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The Bylaws
v. 0609

Appendix 3

The Appendices are provided as detailed explanations and backgrounds of the policies and procedures of  Each Appendix contains delineated topic Sections that are not necessarily related.  Appendices are included to provide additional explanations, clarifications, and resources.  They are not required reading, but you may be referred to them if you require further information on a certain subject.  They represent the collected body of knowledge about many topics. 

The Appendices are written and edited by the Moderator Team of, with contributions gleaned from the email of the BackpackGearTest group.


Appendix 1 - How Works
Appendix 2 - Editing
Appendix 3 - About Rules and How to Change Them
Appendix 4 - Test Calls, Test Applications, Newbie Rule
Appendix 5 - The Apprentice Program
Appendix 6 - All About Report Writing
Appendix 7 - A Lesson in Pictures
Appendix 8 - Copyright, Fair Use, and Links Policies

Back to Bylaws

Appendix 3 - About Rules, and How to Change Them

There are many rules, regulations, requirements, recommendations, and procedures surrounding  These are necessary to keep organized for efficiency.  Sometimes they are wonderfully helpful, while other times they seem a curse; but the rules, as specifically laid down in these Bylaws, are tried and true methods.  Like anything man-made, they aren't perfect, but they serve to keep us on track and on the trail.  The rules and guidelines are here to help all of us - List Members and Moderators alike - not to be an onerous burden. 

If you have an idea or suggestion about how is run, we would like to hear it.  We are always looking for ways to improve our group and make a positive impact on the backpacking community at large.  Before you take up the task of making a suggestion, you are encouraged to examine the information provided in the Appendices and to understand why certain rules and regulations are in place.  If you need help understanding why something is like it is, you can direct your inquiry to the BGTWeb group.

When you have a good understanding of our process, and you still want to make a suggestion or offer an idea, clearly state your case on the BGTWeb group.  From there your idea or suggestion can be discussed, and possibly implemented.  Be fully aware, however, that is not a democracy, and that final rulings from Jerry or the Moderators are just that - final.

One Outlook on Rules - H.L. Hussmann III, BGT Tester

I personally am an advocate of as many "rules" as are necessary to put out great reports. One of the things that attracted me to was the level of professionalism that was apparent here. I have looked at some of the reports from early on and the reports that are being produced nowadays and there is no comparison. The more current reports are far more excellent.

Basically, if I am a company selling outdoor products it wouldn't take me long investigating to see that Jerry and the rest of the Moderators know what they are doing and are committed to producing professional results. A huge part of that is the level of 'rules' surrounding the group. As far as people dropping out because of the rules level, that doesn't make sense to me, just sounds like some people who want to do their own thing and I would think that you would want to avoid those kind of people on the list anyway, no need for any wild cards when dealing with multi-million dollar companies.

Also, as a relative newbie, it was the 'rules' that helped me jump in and become involved. I was able to read through the guide and say to myself, "Hey, I can do this" because it was pretty clear what was required of me. I say, the more clear the expectations (rules) the better because it helps people who are considering getting involved to count the cost.

Just some thoughts. Thanks for creating a place that allows shmoes like myself to step in and state their opinions. I am excited about and would love to play any part in making it as excellent as possible.

Product tested and reviewed in each Formal Test Report has been provided free of charge by the manufacturer to Upon completion of the Test Series the writer is permitted to keep the product. Owner Reviews are based on product owned by the reviewer personally unless otherwise noted.

If you are an avid backpacker, we are always looking for enthusiastic, quality reviewers. Apply here to be a gear tester.

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BackpackGearTest software copyright David Anderson