fire, and Ross Gallo came up with a great idea to expand the Parties - with a email list and yahoo group. The text if his email he sent to all of us as HANA members (and non-members too!) is as follows.

Please consider sending an email and joining the group to here. handletalks-subscribe@yahoogroups.com . We have to change the game one bettor at a time. One track at a time. Your voice matters.

Hello All,

Hope this finds you well. (I'll explain the link above soon, I promise) Many of you know about and have been participating in an idea created by Mike Mayo and being overseen by HANA (Horseplayer's Association of North America). For those that don't, in it's simplest form, we are attempting to band together horseplayers everywhere to wager their dollars on a specific pool or race every week. We have made five attempts in the last seven weeks (skipped the Derby and Preakness weeks and will skip Belmont week as well), and have increased handle between $12,000 and $50,000 (estimated) on each wager over that time. We have played at Will Rogers Downs, Tampa Bay Downs, Mountaineer Park, Hawthorne and Prairie Meadows. We have been staying away from the major tracks for several reasons, but mostly to make it easier to track our progress in these tracks "smaller" pools. Our next play will be at Canterbury Park on Saturday May 23rd, race TBD.

HANA has been doing a wonderful job with this venture and will continue to be the lead. They have other interests and responsibilities (all about improving the game for the horseplayer), so we have decided to create a forum dedicated to the Pool Party only that will work in concert with HANA, and hopefully give you the players a bigger voice in this venture and more information than ever before. After all, it is your money that's on the line. We will be: addressing our ultimate goals, attempting to get an estimated roll call of our numbers, posting our handle figures every week, looking for your feedback and questions on all subjects, handicapping the races from week to week, as well as asking you to vote from time to time on various subjects and possibly/probably including the selection process itself, and much more. We've made some good decisions and some bad ones so far, but I know we've learned each time from the bad ones. We need you to succeed and hopefully this new forum will be another positive step to that end. For those of you who haven't already, I urge you to join HANA, it's free and when you read their mission statement you'll know you're among kindred spirits. And please send an email (blank or otherwise) to the link (also listed above) handletalks-subscribe@yahoogroups.com and you'll soon be a part of our new dedicated forum. Look forward to the coming weeks and months and working with all of you to the betterment of our game. Thank you.

Ross Gallo

Indulto
05-18-2009, 03:59 AM
Dean,
I want to congratulate HANA for living up to its promise not to sell or otherwise release its e-mai list.

I would appreciate a more in-depth explanation as to the advantages, if any, to informing Mr. Gallo and his associates that one is a member of HANA if he can already reach them through HANA. Is this a vehicle for identifying horseplayers known to be concerned about the state of horseracing and/or marketing non-HANA products and services to them?

I respectfully submit that HANA should try to earn income by charging for mailings to its members who have opted-in to receive them. A list of over a thousand HANA member e-mail addresses should be quite valuable.

As many who have made purchases on-line and provided a ship-to address are already aware, it is now possible to match up e-mail addresses with real names and addresses.
Were I to find a worthwhile reason to join a group similarly affiliated with HANA, I would use a secondary e-mail address to deterrmine when and if it is being sold or passed on to a third party.

I'm sure HANA is aware that supplying its list to any vendor who can match them up with real names and addresses -- even for its own internal use -- would compromise the privacy of its members who joined under the originally published mission statement.

chickenhead
05-18-2009, 04:24 AM
There is a big difference between sending an email to your members to alert them of something someone else is doing that they may find of merit -- and in giving or selling someone else your membership list.

Selling or giving away any membership details (or selling even hidden access for advertisers to spam them) is about the worst idea I've heard suggested yet -- and that's saying something.

Indulto
05-18-2009, 05:13 AM
... Selling or giving away any membership details (or selling even hidden access for advertisers to spam them) is about the worst idea I've heard suggested yet -- and that's saying something.If you're suggesting that I disagree with the above, please re-read my post which contained the following:... I respectfully submit that HANA should try to earn income by charging for mailings to its members who have opted-in to receive them. ...My point being that HANA could communicate offers only to its members who specifically indicated they wanted to receive such e-mails for the purpose of providing HANA with revenue. It would certainly seem reasonable to be selective about such opportunities and restrict them to racing-related mailings. Anyone wanting to protect themselves further when responding could still do so.

Frankly, I expected HANA to use e-mailings to prompt feedback DIRECTLY from its membership for approval and direction. There are many issues besides the "procott" that warrant such communication.

I don't mind your disagreeing with me, Chick, but I know you're capable of debating an issue on its merits without distorting them. Perhaps you thought my post contained sarcasm. I assure you none was intended. This mailing was handled properly. It just seemed to me that if anyone should benefit financially from even a partial list of HANA members, it should be HANA and thus its membership as a whole.

