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Firstly I would like to start by saying I am not an internet troll and I am not setting out to knock or belittle anyone. However I have felt so strongly about the ‘Gofundme’ story which has evolved over the months to furnish 1 individual with a £3000 to £4000 trike plus £100 or maybe even £1000 of kit I feel I have to share my view and maybe add so constructive criticism.

I have read road.cc for some time now and never contributed but it is a great source of information for a sport and recreational activity I am so passionate about. I am also a twitter account user, therefore on numerous occasions I have seen plea’s to help get Keith back to cycling due to the early onset of Parkinson plus read the story he wrote about how difficult life has been since an early age.

When this story first hit my twitter feed I contacted Keith directly and expressed my sympathy for his recent diagnoses as I wouldn’t wish it on anyone, however I did question his ethics as to whether he should think about his current lifestyle and selling some of his toys and gadgets before asking strangers for their hard earned cash to get him another VERY expensive bike/gadget.

Keith has made his life very public by asking for this and with the information he posts it doesn’t take long to realise that cycling isn’t is only passion as he is also a guitarist, he is constantly on the internet and has a computer and a Android tablet, video camera, gorilla pod tripod type thing and he also has a smart phone and Sky tv, possibly a GPS device?, £60 - £70 of Olympics 50p!!, this is a lot for someone on benefits and who states cycling is his only passion!

Maybe my up bringing has been different, but I have always been taught to live within your means and only have what you can afford. I know so many people who work 40 + hours a week and struggle to survive without any of the luxuries Keith has acquired.

Keith is very obviously a kind and caring individual after reading his tweets and forum posts as he is very helpful to so many others, however maybe it is time to spend some of this energy on himself and look at his own life.
My own personal views are that he sees material goods as a means of making him happy and getting him back to as normal life as possible, however this will only be a shortterm fix.
I think it is fantastic that he is now looking for work and I think it will turn his life around, but maybe this should have been his first approach. If he is able to work, find work, start working, earn money and then purchase a trike, this is what he should have done. This is how 99.99% of the society works and it should be the same for him.
Why does he need the trike over winter when Scotland is likely to be under feet of snow soon? The next 5 months would have been even more time to save

Are there others near Keith who have Parkinson? As this trike has been funded by the generosity of others. Could the use of the trike also help others rather than just 1 individual? Is there a Parkinsons society near where Keith lifes where those with the conditions could hire the trike when it is not in use?
This would help more people and also give all those that use it greater freedom and also enjoy the activity we are all so passionate about. If all those that use the trike become enthusiasts it will give them the motivation to save and purchase their own trike!

If I am being brutally honest, I have read Keiths Gofundme page and he sees himself as a victim as he has tried things but keep quitting because things got difficult and he has continually been supported by society or others without taking responsibility for his own actions whether that is free accommodation, free sky tv and now free trike and the relentless gifts he has received over the last few months.

What happens if the £3000 trike brakes or is damaged or if ‘god forbid’ it is stolen, will there be another plea to the cycling community to help? Is it insured ?

Also, I have noticed that recently he has posted comments about ‘where can I buy x, y and z’ and on numerous occasions he has been sent these items free. Please think long and hard about this approach as peoples goodwill and generosity will reach a limit (please take this comment on board).
I have also noticed that he has been sent items that don’t appear on the auction list, i.e. Castelli clothing, an action video camera etc, if he is truly honest that his only passion is to get back cycling he will put these items up for auction/sale and donate the funds to charity. I am sure Parkinson or MIND charities will greatly appreciate the donation to help lots of people rather than just 1.

Also, he really needs to look at his lifestyle, If he REALLY wants to become employable he needs to get into a routine, not staying up until 5am in the morning on twitter and the computer and sleeping all day. Take all your tech out of your room, get to bed at a reasonable time and up at 8am, this will get you into a routine which will support a working life.

Keith, as I have said earlier, I think you are such a giving person and helpful and kind to others, but please don’t see FREE materialistic things as the way to happiness, it will not solve anything in the long run.

As someone who has also suffered from ill-health in recent years and as a result anxiety and depression I understand some of what you are going through. Maybe this has been part of my motivation to spend some time writing this and why I feel so strongly about my comments. It appears I am the only one with these views and I hope I don’t get my account suspended for these comments. As I said at the start it is not meant to be harmful or a personal attach. All I want is fairness and maybe to get EVERYONE to look at themselves and others and what is right.

