New Curatores and the Future

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New Curatores and the Future

Postby Quintus Servilius Priscus on Sun Jan 06, 2008 2:31 am

I would like to thank all of the Society members who voted for us. We will not let you down! I will be getting together with my colleagues to discuss what idea's and changes we will push forward with. I would very much like to have the past Curatores remain as long as they wish to act as a advisory board.

One thing I will do now. In accordance with the Rogatio Servilia de Legati, if he will accept I am appointing Aldus Marius our FIRST Legatus(for Oklahoma and Texas).
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Re: New Curatores and the Future

Postby Valerius Claudius Iohanes on Tue Jan 08, 2008 4:29 am

Salve, Servilii Prisce, salvete magistri omnes -

Aurelius Timavus, in Comitiis, de nobis Curatoribus Novis quaesivit:

Primus Aurelius Timavus wrote:May I suggest that each of you consider posting a statement of your vision for the future of the Societas around that time?


Atque Marius, in Curia, ad rem dixit:

Aldus Marius wrote:... what the SVR needs most for the next couple of years is energy and ideas.


Taking the lack of active sodales as the major SVR problem, I have been thinking and offer what occurs to me. Please note, however, that I am coming to all this from a "front end" perspective and without the depth of familiarity many of you have. Please comment on these notions, half-baked as they are.

PROIECTA
As Curatores we wear multiple hats.

Curatores bear a responsibility for creating, requesting, nudging, cajoling (and ultimately approving) essays and articles from sodales or other enthusiasts in order to flesh out the SVR Collegia. Although already an officium of a Curator, it could also be a specific Honor for a sodalis, could it not? In so far as I can, I want to pursue this.

Another function is that of Promoter or Ambassador, as it were. My thought here would be about finding other Roman sites or groups (aside from NR) and seeking a sort of "sister city" arrangment by which we could promote the SVR there and they their org here. This could allow us to "cross-market" the SVR in the hope of attracting new sodales from elsewhere. It could also add to our own attractiveness by making us more of a hub or gateway. I am thinking of groups like the Gens Ambrosia, the YLE Colloquia Latina, I believe Marius mentioned The Roman Way in the Texas area, or any relevant Roman-enthusiast groups found on Yahoo and MSN and so on.

A Virtual Visual Tour of Rome, Ruins, and Reconstructions, here at the site. Couldn't we establish a sort of hub for images and info on surviving structures and sites, the ruins scattered all across the Mediterrenean and beyond, and on museums guarding the material remnants of Republic and Empire?

And how about some School and College Outreach? On the one hand, be a resource for students to whatever degree, and on the other a place for them to bathe, if you will, among neo-Romans such as we are. We could advertise the SVR in student news areas, in college student websites, in the actual college and university depts such as Comp Lit, Mythology, Religion, the Classics, Archeology, and so on.

What of vultus-vultum congregations or events? Our membership alone is basically too sparse and the distances too great, but to the extent we are linked to other groups and sites, it's more possible for SVR people to hook up with other Romani in our own areas. One regional Roman event, many grupistas; folk from SVR, locals from NR, some from, say, a "Kensington Legio XII" or a "Berkeley Classic Literature Society" or whatever.

A minor thing: I want to look at some improvement in our site's FAQs. Lurkers out there of my ilk, something less than a Scipio or Caesar in brain-power, might find it more welcoming to have some of the foggy bits explained more. Foggy? Exempla: How is it we have two sets of Collegia (one for the Forum (interactive) and another for the Society (where we publish articles)) yet don't differentiate them? What're all these references to Consuls or Praetors or Aediles when we only have Curatores? For message-board neophytes, disentangling the SVR (memberships, sodalitas, application for membership, organizational elements) from its Forum (the message board, simple registration, "subscription" in a simple sense, the separate "ranking" feature for posts) could help. Etc.

A lot of this has probably been hashed out before, but I may as well try to stir the discussion up.
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Postby Primus Aurelius Timavus on Tue Jan 08, 2008 2:19 pm

I'm about to leave for my trip now, but wanted to comment that I'm excited by these proposals and look forward to exploring them!

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Re: New Curatores and the Future

Postby Tiberius Dionysius Draco on Tue Jan 08, 2008 8:22 pm

Salve Iohane,

Valerius Claudius Iohanes wrote:Another function is that of Promoter or Ambassador, as it were. My thought here would be about finding other Roman sites or groups (aside from NR) and seeking a sort of "sister city" arrangment by which we could promote the SVR there and they their org here. This could allow us to "cross-market" the SVR in the hope of attracting new sodales from elsewhere. It could also add to our own attractiveness by making us more of a hub or gateway. I am thinking of groups like the Gens Ambrosia, the YLE Colloquia Latina, I believe Marius mentioned The Roman Way in the Texas area, or any relevant Roman-enthusiast groups found on Yahoo and MSN and so on.