Cangamble
05-18-2009, 09:40 AM
Charging members? At this point of time it will be an easy way to reduce Hana's membership from over 1100 to 3.

chickenhead
05-18-2009, 11:41 AM
I don't mind your disagreeing with me, Chick, but I know you're capable of debating an issue on its merits without distorting them. Perhaps you thought my post contained sarcasm. I assure you none was intended. This mailing was handled properly. It just seemed to me that if anyone should benefit financially from even a partial list of HANA members, it should be HANA and thus its membership as a whole.

I really wasn't trying to distort what you said, that is what I thought you said. Everyone opts in to being a HANA member, and most opt to continue to receive emails from HANA by not opting out. Some of course do already opt out of receiving any emails. I had no idea you were talking about something else, or some other list.

I think the adoption rate for a voluntary spam-only list would be fairly low, as well as full of throw away email addresses that aren't actually read.

I remain optimistic that HANA can remain funded by horse players directly and voluntarily.

DeanT
05-18-2009, 12:25 PM
Indy,

This is simply a new way to get people involved in the specific Pool Party. Previously we did everything on the blog and with our list for the Pool Party - blogging, emails, everything. Ross wants to get involved to get more people interested by creating a yahoo group. It is simply another prong in the fire of hopefully growing it.

As for our list, we have kept the same policy that we had from the beginning - we don't spam, we don't give it out to anyone, and we do not tell anyone you are a member without your permission. We try to only use it for worthwhile purposes for now, like the pool parties, a newsletter, and perhaps this week to push people to sign the NTRA withholding tax petition, that is important to all horseplayers, big and small.

Indulto
05-18-2009, 12:55 PM
Charging members? At this point of time it will be an easy way to reduce Hana's membership from over 1100 to 3.:lol:
I'm sure that a blogger like yourself knows it is the source of the e-mail content (vendors) who would be charged, not the recipients (members).

Indulto
05-18-2009, 01:18 PM
I really wasn't trying to distort what you said, that is what I thought you said. Everyone opts in to being a HANA member, and most opt to continue to receive emails from HANA by not opting out. Some of course do already opt out of receiving any emails. I had no idea you were talking about something else, or some other list.

I think the adoption rate for a voluntary spam-only list would be fairly low, as well as full of throw away email addresses that aren't actually read.

I remain optimistic that HANA can remain funded by horse players directly and voluntarily.As I said previously, frequent communication with members through e-mail to get feedback, e.g., to enable voting on an issue to determine support in advance for a future action, would seem to be desirable.

It would certainly be one way to test your conjecture that I bolded above, and allow those who wished to participate to opt-in to such a program. Has direct, voluntary funding proven adequate so far?

Indulto
05-18-2009, 01:53 PM
Indy,

This is simply a new way to get people involved in the specific Pool Party. Previously we did everything on the blog and with our list for the Pool Party - blogging, emails, everything. Ross wants to get involved to get more people interested by creating a yahoo group. It is simply another prong in the fire of hopefully growing it.

As for our list, we have kept the same policy that we had from the beginning - we don't spam, we don't give it out to anyone, and we do not tell anyone you are a member without your permission. We try to only use it for worthwhile purposes for now, like the pool parties, a newsletter, and perhaps this week to push people to sign the NTRA withholding tax petition, that is important to all horseplayers, big and small.Dean,
As I tried to say, HANA's handling of its e-mail list has been entirely appropriate; including this recent invitation to join another list. I suppose I'm too unlikely a messenger for positive encouragement toward its continuation. ;)

Even privacy advocates should endorse constructive and protected use of the list, but again, that seems like something for the membership to decide for itself without imposing on those who would not opt-in.

My question for Mr. Gallo as well as yourself is why and how frequently do people want to participate in "pool parties" without being a member of HANA? Also, is he contemplating actions HANA might not support at this time, e.g., boycotts rather than procotts?

DeanT
05-18-2009, 02:20 PM
Hey Indy,

I don't know if there will be a change in policy on the pool parties. Right now there is a plan for one year to keep working it as is. We hope that we achieve some mass over that 365 day period. I guess the easy (some might say cop out, but I assure you it is not) answer is: we'll see how things go.

Right now we get on a call, chat about the race, what direction to go in and so on. It is a learning experience and we are trying myriad ways to get it to grow, many of which are in the works each week.

