The Nudist Blogosphere

On a public forum, Debbie Jungwirth, the Network Coordinator for The Naturist Society, had this to say about me: "I find the lack of naturist credentials and/or background information about the administrator of this blog a little disturbing."

Now "disturbing" is a word freely thrown around by the talking heads of the 24 hour news cycle in order to catch people's attention, and I want to assume that Debbie didn't mean that I'm causing her stress, worry or anxiety. Perhaps what she meant is that by remaining anonymous, my words here carry little or no credibility as far as she's concerned.

Either way, this is problematic. To so offhandedly dismiss the words of someone who has been blogging since 2005 in support of The Naturist Society and naturist principles shows a certain lack of understanding of the power of the blogosphere, and the sincerity of my efforts.

What are "naturist credentials"? In order to be taken seriously by the naturist elite, what sort of background does one need? I am a member of TNS, a donor to the NAC, I also belong to AANR, was a member of a local naturist club, and attend naturist resorts with my wife, all of which have been written about here over the past few years.

Remaining publicly anonymous is a personal choice by me on this blog, but I have published several nude photos of myself, another one appears at the top of this article. I can tell you that a couple of NAC board members know my identity, as do several other bloggers, and naturally the people I encounter at social events.

In her dismissal of me, Debbie Jungwirth also dismisses all other anonymous nudist and naturist bloggers. This is tragic, because it's the nudist bloggers who are writing the most erudite, timely, interesting and important articles on naturism today. Take for example The Academic Naturist, whose "Future Resort" series is unsurpassed for research and content. It should be must reading for all naturists.

The Emerging Nudist is the new kid on the block, but so far has put out some of the most impressive content I've read. His "Shock and Awe" series is ongoing and encourages activism as the means to achieve more successes in the naturist movement, specifically recommending following NAC alerts and actions.

I also like to think that this blog is an important link in the Internet chain of naturist and nudists.

The Naturist Society and the NAC do great work, and N Magazine is a first-class publication, but the organizations are behind the times when it comes to getting the word out on the Internet. The NAC blog is updated only when an alert is issued, and often too late. When I made a donation to the NAC, I never received an acknowledgement, or a promised newsletter subscription. TNS does not maintain any email newsletter or mailing list for members to keep them informed about upcoming events. The TNS MySpace blog was last updated on November 28, 2008, when Lee Baxandall passed away. Their Facebook page is better, but with only 319 members as of today, it's ineffective as a means to attract new people.

So, for what it's worth, I encourage The Naturist Society and the Naturist Action Committee to embrace, not dismiss, the blogosphere. We are your best friends, we work for free, and we are at it every day. Our only reward is from the thousands of people who read our posts and appreciate what we write. My blog has over 1700 pages, more content than the web sites for NAC, TNS and AANR combined.

Just yesterday I received the following email from a reader:
Seeing your personal nude photos over the years is amazing. We are close to the same age and like you, I often wonder where that boyish body I once had went! I remember as a teenager, all 150 pounds of me, going out into my backyard at night and removing my clothes just so I could feel free. I have had a naturist's heart ever since, and I can now be nude 24/7 at my home and in my yard, jacuzzi, and pool. I love it. Thanks for having such a wonderful blog! You are a very courageous man!
To say the least, this made my day, and gave me enough fuel for several weeks of blogging. To call bloggers disturbing, irrelevant or worse is not only myopic, it's unwise.