Tradition 11 - AA Public Service Announcements

The 12 Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous, the principles that hold our groups and society together.
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Thumper
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Tradition 11 - AA Public Service Announcements

Post by Thumper »

Tradition Eleven

“Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio and films.”

Question up for discussion. Have any of you seen or heard the Public Service Announcements (PSAs) that AA puts out on radio and TV? Do you think this violates Tradition Eleven?
http://www.aa.org/pages/en_US/videos-and-audios

BTW: I asked them (AA). I will post their response after the discussion proceeds a bit.

DWB

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PaigeB
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Re: Tradition 11 - AA Public Service Announcements

Post by PaigeB »

I have heard them from when I did Public Information for our District. I have never been lucky enough to hear them played on the radio or TV. I know that they are real alcoholics who do the speaking/acting. I know they havea long vetting time in AAWS/Conference approval.

I would say they are specifically made to conform to the Traditions.
Cling to the thought that, in God's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have - the key to life and happiness for others. With it you can avert death and misery for them. page 124 BB

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avaneesh912
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Re: Tradition 11 - AA Public Service Announcements

Post by avaneesh912 »

Question up for discussion. Have any of you seen or heard the Public Service Announcements (PSAs) that AA puts out on radio and TV? Do you think this violates Tradition Eleven?
I have seen few about inmates getting the message in jails. The names are hid and they show their backs or faces obscured. I dont think they are violating the traditions.
Show him the mental twist which leads to the first drink of a spree. We suggest you do this as we have done it in the chapter on alcoholism.(Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)

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Blue Moon
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Re: Tradition 11 - AA Public Service Announcements

Post by Blue Moon »

Thumper wrote:Tradition Eleven

“Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio and films.”

Question up for discussion. Have any of you seen or heard the Public Service Announcements (PSAs) that AA puts out on radio and TV? Do you think this violates Tradition Eleven?
http://www.aa.org/pages/en_US/videos-and-audios

BTW: I asked them (AA). I will post their response after the discussion proceeds a bit.

DWB
If in doubt about a Tradition, look to the long-form: "Our relations with the general public should be characterized by personal anonymity. We think A.A. ought to avoid sensational advertising. Our names and pictures as A.A. members ought not be broadcast, filmed, or publicly printed. Our public relations should be guided by the principle of attraction rather than promotion. There is never need to praise ourselves. We feel it better to let our friends recommend us."

Key words in the Tradition: "personal" and "sensational". Much of the long-form is talking about personal promotion, and makes no mention of not advertising at all.

AA itself was never supposed to be a secret society, with membership by word-of-mouth only. We're not the Freemasons. Our doors are open to all who have a problem with alcohol, but they do sort-of need to know where the doors are.

So we maintain personal anonymity, thinking it's better to have our friends recommend us than be personally shouting egotistically from the rooftops about how wonderful we think we are. But we produce PSAs to let others know what AA is and where to find us. We could perhaps do better to inform people (e.g. the courts) about what AA isn't.

Unrelated to Tradition 11, but .... you're welcome to opine on how PSAs etc. have enabled AAs to become lazy and complacent rather than remain diligent with 12th-Step activity.
Ian S
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Re: Tradition 11 - AA Public Service Announcements

Post by PastDelegate57/65 »

PSAs are not a violation of Tradition 11. Having participated on the approval of one of them in 2007, I can assure you that they are well within the bounds of Tradition 11. They are not SENSATIONAL PROMOTION. No one breaks their Anonymity. They are designed to let people know how to reach AA if they need it.

While AA Members are Anonymous at the Public Level, AA is not INVISIBLE. We do however avoid Sensational Advertising or Promotion.....which does not include letting people know how to find us.

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