WHAT IS A MANY TO MANY?
The abbreviation for a many-to-many is M2M. From now on we will use this abbreviation so do please note that it does NOT refer to MAN to MAN !! (All feminists relax)
A M2M is a cheap way of facilitating group discussion over a large geographical area. Although in the long run CWN would love to launch a regular periodical (and we aim eventually to do so) we recognise that such a venture would be risky and unwise at this stage. The recipe for a M2M is much easier.
A M2M usually has 20 - 50 members, although there are no restrictions in our M2M. One or two people are the organising editors. By a given deadline, members write articles, letters, comments, book reviews etc. and send them to the editor. He/she adds her/his own letter and a cover page listing the members and setting the next deadline, photocopies the letters and sends a set to each member.
This is when the fun begins. By the next deadline members write letters of response to previous articles, further articles, book reviews etc. thus setting up a dynamic dialogue. In this way the M2M becomes an ongoing, participatory conversation by mail, operating at an academic as well as a popular level.
Who pays for the M2M?
An important question! Different M2M's finance themselves in different ways. Our M2M, while it welcomes donations, works in the following way. Each person sends the editor a deposit of R1O.00 per copy, to be used for postage and copying costs. We aim initially to produce 4 copies of our M2M per year. The editor keeps track of the money and alerts participants when they need to send more.
At this stage we are not quite sure what each copy of our M2M will cost and so we have settled at R10.00. If it becomes obvious that it is costing less to produce, we will reduce the cost and any profit will go in to our CWN fund. Our idea is not to make a profit.
Apart from keeping your account clear, it is required of each member that they do get involved in the dialogue. A member must contribute at least ONE article or book review or comment per year. This can take the form of a poem, a photograph, or even a line or two of comment. Preferably contributions should be typed but if the handwriting is neat they will be accepted. Contributions can be in English, Afrikaans, Zulu or Xhosa. Since English will probably be the common denominator, if contributions in other languages could include a summary in English that will be helpful.
What you need to do:
1. Catch the vision Imagine the potential of a network of Christians across SA or even further afield dialoging with each other as we all seek to serve the LORD CHRIST in different areas of life.
2. Get your contribution and money to the editor a.s.a.p.
3. Spread the word to interested people who would enjoy and benefit from such a network and perhaps sponsor the cost of sending them an introductory issue of our M2M.
4. Pray that His kingdom might come in all areas of life in S.A.
M2M Issue 1, June 1992 p.1
Detail of cover drawing by Zak Benjamin