NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Opinion

November 14, 2013

Positive campaign, negative feedback

To the editor:

Re: Characterization of the “I Am Pro Amesbury” Facebook page as a “disingenuous, smear campaign.”

The I Am Pro Amesbury (IAPA) Facebook page was created a few short weeks ago by a small group of citizens, many of whom had just met each other, in response to what was seen as a highly negative view of the city being portrayed by some of the candidates for office in Amesbury. Amesbury was being characterized as a town that no one would want to move to or live in, with high taxes, poor schools, etc.

We disagreed with this description, and wanted to create a space for people who shared our positive outlook on the direction of the city.

We did not disparage those who had a different viewpoint; we did not name the page “I Am Pro Amesbury and You are Not.” We clearly put in the IAPA introductory statement that the page is a space for people who believe that Amesbury is moving in the right direction, which was a sentiment that not everyone would agree with. Because we wanted to be able to endorse candidates who supported our position, IAPA registered as a PAC in order to operate within the law. There is not a single attack on anyone on the IAPA page and we take down posts of all kinds that do so. This may be the first time that we have heard of a group being accused of creating a “smear campaign” because they went positive.

Clearly, the name “I Am Pro Amesbury” touched a nerve in some of our neighbors in a way that we did not expect or intend. Perhaps if a different name had been selected, such as “Amesbury Moving Forward,” the response from some may have been different. Or perhaps not. However, we picked a name that correctly and concisely described the sentiment of the page creators, and apparently of the 500-plus people who have liked the page on Facebook. We fully intend to keep the page active as a place for positive discourse and information about our community.

Rob Chamberlain, Frank Czar, Kim Czar, Matt Einson, Mike Hogg, Gretchen Marinopoulos, Amy Sherwood, Jonathan Sherwood

Amesbury

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints

NDN Video
'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Chapter Two: Designing for Naomi Watts Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show' Robin Wright Can Dance! (WATCH) She's Back! See Paris Hilton's New Carl's Jr. Ad Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years
Special Features
NRA Waterfront Plans