Summer 1996 Collection

 June, Vol 1, No 2
 July, Vol 1, No 3
 August, Vol 1, No 4

August 1996, Vol 1, No 4

What's New @ MT WEB CENTRAL?

New pages, more sections, new colors, new info with the same "tell it like it is" attitude, all designed for a "piece-a-cake" navigation.

What else do you want? A Directory of MT Schools? You asked for it. Articles? We got 'em. Books and publications? Sure thing. More sections of our MT USER GUIDE? Of course. A larger Global Directory? Just come and check it out! Greater professional commitment? You bet. More links? Even that. Did I hear you say a referral Directory of chiropractic physicians who offer or advocate MT? Hey, a promise is a promise! And back issues of MT Matters!? Why not? Better looks? You be the judge--and let us know!

By sheer percentage, (about 80%) MT is a women's profession. The Net, unfortunately, is slow to demonstrate that fact. Alas, as if you have to be an electrician in order to turn on the lights, many women are still under the impression that they have to be a computrician in order to point, click, and surf the Net. Our very world-wide-web presence is perfect proof that MTs can do it. And we urge you to do what you can to bring at least one fellow MT to our--their--MASSAGE THERAPY WEB CENTRAL in the next week or so to see just how well we do it. Can we count on you? . . .

Any Comments?
If I send the fees and the requirements you ask for with the membership form, will my name appear on the web? I do not see any from Utah; will I be the first to join from my state?

We are not interested in sheer numbers. We want professional-quality only. If you've got it, we'll take you, and, yes, your listing--even your personal bio-page--will appear, not just anywhere on the web but on MT WEB CENTRAL!

"I experienced my first visit to an RMT. earlier this week....such sweet indulgence."

Although MT feels so good, to us it's anything but indulgence. What could be less "indulgence" than your bodymind health? :)

"I am interested in locating information on exceptional massage therapy schools in Ontario-southern Ontario

See "What's New on MT Web Central" (above), and you'll know what to do.

"I noticed your ad in MASSAGE magazine and have printed out the application form - will be sending it in. Congratulations on your web presence. Perhaps someday I'll be able to have a professional listing/posting/membership with you."

Now you're talking! We love our Supportive Members. And what better place to get reliable info about professional-quality MT than from the comfort of their computer chair on MT WEB CENTRAL?

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July 1996, Vol 1, No 3

What's New @ MT WEB CENTRAL?

Before we bring you up to date, we must share with you this sweet note from a more experienced web-designer from the Arizona desert who wrote:

"Bruria, being an avid fan of massage (one a week, every week), I'm happy to give some input. I checked out your site--love the humorous writing. High touch chutzpah? The coffee was coming out of my nostrils at that point. ;)"

Molly, I hope your coffee had a nice aroma. Otherwise, switch and visit again soon!

Another visitor had a more solid remark:"Your web site is definitely going to fill a useful niche. There's something of a dearth of organized information out there when it comes to massage resources. Best of luck with it!"

Thanks. While luck and chicken-soup cannot hurt, we'll be working very hard on actually creating our success . . . :) And we hope that your friend who's considering MT school, in Boston, Mass (a state not yet under an MT license), will be part of it!

"I think your info and goals are 'right on.'"

With feedback like that, nobody's hair is turning white anytime soon around here . . . :) Thanks.

One of our Connecticut, USA members visiting in Texas, USA, writes: "What's new with you and the professional network, Associated MTs?"

A lot! Very, very exciting, but not easy to shoulder all the effort alone . . . It's good to see new members joining, especially co-founding members from new states! As you know, although we still need to grow, our goal has always been a few quality members in each state, rather than mere big numbers. We are already in 13 states! Not bad, huh?