As for your other questions, this is a good way (a yahoo group) to get feedback from members and nonmembers on the races and direction, so that is a good thing. We are trying more and more ways to get members involved as we grow. Many of their suggestions are very good, as you know and need to be looked at, so we are trying a few things to grow this. We are currently in construction of an "Ask HANA" page where members can submit questions and topics for discussion, and this page will act solely for this purpose (we currently get piles of questions and comments via email and on the sign up page and my fingers are getting numb). Over time this page will hopefully be a spot for polls and otherwise. Like I said, just learning here. Groups like the NTRA have full paid staff for these sorts of things and clearly we do not. We try our best on a shoestring right now. We're happy with the way things are going but certainly wish there were more hours in the day.

Cheers,

D

chickenhead
05-18-2009, 02:37 PM
As I said previously, frequent communication with members through e-mail to get feedback, e.g., to enable voting on an issue to determine support in advance for a future action, would seem to be desirable.

It would certainly be one way to test your conjecture that I bolded above, and allow those who wished to participate to opt-in to such a program.

I'll just be honest that I'm not sure what you're talking about. The actual Membership list, some other list -- I do not know what you are thinking, so I'll just refrain from commenting on it directly. I'm sure it's clear to you, but it is not to me.

I don't see what the above comment has to do with selling the list, or a list, or any list, to an advertiser so they can sell something to HANA members as a way to raise money.

Has direct, voluntary funding proven adequate so far?

I suppose like the answer to most complex questions, the answer is "it depends".

SuffolkDowns Fan
05-18-2009, 04:58 PM
Just curious what the Yahoo group has that PaceAdvantage doesn't? Is it just to link with more people?

Indulto
05-18-2009, 05:40 PM
As I said previously, frequent communication with members through e-mail to get feedback, e.g., to enable voting on an issue to determine support in advance for a future action, would seem to be desirable.

It would certainly be one way to test your conjecture that I bolded above, and allow those who wished to participate to opt-in to such a program.
I'll just be honest that I'm not sure what you're talking about. The actual Membership list, some other list -- I do not know what you are thinking, so I'll just refrain from commenting on it directly. I'm sure it's clear to you, but it is not to me.

I don't see what the above comment has to do with selling the list, or a list, or any list, to an advertiser so they can sell something to HANA members as a way to raise money.
Has direct, voluntary funding proven adequate so far?I suppose like the answer to most complex questions, the answer is "it depends".I assume HANA maintains a single list of its members with everyone's e-mail address and salutation from which you generate the blog entry mailings. You may be extracting, combining, and/or massaging those records from and to other files/lists for specific internal purposes, but basically there must exist a set of all members -- or a virtual superset of whatever component sets you may be maintaining -- that is used to communicate with members.

By definition, everyone who has joined HANA has "opted-in" to this list with the expectation of receiving communications directly from HANA regarding HANA's activities, plans, accounting, etc.

Perhaps you are maintaining separate member list(s) that do not receive such mailings, e.g., members after a certain point are maintained separately on the blog and the website. I have no idea.

What I do know is that it should be possible for you to do a mailing to the entire membership asking them to vote on one or more important issues including whether or not they wish to receive mailings from HANA paid for by sources who wish to address its membership collectively for either individual or collective responses.

For example, suppose a racetrack wanted to purchase a poll of HANA members to find out what percent of HANA members play that track and on what days thay bet. Wouldn't that be a legitimate use of the data base for both HANA members and that racetrack; especially if it were to fund other projects of value to the membership like the track ratings? Isn't this a way to extend HANA's unified voice?

chickenhead
05-18-2009, 06:46 PM
For example, suppose a racetrack wanted to purchase a poll of HANA members to find out what percent of HANA members play that track and on what days thay bet. Wouldn't that be a legitimate use of the data base for both HANA members and that racetrack; especially if it were to fund other projects of value to the membership like the track ratings? Isn't this a way to extend HANA's unified voice?

Sure. I'm guessing HANA would seriously consider any request from a track like that -- monetary considerations completely aside. I actually wouldn't be surprised at all if HANA had mentioned or solicited and offered that sort of feedback to tracks, completely free, if they wanted it.

It seems to me it's probably more like the opposite -- tracks would require us to pay them so we could tell them what we think, unfortunately.

Indulto
05-18-2009, 07:28 PM
Sure. I'm guessing HANA would seriously consider any request from a track like that -- monetary considerations completely aside. I actually wouldn't be surprised at all if HANA had mentioned or solicited and offered that sort of feedback to tracks, completely free, if they wanted it.

It seems to me it's probably more like the opposite -- tracks would require us to pay them so we could tell them what we think, unfortunately.:D
HOL and DMR could probably use a poll right now re: the effects on handle of small fields, synthetics and takeout right about now. Anybody heard anything about making rebates legal from the CHRB now that the 45-day waiting period has elapsed and they can vote on that issue?