There was talk of appointing a so called "Legatus" to serve as an ambassador for the SVR but nobody was ever officially appointed. Well, up until the first post in this thread that is :).

I have been in contact with a few Yahoo groups as well (I even bumped into other SVR members over there) but there is always room for improvement.

Valerius Claudius Iohanes wrote:A Virtual Visual Tour of Rome, Ruins, and Reconstructions, here at the site. Couldn't we establish a sort of hub for images and info on surviving structures and sites, the ruins scattered all across the Mediterrenean and beyond, and on museums guarding the material remnants of Republic and Empire?


This sounds like a very good idea to me and I'd be willing to contribute to it. Several members have visited ancient sites in the past and I'm sure they'd love to share their photo's and experiences with others.

We would have to work closely with Octavus on this because it would mean reworking a huge part of the site but I like the idea.

Valerius Claudius Iohanes wrote:A minor thing: I want to look at some improvement in our site's FAQs. Lurkers out there of my ilk, something less than a Scipio or Caesar in brain-power, might find it more welcoming to have some of the foggy bits explained more. Foggy? Exempla: How is it we have two sets of Collegia (one for the Forum (interactive) and another for the Society (where we publish articles)) yet don't differentiate them? What're all these references to Consuls or Praetors or Aediles when we only have Curatores? For message-board neophytes, disentangling the SVR (memberships, sodalitas, application for membership, organizational elements) from its Forum (the message board, simple registration, "subscription" in a simple sense, the separate "ranking" feature for posts) could help. Etc.


Completely agree, I've been here quite a while now and I'm still confused from time to time. Having everything in one place and clearly explained would help new and old members alike a lot.

Valerius Claudius Iohanes wrote:A lot of this has probably been hashed out before, but I may as well try to stir the discussion up.


And quite right you are. You have some very good ideas and though some of them have been touched upon, they seldomnly resulted in something happening. Perhaps it's finally time to change that.

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TO ROME ! ! ! Wow!

Postby Valerius Claudius Iohanes on Tue Jan 08, 2008 9:55 pm

Ave, Aurelii Timave - Have an awesome trip ... to ... ROMA ! ! !

Wow! I've yet to go.

Primus Aurelius Timavus wrote:I'm about to leave for my trip now, but wanted to comment that I'm excited by these proposals and look forward to exploring them! -Timavus


Vale bene ... per ... ROMAM ! ! !
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Overheard in Passing

Postby Aldus Marius on Tue Jan 08, 2008 10:34 pm

Salve, Iohanne Curator, et Salvete omnes!

Somebody's going to Rome???

*tries to transform into a Mouse so's he can stow away in Timavus' luggage*

*ends up in Wolf mode as usual*

*decides that would require too much explaining, the CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) accord being what it is...*

*becomes an equestrian Tribune again*

...and somebody's becoming a Legatus?

Oh. I'm becoming a Legatus.

(I'm becoming a Legatus!!) >({|8-)

Uti rogas, Servili Curator; as thou will it; willingly and gladly do I accept your appointment of me to the newly-created Legateship of the Texas-Oklahoma region. Laetus et libenter accipio!

I'll have more to say on this, and certainly on Iohannes' observations (short form: I entirely agree with him, and have some ideas), next 'Net-session. But Mater's just invited me to breakfast, so I've got to go (laetus et libenter, naturally)!

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More from Marius

Postby Aldus Marius on Thu Jan 10, 2008 11:08 am

Salvete iterum, omnes Sodales!

I've been saying, here and there for a long time, that if the SVR is to be anything more than an amicable Roman-themed discussion board, we don't really need more Sodales per se (I know that numbers aren't everything)...but more Sodales of a different kind. Anyone can find us on the Internet, and the last time I checked the site stats (admittedly not recently) we had more visitors than ever. More visitors...but less activity; last year we were going nuts trying to come up with ways to attract more people to the site, when in reality they were there, like Saul, in their "tens of thousands"...they just weren't doing anything!

So we seem to be easy enough to find. And we've been rebuilding our numbers post-Census by about three new Sodales a month. I really don't think mere visibility is the answer. The object of my Legateship is to put the Societas Via Romana in front of people in my area who already have Roman lives, and who live them primarily offline.

We have some of them here already: Members and associates who are reenactors, Latinists, or students and teachers in Roman-related fields of study such as archaeology and numismatics. (Shout-out to Joe Geranio, whose articles on Roman coins of the Iulio-Claudian era have shown me much of beauty and given me lots to think about.) Even the non-Sodales among them post; and most of the Sodales in this group are serving or have served as administrators or magistrates. That's not a coincidence. They were like that when they got here; they served when called upon; and then they just kept on keepin' on until most of their wells ran dry, which happens when nobody else steps up to relieve them in half-a-dozen years and counting.