To devote more time to MT WEB CENTRAL, (We're already getting 75-100 pieces of daily E-mail), Bruria (Ginton) no longer takew on new clients and patients in her private practice. She might as well refer them directly to other MTs. We've gotten the first two practice listings directly from our MT Web Central, we've been written up--at last--in the book Massage- a Career at Your Fingertips (Martin Ashley) and in the Touch Therapy TimesJack Thomas' newsletter. We're also getting ready to upload more good stuff to our site! We're amazed how much of our mail is about MT education, and hope that MT schools will take advantage of the irresistible offer to be included in our site. As a Spiderwoman and Webgrrl, our founder would also like to see more women LicMTs getting connected and joining. It's a bit frustrating (and too costly) to still have to do so much business via S-mail and conventional phone. But watch us, in less than a year, the situation, no doubt, will change.

"What kind of a referral service are you?"

First of all, congratulations! VA has just recently passed an MT licensing law! As for your Q: ASSOCIATED MTs(sm) is a professional network mainly for cooperative ethical promotion, mentoring, and advocacy for present and future LicMTs. Although we publish print and virtual Directories of qualified members, we are not charging per referral, and we don't coordinate those referrals either. We trust that they will happen naturally and directly between consumers and therapists as the result of our promotion efforts. Trust us, we are much more interested in the future of the profession than in making a "rub-it-in" quick buck! To be sure, this is an exciting time for MT. But there's a lot of hype blowing around and finding its way into the conventional media too. "When the dust settles," we want to be sure that there are more opportunities for LicMTs who want to work in professional settings, that graduates of MT schools are not forced into "assembly-line" purely commercial settings, and that the consumer begins to appreciate the difference between the two. Capish?

" I mailed you my resume and application. I have taken so many courses, why can't I be an ASSOCIATED MTs Active Member? Is it my fault that California doesn't have an MT [state] license? . . ."

Hey, AMTs is eager for you to have a state license. And of course it's not your fault. We created this network when we realized that failing to connect present and future LicMTs has been the "blunder of the century." It's everybody's fault . . . Bruria's fault too . . . until 1992, the birth of AMTs, that is. We also learned that most consumers and other health professionals are not yet aware of this special and real professional status of LicMTs. And we believe that it is in our mutual interest to be connected and to support one another. With our MT Web Central in place, humming and growing, we now have every reason to believe that by the very nature of our presence, there will be a stronger momentum for the passage of licensing laws in all states. There is no reason to spend lots of money, energy, and time in an isolated effort to move your state legislature to "do the right thing." Let's face it, we now live in a global village. AMTs recognizes that fact, and we hope that all other MT organizations will watch what we are accomplishing and help support our website! If you are a member of any such "vast" MT organization, I urge you to explain to fellow members that without a state license there really is no legal status or real prospects for professional-quality prosperity for each one of you. And MT WEB CENTRAL is an ever-expanding roof with enough space under it for all MT organizations and their members. Getting involved, stating your position, and letting other MTs know will get you and the rest of us closer to the goal. In the meantime, check if you have Equivalency Qualifications. And we want you to know that we're behind you in the pursuit of this very basic professional goal!

"When we advertise in the Yellow Pages, we invite harassment!"

How do you feel about it? Is there harassment on the Net? Are you willing to sign an already drafted letter and S-mail it to corporate Yellow Page type publications?

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June 1996, Vol 1, No 2

What's New @ MT WEB CENTRAL?

There is down-sizing everywhere, but here's a reason to celebrate:

"Hi, Bruria. I've got some news for you. After ten years of trying, we got our massage therapy bill passed in Maryland! The bill passed just a couple hours before the legislative session for 1996 ended at midnight. The bill is a certification bill, but has licensure content. We are given the title 'massage therapist,' and one must be state certified to be able to use any term using massage. We expect the Governor to sign it in a few weeks."

BTW, MT WEB CENTRAL believes that with present and future Licensed MTs being--at last-- connected, there will be a good-vibes ripple effect, and state licensing--without which, mind you, no health profession has ever flourished--will take ten weeks, instead of those unfortunate ten years! . . . :) We send Maryland our best wishes.

"1) Yes, keep me on your mailing list. I'm going to join soon.

2) In our area this past year, the Yellow Pages started having two headings: MASSAGE THERAPISTS (that's us) and MASSAGES (that's the parlors). The beauty of the system is that it puts us first in alphabetical order. Tell New York to check out the Bell South Yellow Pages."

