There are many well intentioned discussions at the moment about professional associations for riggers and / or models.
Many terrible people love to join professional associations because it lends them the seeming of legitimacy without much actual effort in contrast to those that build their own reputation by actually achieving something.
Professional associations have their uses for concrete definable professions with real qualifications that can be subjectively determined. i.e. there’s a reason why these exist commonly for trades.
Also many associations exist to represent their members in some way. If so who runs it and how is it going to be paid for?
Or do you want or the kind that only exist to provide information and a nexus of communication for members?
Do people mean something like the General Medical Council that can strike of Doctors so they can’t practice. If so how do you enforce this?
Eventually associations with bad members are devalued and become worthless regardless of any good works due to bad members. People stop trusting it.
So you just have to stop bad people joining right? Well how?
This has sprung up in the wake of revelations about some well known presenters. So you wouldn’t let them in your association right? Why not? Until recently they had as far as many were concerned good reputations.
Their turning out to not be the kind of people you’d have wanted associated with your professional association wasn’t necessarily predictable.
So now you’re going to expel them right? How? You’re going to have a tribunal with witnesses and a trusted panel of adjudicators who are senior professionals. How do you determine who they should be?
Even if you do this and it all works how do you pay for it?
It works with Doctors because there are a lot of Doctors, there’s a public demand and expectation of excellence and a defined educational and career structure, big employers, public accountability and recourse to the law.
I think doing that for riggers is problematic at best.
So maybe less ambitious. Maybe just have a code of conduct to sign up to and a badge to display or something. Great, pretty much cost free to anyone who wants to claim that as a positive no matter what their true motivation.
ETA: A little further thought on voluntary codes of conduct
While I realise these things are coming up from an intention to make things better and though this post may seem like a bit of a downer I don’t know if an association can work as some kind of governing body. After all how many real professional riggers are there in the world and how many of them would actually subscribe to a common code, and what could an association do further than say they don’t endorse that person any more.
Codes of conduct aren’t a bad thing but they’ve been around for various things for as long as I can remember and have certainly provoked a lot of argument. And though I’m not going to say that it’s impossible I’ve never seen one that’s been universally agreed on.
Just a random thought off the top of my head. Always a chance I’ve missed something.