I am going to be spending the next two years following a hunch: that, if a Roman-in-Spirit is already in the habit of actively expressing his or her Romanitas on the outside, then, if and when s/he joins the Societas, said personage will actively express Romanitas here as well. And I'm thinking that if I can bring enough of that kind of Sodales into our ranks, we'll have activity, vigor, fresh ideas and leadership capability well into the second decade of our communal existence.

And, umm...you don't have to be a legatus to go recruiting in your own community. If you're going to make a concerted effort of it, by all means PM a Curator about an appointment; but anyone can brag on us to their friends. I've been doing it sans the fancy nameplate for years. I have business cards, I've designed some giveaway bookmarks, and if there's enough interest I've been thinking of starting up a
cafepress.com shop for us. Some of you first heard me say that a few years ago, before I became Webmaster. It's still out there, as are my other projects; more below!

Curator Val. Claudius Iohannes:

> Taking the lack of active sodales as the major SVR problem, I have been thinking and offer
> what occurs to me. Please note, however, that I am coming to all this from a "front end"
> perspective and without the depth of familiarity many of you have.


Curator Iohanne, your "front-end perspective" is exactly what we need right now! (We've had plenty of my "back-end perspective"; see Equestrian notes. <g>) And you're hardly a newbie; amici Romani, this man is being too modest. He has been with the Societas since September of 2004 (AUC 2757)...that's three years and some of active participation, not much less than what I had on me when, having joined in '01, I became a Curator in late '05-early '06. So he is as qualified as anyone to speak on the matters of the Societas, and it is our own great blessing that he is still enough in touch with his early enthusiasms to be able to do so from a newbie's perspective. Others, Valerius Poplicola and Nonius Severus noteworthy among them, have also opened our eyes to new possibilities over the last few years, and I hope these and other such Sodales will join this discussion.

We've made a pretty good little name for ourselves as a Web site. We could probably roll along like that for another few years and most of us'd be happy. But read the founding documents*: We're not just a Web site. We are, or were conceived as, a collection of circuli, little Roman "cell movements" in our communities, who would learn, teach, revive and follow the Roman Way wherever we were, and meet here to compare notes with other circles. In this way we are, or could be, something very like the Internet itself--a "network of [Roman peer-to-peer] networks", and potentially just as viral! >({|;-]

* Founding documents: The current and previous Regulae are on the site, in the Regula section; their Statements of Purpose are instructive:
- Before the Concilium: http://www.societasviaromana.net/regula ... -final.php
- Current Regula: http://www.societasviaromana.net/regula ... is2758.php
Also on-site, though not yet linked to, is a post I wrote to the Conditores before we began, entitled "A New Foundation". This was sort of our "talking paper" when we left Nova Roma, and many of its points became core concepts for the Societas early on. Here's your sneak-peak:
http://www.societasviaromana.net/aedili ... dation.htm .

On to specifics:

Recognising contributors of essays for the Web site

Curator Iohannes:

> Although already an officium of a Curator, it could also be a specific Honor for a sodalis,
> could it not? In so far as I can, I want to pursue this.


OK, I'm tired of teasing you guys about my soon-to-be-proposed tweak to the Board's ranking system. The admin's setup page for the ranks gives the option of specifying "special" ranks, assigned by hand rather than by post-count, and each with its own little icon. I was thinking we could have "special ranks" and icons for Sodales who have, among other things, made essay contributions, and maybe even an icon for the contributing non-Sodalis (we've had several!). The icons would appear over your Avatar, right under your Board-rank, next to all your posts. More later, including illustrations; but that's the gist.

"Sister Cities"

Curator Iohannes:

> My thought here would be about finding other Roman sites or groups (aside from NR)
> and seeking a sort of "sister city" arrangment by which we could promote the SVR
> there and they their org here.


Actually, now we can readily do this with Nova Roma, too! An NR Webmaster, L Vitellius Triarius, was doing a Topography-of-Rome research project that has morphed into a Wiki called Mons Aventinus. This is the closest I've been to actually living in Rome of approximately the Severan era. It's got the Seven Hills, the clivi between them, the distinct neighborhoods of the time (yes, you too can live in the Suburra!). Anyone, NR civis or not, can obtain an insula on the Ianiculum or the Campus Martius; pick one of the streets, edit the page to "move into" the building, and decorate to taste. Novaromani can pick any hill and can also choose to occupy a domus or a villa, depending on their tax status. There are shop spaces for merchants, Novaromani or otherwise. Any resident's space can be linked to their Roman group or other site of choice; I have been assured that nobody's going to try to "assimilate" us...and Mons Aventinus was already linked to us when I first started haunting the place!