Our first reaction was: "Cool beans!" Then it occurred to us that the Yellow pages is now trying to have it both ways, and guess who we think is going to pay? It reminded us of a message on one of the commercial networks in which a fellow MT told us how she finally had the solution to the constant fear of being sexually harassed . . . prayer! Cute, but paleez! We need, we deserve to change this unacceptable business environment. And our turn, rest assured, is coming!

"Pacific Bell offers two listings (at least) in the Yellow Pages for the area south of San Francisco: MASSAGE includes a few "escort/massage" services and other funky looking places, some beauty/facial type places, but mostly lists massage practitioners and locations that specify certification, therapeutic, etc.

Separate listings are also available for MASSAGE SCHOOLS, MASSAGE THERAPEUTIC, and MASSAGE EQUIPMENT. Lots of listings under MASSAGE THERAPEUTIC. Some repeats of listings under MASSAGE. Some practitioners also choose to list under HEALTH & FITNESS PROGRAM CONSULTANTS Separate listing for ESCORT SERVICE- PERSONAL This one isn't listed as a "see also . . ." under Massage, thankfully. Thought you'd like the word from CA."

We certainly appreciate the report. See response to the NC message (above).

As for the message that started with: "Please leave me out of any further notices or em's, as I don't want to be associated with your group."

Hey, we will certainly respect your wishes. And we thank you nevertheless for bringing up an important issue . . .You said:

"I personally don't care what someone does in their private life. I find this puritanical sex fear in the legit Massage community to be "old." If someone wants something and they're willing to pay for it, I see nothing wrong with them receiving it. If the "professional massage school" where I learned to be a massage therapist had chosen to be more open-minded in their discussion of the sex issue, it would have saved me a tremendous amount of heartache and pain. We need to talk about what goes on sexually between people in and out of the professional Massage Therapy venue. I admire your efforts, but when professional groups like yours go on and on about your struggle for legitimacy, I can't help but thinking that it further reinforces the shame, guilt, fear and negative energy that people who chose to engage in sex in their work have to absorb from a society too uptight to acknowledge that what's consensual between adults is okay."

(taking a deep breath...) Indeed, because of its history of sexual abuse, the MT profession has responded with a known defense mechanism. . . denial! From schools to the leadership of prominent MT associations, the attitude has been something like: "If we stay away from the subject, perhaps it will go away." MT WEB CENTRAL doesn't believe in "silver spoons." We need to create our professional work environment. In the MT USER GUIDE, (QWL Services, NYC, 1993) Ginton explains directly--why sex is not part of professional-quality MT. It has to do with professional boundaries, not with any inherent shame around sex. There is nothing wrong with consensual sex (hopefully, safe sex!).

We happen to believe that sex should be a free exchange, not a commercial commodity. But we're more realistic than our social belief system . . . :). As health professionals, however, it is not the sex per se that we object to. It is the unfortunate disease-promoting behavior--psycho-social and physical--that the sex industry harbors which we hope to see go away. But we demand to see this vicious circle stop interfering with our profession! What MTs want as health-professionals is for the public to recognize that, regardless of who initiates it, when sexual behavior occurs between therapist and client/patient, the professional relationship has been broken.

Most of us cannot wait for the Yellow Pages-type publications to stop using the category of Massage as a cover up for illicit sex. And we hope that this will be accomplished as the result of education, healthy consumer pressure, and voluntary response from such publications--not from the censoring of free speech!

It hurts me to hear more and more MTs who say: "I've tried to advertise in the Yellow Pages, but what am I getting in return? Harassment!" MT WEB CENTRAL plans to enlist fellow MT internauts to help communicate our ideas to all Yellow Pages-type publications in the very near future. Please stay tuned . . .

When you write with Qs or feedback, remember, we don't need hype. To help one another, we simply need straight info! Don't, however, hesitate to tell us how you feel about the issues! Try to be brief and, in your message, include the part of the message that you're responding to--don't assume that we remember everything--we probably don't . . . :). Thanks.

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