Thanks all for the very civil discussion in the FAQ section of the blog — all of the concerns were addressed before I got to respond! Just to pull the conversation to the front, someone posted frustrations about too many lost dog posters, some weathered and in poor condition, and a couple of Mari’s Army wrote back about our postering guidelines, and both sides listened to each other, which was awesome. It’s easy for conversations between strangers to spiral out of control, and I appreciate that both sides engaged and had a real conversation.
In terms of where we are: Andrew and I definitely don’t want to over poster. Over exposure works against the MarisolSearch because it just upsets people (same with postering trees). At the same time, one of the best methods of outreach is putting up posters, in large part because people know where to go if they see Mari and want to call, so it’s all about striking a balance.
There is a postering team with specific Fells gate and street assignments, so we ask people not to poster random streets — we’ve been trying to be strategic in outreach with few well-placed posters in high impact areas — basically the Fells and the surrounding streets that Mari’s cutting through to scavenge. Instead, if there are nearby hospitals, grocery and pet stores, bike repair shops, etc. with community boards or fliers in their windows, and you’re willing to walk in and ask if they’d post a Mari flier, that would be awesome. We’re regularly covering post offices and libraries, but there are also a lot of coffee shops and independent stores out there who are usually willing to have a poster (we’ve found that national chains usually have blanket anti-postering policies, although some will put a sign in employee break rooms). Before New Years we tried to get posters into local liquor stores to reach people waiting in line. Given that it’s spring, gardening/outdoor stores might be a good area for outreach.
Along with that, talking to people really does make the biggest difference. I want to thank everyone who came out to picket and help hand out mini-fliers on Thursday. It was the first time any of us met, and we reached a lot of people! So many Fells visitors had seen the signs, but hearing someone say, “There were 3 sightings this past week” made a huge difference. A few people pulled over into the Fells lot to talk to us — it was a great afternoon’s effort. Many thanks to Bella for being the point person and to Donna, Mary, Gail, Meredith, and Bella for their time! We talked about picketing again (probably in another spot) and handing out mini-fliers at the Fells again, so stay tuned.
That’s everything for now. Thanks again for all of your help! Last week was the first time since December that we had so many sightings, so we’re keeping our fingers crossed that as the weather improves and more people are out and about, we’ll be able to track down our clever little sol.