The next big change... my prediction

by No Apologies 21 Replies latest jw friends

  • aquagirl

    when i was a witless back in the 70's,and 80's,folks did buy their own literature..i remember the green bibles were the el cheapo ones,but the rich dubs could have the nice black or brown leatherette bibles,some monogrammed..i even remember the price of a green bible was 3 bux..the leather ones were outrageous,like 7 or something..mags were a nickle,when did they stop selling literature to their,um,publishers?

  • OnTheWayOut

    kid-a called it. The pioneers will want a discount or say they can't afford the literature.
    The elders and many others will be able to afford it, but won't want to spend the money
    either because they don't place many, or they are too tight with their money.

    The low-hours publishers who clean offices at night will place tracts. The organization
    will not sell much literature now that they switched to the donation basis.

    This might work, too- If nobody is buying, reduce production. They will continue to
    pressure active dubs to give, give, give. It will become commonplace for visitors to
    say "They might as well pass a plate."

  • garybuss

    The Watch Tower Conglomerate is making a stupid business mistake in my opinion. They're ignoring the 16,675,113 total number of supporters willing to be counted by attending a Witness meeting. They discount 10 million customers as unimportant and not worthy of providing a product for them that they can accept.

    Fewer Witnesses by aggregate, are willing to follow the Knorr model of the 40's and 50's. They don't want to do door to door soliciting, they don't want to go to 5 meetings a week and restudy that which has been restudied before. But . . . they have an untapped willingness and an untapped bank account.

    If I owned the Watch Tower Publishing Corporation, I'd set to providing a climate to exploit those 10 million rather than brag about the number once and forget them. Those 10 million largely will never be publishers and meeting attenders. It's stupid to think the current elders and pioneers can or will make converts of those people. The elders and pioneers can't sustain themselves within the current business model. Now, natural growth is shut off and natural loyalty is sabotaged.

    I'd open the organization doors with a three door approach to marketing. No more restrictions and no more snubbing and shunning for starters. Door one could be a casual association, almost secular for the people who don't really like religion very well. Their programs could be helping hand type of things, like helping shut-ins with chores or meals and helping single parents with day care and lots of other helping behaviors.

    The middle door would be a social door with a once a week pot luck meal, games for the kids, and a place for adults to visit. No count and open to all. Street clothes suggested, tattoos and piercings welcome. After the current Witnesses got used to not being mean, this meal could be expanded to invite the community.

    Doors one and two would mostly be directed by the women and maybe some men if they can be passive.

    Door three would be a version of the current model but friendlier. They could have weekly meetings and talk about god's murder plans and petting lions in paradise and they could go door to door if that's what they like, but door to door labor is no longer an obligation for group acceptance.

    Now after I have access to the 16 million, I'm gonna develop products for them that they ask for and money won't be a problem because they will freely give when they're happy. The reason they struggle now, is because people aren't happy.

  • Frannie Banannie
    Frannie Banannie

    It's the strangest thing, idnit?

    The WTS didn't begin it's decline until they began following a loving bible principle to give freely. Other religious orgs have given freely for centuries and aren't suffering decline.

    Geez! Does this mean that the WTS isn't scripturally approved of? They don't have the God of the scriptures approval?


  • OnTheWayOut

    Gary, your suggestion probably isn't fantasy to them.

    They would love to mainstream the JW's if they can figure out how.
    Their meat and potatoes has always been the bizarre cult teachings- selling the
    ideas that are different from mainstream. Since that is no longer true, they would
    love to flip-flop like the Mormons managed to do. Somehow, running television
    commercials offering free Mormon books to people did not seem objectionable to
    the public. One day, WTS would love to try that (minus the "free" part)

    If they declare the preaching work finished, they could say "Associates are
    welcome, formerly shunned are being welcomed back. You gotta know Jehovah to
    get in, but He's done announcing his Kingdom. Now, we just enjoy each other's
    company and stay faithful and wait for the big A to drop. If you aren't ready to
    commit to baptism, okay- just hang out with us to see that we are normal."

    It could happen. Stop giving the cult ideas. Personally, I think they are going to
    swing thru many wierd ideas and try all kinds of stuff. I see some flip-flop on
    education and having children- making those good ideas. I see an effort to regather
    the DF'ed ones. I see more liberal policies on blood- they will remove the DA and DF
    from accepting blood and just make it a removal of privileges (elder, MS, pioneer)
    The printing company will constantly offer cheaper stuff like tracts and invitations to
    keep the flock busy. Down the road, they will abandon door-to-door, perhaps as Gary
    suggests, or perhaps by switching to a FOR-PROFIT publishing company.

  • willyloman

    It's always fascinating to speculate about the next direction the WTS might take. But I always come back to the realization that this is a highly dysfunctional group and the few things you can be sure of include:

    1. They will continue to make bad choices and decisions

    2. They will use their considerable survival skills to avoid complete self destruction

    3. They will always be able to attract people who are themselves dysfunctional

    Most of the speculation posts here on JWD contain really good ideas that would be plausible if the WTS had a rational core. But the Society views any suggestion to "mainstream" or "lighten the load" as caving in to Satan's pressure. They simply cannot abandon their conviction that constant struggle with satanic forces is the thing that "proves" they are God's chosen ones.

  • metatron

    I'm sure they are tempted by the thought of charging for literature but as others have pointed out, it could cause a sudden plunge in

    placements as publishers couldn't avoid paying for this landfill-destined pulp.

    The other objection is spiritual: they probably can't do this without some realization that Jehovah isn't paying their bills anymore,

    as Charles Taze Russell thought.


  • No Apologies
    No Apologies

    I see some saying this wouldn't work because so many JW's are poor. But you forget, those poor JWs(myself included) had no problem paying for the literature before the donation arrangement. JWs historically have always been relatively poor, and yet the Watchtower made a fortune off of selling them literature. All this would be is a return to the way things were for the first 100 years or so of the Watchtower's existence.

    Pioneers of course, back in the day, got a discount on literature. There is no reason there couldn't be a discount club for pioneers, or a simple rebate on large orders.

    They charged for literature before, there is no reason they can't do it again.

    No Apologies

  • Poztate
    Now after I have access to the 16 million, I'm gonna develop products for them that they ask for and money won't be a problem because they will freely give when they're happy. The reason they struggle now, is because people aren't happy.

    That is the real key to success. You have to give people what they WANT. Just take a look at all the televangelists and see how well it has worked for them.

    The business model of the WTBTS has to change in this direction and then it will be a success again.

    OH SHIT... I don't want them to be a success again...Any Bethel Spies please disregard this message.....

  • OnTheWayOut

    1. They will continue to make bad choices and decisions

    2. They will use their considerable survival skills to avoid complete self destruction

    3. They will always be able to attract people who are themselves dysfunctional

    I have hopes that they will disappear, but I tend to agree with Willy. We will see severe reductions
    as they try their bad choices. Some bad choices might be rallying behind the next "date of destruction"
    that Freddy Franz sent them from his heavenly throne. My personal hope is that they stop shunning
    disfellowshipped ones, hoping many will come back, but allowing many inactive or faders to leave w/o
    the shunning.

    I see the magazine change as a decent business move for a corporation. I expect it won't be enough
    because people don't really donate for a WT and Awake these days, and the dubs don't put as much
    in the box as they used to. They will have to go to just the study issue and drop the others eventually.
    Then they will be the Watch Tower Paperback Bible and Tract Society- offering just those.

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