The International Federation of Online Clubs and Aquatic Societies
THE organization dedicated to the promotion of the fishkeeping hobby worldwide
This section of the site has been introduced specifically to allay the reservations expressed by some potential members who felt the site to be a little too impersonal and requested the security of being able to question and talk to individuals rather than an amorphous website.
This (our website) is presently based on a server in Canada and the United States and has therefore to conform with all laws and specifications as laid down by both the UK government and the service provider. Bravenet Web Services are providing this service . Our site also conforms to all current US and Australian Federal obligations.
ALL OFFICES OF IFOCAS ARE HONORARY - NO SALARIES ARE PAID - ANNUAL ACCOUNTS ARE PUBLISHED TO MEMBERS
IFOCAS was born out of many hours of heated discussion and debate among top aquarists worldwide. Some of the people that took part in this prenatal discussion have been aquarists for many decades, some are not yet aquarists at all but have a keen interest in becoming proficient in this field. In general terms the malaise within the aquatic hobby community was recognized - this has basically been caused by two major factors. Firstly, lifestyles have changed since the heady days of full membership books and heavily attended shows of two or three decades ago and, secondly; the majority of clubs and societies have not even attempted to adapt to the change - most have now perished and this loses forever all of the experience accumulated by their members which can no longer be passed on to future generations.
To ignore the fact that the vast majority of today's fishkeepers use the internet for information and would not even consider wasting an evening attending an old-style type club meeting, where discussions over show standards and other irrelevant matters occupied valuable learning time, is to commit the offender into aquatic oblivion. Bowl shows can still play a part, but information on care and breeding and transmission of ideas and knowledge need to come first and foremost. Demographically any society or club with less than 10 percent of its membership under 25 years old has serious membership renewal problems. A study conducted by Aquarian foods also showed that the average fishkeeper who was not a member of a club or society only kept fish for an average of three years. How many of your members have been with the club longer than this?
The outlines of the very abridged topics above will be hotly debated for many years to come but this is for other groups worldwide to solve. In the USA the FAAS should be assisting, in the UK the FBAS are now moving forwards on this issue, in Canada the CAAS should be assisting and it is up to your delegates to these associations to ask what is being done in these areas. - in the meantime we are assisting. We are specifically directing new members to the local clubs. (see Statistics page )
We are requesting that ALL online web aquatic answering services help us in this regard. We are having successes. We are also having dismal failures. (We had to approach one very prestigious body seven times over a six month period before we received any form of reply. We are still awaiting responses from two others listed above.)
We are giving free web sites and site set -up services to clubs that wish to show the world they are there. We are liaising with the trade to see how joint promotions can be improved. We are liaising with public aquaria to arrange local visits by groups of enthusiasts. We are publicizing aquatic events worldwide.
We have had a few brickbats thrown at us. The main one seemed to vaguely revolve around asking us why we are attempting to 'muscle-in' when there are already organizations doing our work. This is patently untrue. We are the only organization worldwide undertaking what we earnestly believe is a major salvage operation; an operation needed simply because many of these other 'bodies' have abjectly failed in their responsibility to ensure the hobby continues in good stead. One only has to look at the organized hobby today to see the problems that lie unresolved. The isolationism expressed by our detractors is indeed our raison d'etre
The hobby and trade and the scientific community need to work together - both to protect wild stocks and encourage public awareness and enjoyment- this can be achieved
This said, we cannot work alone. We need the help of all seriously committed aquarists everywhere.
(By the way we established most connections above in our first three months - so please do not criticize the occasional mistake unless you'd like to join in and help - we cannot posssibly make) membership any easier than by clicking a few links on the application form.
Saul Radley (Computer Skills Adviser- original webmaster)
Ray (Kingfish) Lucas ( U.S.Liason)
John Clark , B.Sc (Club Liason - England)
Wedad Taktak (Arabic Translations)
K. Panteli (German Translation adviser)
Gerald Jennings, (European Webmaster, ) who is getting a little aggrieved by groups joining us solely for their own benefit and not bothering to adhere to our few membership requirements) "We are all doing this job freely solely with the best interest of our wonderful hobby in mind- so please don't mess us about".
Revised January 2012
Members who do not comply with membership conditions will have their membership revoked and all references to their sites deleted, so, is the IFOCAS logo showing on your site right now!
I FOCAS is a Federation devoted to the promotion of fishkeeping worldwide