Firstly, ScoutNet UK is not an official site of the Head Quarters of the Scout Association. It is run on a voluntary basis by a group of ordinary practising Scout Leaders from different parts of the UK.
We like to think of ScoutNet UK as a Scout Headquarters on the Internet. We want to bring all the values of the Scout Association to part of the World Wide Web. We know that Scouts will want to explore the internet just as they want to explore the countryside. We try to give Scouts a chance to do this in an environment that embodies the values of the Scout Association. If you wouldn't expect to find something on a noticeboard in your H.Q. then you won't find it on ScoutNet UK.
With the unexpected departure of one our founding member we felt that a change of organization was required. To represent this change we have decide to go for a new name and a new style. The new name will be ScoutAbout, a name used in many districts and counties for either the newsletter or an annual showcase event. In both these forms ScoutAbout is a way of getting the message of Scouting out and so we felt that this was a good name for a web-site all about doing Scouting , talking Scouting, helping Scouting, and all about Scouting!
ScoutNet UK is quite different from ScoutBase which is the headquarters site of the Scout Association and as such represents the official policies of the Scout Association. ScoutNet UK is more like an actual Scout Group with Scouts and Scouters doing Scouting. If you want official facts and figures and information from the original source then we recommend you go to ScoutBase. If you want examples of what Scouts and Scouters are doing and you want to hear it in their own words then look around ScoutNet UK. At ScoutNet UK we are commited to working with ScoutBase while keeping our separate styles and ways of working.
Baloo is part of ScoutNet UK but is run as a self contained site. Baloo provides an index of Scouting resources on the internet. This index is not fully automatic, someone checks each entry before it goes in. This means updates to entries can be slow but it does mean you will only find Scouting sites and no nasty suprises.
All the other UK based Scouting web-sites, we know of, represent individuals, Groups, Districts or Counties. At the moment ScoutBase, ScoutNet UK and Baloo are the only Scouting websites we know of that have no geographic base. In the future we expect other Scout Leaders around the country will get together to start up web-sites that are complementary to the existing ones. When they do we will be there to help them get going.
For an initial period you will be able to reach our site through either the ScoutNet UK or the ScoutAbout address. Eventually we plan to start another site under the ScoutNet UK banner. We are still making plans but the new ScoutNet UK may have a more international flavour than the UK focused ScoutAbout.
Everyone who works with ScoutNet UK is a member of the Scout Association and active as a leader or a fellowship or a Scout Network member and so answerable to a District Commissioner somewhere in the country. We work together as a co-operative or a collective, we find this form allows us to react quickly in the rapidly evolving internet environment. You could think of us as a Scout Fellowship and in fact we hope to form ourselves into a Fellowship as soon as we get a response from the National Fellowship Team. We work either as contributors or co-ordinators or both. A contributor supplies content for the site while a co-ordinator will manage a particular section, possibly with a team of contributors. If anyone wants to contribute something to the site then they should contact us and we will allocate a co-ordinator to them. We have an overall co-ordinator and they can be contacted as firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can find out more about the people behind ScoutNet UK on our Who's Who page!