I'm still hoping Curator Servilius can take an evening or two to intro me around, but...if I like it, and the neighbors don't mind the Little Dog, I've got my eye on a vacant insula on the Campus Martius' Via Tecta that's just beggin' for an SVR makeover!! <mfeg>

Outreach

Curator Iohannes:

> I am thinking of groups like the Gens Ambrosia, the YLE Colloquia Latina, I believe
> Marius mentioned The Roman Way in the Texas area, or any relevant Roman-enthusiast
> groups found on Yahoo and MSN and so on.


I'll be doing what I can in my region; it's well-seeded with active Latinists and several reenactor Legions, plus TRW, the SCA (different era, same approach), and all those Novaromani I recruited nine or ten years ago when I was governing the Southwestern Province. >({|;-)

I probably won't be doing much actual travel this first year; I'm still not up to a long road-trip. Assuming I become so as time progresses, I've been working with Piscinus and Octavius on holding a "Tornado Alley Roman Rally" for sometime late Spring. This will involve representatives of at least three, and possibly four, Roman groups, with interests ranging from political simulation to crafts and religion, coming in from as far away as Chicago and meeting (probably) in central Texas. I hope to drive to that one, and fly to at least one other event, likely a RenFaire or a TRW gig. I should be fully roadworthy by next year; meanwhile, I can still talk to folks.

And I share Iohannes' observation that our colleges are underexplored. I'd love to see some of our circuli as on-campus clubs; I don't think even Nova Roma has any, unless they were founded by cives acting on their own. (Not encouraged over there.) We could give talks (maybe even in garb or kit) to Western-Civ classes, archaeology-club meetings...hei, even ROTC (TRW does it!). We, Romans-in-Spirit, could be everyone's favorite study-buddies; there's nothing quite like learning Rome from somebody who talks like s/he's been there. We'd have interesting perspectives, I think, even on some less-likely subjects--cultural geography, pro exemplo, or comparative religion. Did I tell you I got a whole degree just taking classes that fed my passion for the Heritage? --We're an education in ourselves.

Visuals

Curator Iohannes:

> Couldn't we establish a sort of hub for images and info on surviving structures and sites,
> the ruins scattered all across the Mediterrenean and beyond, and on museums
> guarding the material remnants of Republic and Empire?


Actually, this has already been done better and for longer at sites like Maecenas: Images of Ancient Greece and Rome; several of their public-use images are decorating our own Pages. For the more immersive approach, there are a few Virtual Rome projects, some stand-alone and some in venues like Ancient Worlds-Rome. Mons Aventinus hopes to be one eventually, and, refreshingly, while of course they have buildings, they're basically starting by fostering a neighborly 'feel' among the residents. This is done by means of a chatroom, the inhabitants' Wiki "talk pages", and a "Taverna" e-List to which the residents subscribe.

(You'd think I'd know a few more Virtual Rome sites off the top of my head, but it's been a while since I had the kind of free time that really allows for exploration. See why I'd rather have a boss than be one!!) <g>

Tiberius Dionysius Draco:

> This sounds like a very good idea to me and I'd be willing to contribute to it.
> Several members have visited ancient sites in the past and I'm sure they'd love
> to share their photos and experiences with others.


Now, this I see a definite niche for.

We used to have, a long time ago, a section of the site for members' "personal pages". Sodales would write short bios and contribute photos of the people or places that meant something to them. The page could be anything, really; a chatty little intro, documentation of a pilgrimage, all shades of gravitas et levitas in-between. I don't think this was much-used, and it certainly never met its full potential; it was a bit of work for the Aedilis too, as he had to actually upload everything. If we choose to Wikify portions of the site, it's be very easy to set up personal pages again; every "editor" (contributing user) of a Wiki automatically has one. The big plus: You can add/upload things yourself--no need to e-mail Marius so's he can put it on the server for you! (Have I got Cleo's vote yet?) >({|;-)

The site

Curator Iohannes:

> A minor thing: I want to look at some improvement in our site's FAQs. Lurkers...
> might find it more welcoming to have some of the foggy bits explained more.
> ...For message-board neophytes, disentangling the SVR...from its Forum...could
> help.


Gaah--!! I've been meaning to rewrite that thing for years, and that's the reason why: the "organisational" material no longer even remotely describes who we ar and how we've run things since the Concilium reforms of 2005. Vide the Aediles thread for specifics, especially my posts calling for Tibi Draco's flayed hide from before I became the Responsible Party! (Serves me right, I'm thinkin' he's thinkin'...) Barring further health distractions, this and the Regula section will be my major emphasis for this year, quod vult Octavius.

But that kind of gets back to my main theme here, in the Curia, and in almost every Comitia debate since the Concilium: We need to disentangle the SVR from its Forum. Newcomers may be excused for thinking this Board is all there is to us. I hope I've shown otherwise; and I hope this will be the couple of years when the rest of the Roman world discovers this, as we mean to discover it for ourselves. Then we'll be something to get excited about!!

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