My initial impression when I first read the original message was that this was a solution in search of a problem. But I kept quiet, thinking perhaps there had been some incident that prompted this new policy. After reading the ensuing comments I found such was not the case, and further that most if not all of the 20+ respondants to the original posting opined that this new policy was both unnecessary and ill-advised.
"Becoming a member of TekScopes does not give a member permission to
contact another member outside of TekScopes without prior permission."
I am a member of a sizable number of support groups such as TekScopes, and none of them have such a philosophy that I am aware of and certainly none that have an expressed policy comparable to this. In fact many of the groups I belong to have a "Send Private Message" link to facilitate private messaging between member. Asking permission to speak to another member of a support group runs contrary to the basic concept of a support group, which is the free sharing of information and ideas.
This new policy is bordering on a Catch-22 - very much like "Before you can send me a private message, you must first send me a private message asking permission to send me a private message". Except that we must first send a public message to the entire group asking permission to send you a private message, thereby burdening the system with messages which have no relevance to anyone but the two affected members, and burdening everyone else with reading superfluous messages that are meaningless to them. As already mentioned, this is "Through the Looking Glass" logic.
So add me to the list of respondents who feel that this new policy was both unnecessary and ill-advised. But Dennis is the group owner, he has the conch, and he can make any rules he pleases, regardless of whether they are needed or supported by the membership.
Note: any member of this group who wishes to contact me privately may do so without prior permission