Please everyone continue this amazing generosity that we have seen over the last few months, but maybe to help communities and groups rather than 1 individual.

Regards
Tim

51 comments

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londonplayer [620 posts] 3 years ago
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Tim, don't spoil things. I'm just about to put out my gofundme appeal for a Colnago with Dura Ace.  4

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jova54 [651 posts] 3 years ago
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Well. The season of goodwill is truly dead and buried!
Do I detect sour grapes?
No one made those people that gave money or goods do it, perhaps some saw a commercial benefit from it but most gave because they wanted to.
My Dad died from Parkinson's but he was considerably older than Keith. To have it so young must be devastating and hard to deal with. It was probably this that hit a chord with the cyclists on here, knowing someone had a passion for cycling but might be unable to fulfil due to illness. It took courage for Keith to go on-line with his appeal and it wasn't him who first raised it on road.cc
Appreciate that it might not sit well with you Tim but I don't feel exploited.

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notfastenough [3674 posts] 3 years ago
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I think there is a difference between simply viewing material items as a route to happiness and a material item which is merely an enabler to supporting a more positive overall outlook.

From a personal point of view, I felt that yeah sure, everyone faces challenges in one form or another, and I favour absolute independence in terms of how I achieve something. The fact is that I've got my health and have manoeuvred myself into a position where I can do a job that I (mostly) enjoy, and earn a good chunk for doing so. I have little sympathy for habitual 'woe is me' types, since I have one as a sibling who refuses to help themselves despite ample opportunity and potential.

However, there's nothing terrible about admitting that you need a leg up. I had been conscious for a while that I hadn't given to many charities recently, and while I hope Keith isn't offended by my terming his situation as 'charity', the fact is that I like to know that my cash is going to what I think it's going to. A big charity feeling the need to employ a CEO for £100k+ isn't really what I have in mind. Or indeed the cancer charity which was recently documented on this site as paying a sportive organiser £100k in order to be the official charity partner (essentially gambling that more than £100k will be raised by riders seeking sponsorship from friends/families). Many of my/my wife's charitable contributions are also to individuals, often to buy a hot breakfast sandwich, coffee and a couple of pieces of fruit for a random big issue vendor when we're in town. The look on the recipient's face is a great reward, and although I've never met Keith, the whole incapacity benefit/sicknote/EOP/depression thing was starting to look like a trap where none of the enablers were functioning in order to get him out of the house, improve his outlook, convince him that people weren't all indifferent to life's difficulties, and generally prevent a downward spiral.

I appreciate that it sounds like you've also faced your own hurdles to get over and it's great that you seem to have developed a sense of self-ownership for improving your situation, but one person's mental health issues are not the same as another's. I just hope this kickstarts some positive events for Keth.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 3 years ago
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Well hello again Tim, I do remember your tweets from when I first started my GoFundMe.

I'll just address a couple of points you raise as to what I have. Which I did also on twitter.

he is also a guitarist (with one £20 guitar from a chairty shop, after previously owning 7 and selling them all over the years.

he is constantly on the internet and has a computer and a Android tablet (Yes, I am on the internet alot, but if you knew my situation, then you would see why, I don't own a computer, its my Granny's whom I live with and I do have an Android tablet, which was a Christmas present two years ago)

video camera (I am borrowing one at the moment, but as you rightly said, I have been given one for free)

gorilla pod tripod type thing (it was £4.99 on ebay in 2007 when I thought about starting a video blog)

he also has a smart phone (I do not have a mobile phone at all)

Sky tv (yes my Granny has a sky tv package, because she cannot receive freeview in this area)

possibly a GPS device? (Built into the android tablet)

£60 - £70 of Olympics 50p (I think you will find I said somewhere, It was £31. My Granny collects them from her work as they come in and gives them to me to swap for 50p of mine)

I'm not going to address your personal views, because everyone is entitled to them.

As for the Castelli jacket, it will be put into my auction. That was always the intent, even though I was told the donor was quite happy for me to keep it or auction it.

You will find out in the near future what is happening to anything left over from my appeal and auction. But just to say, it will be going to help another cyclist in the UK with some independence, he's only 10 years old.

But no doubt you'll find things to nit pick about him

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trikeman [309 posts] 3 years ago
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Wow, that was close.......

As I uploaded my response to this drivel spouting bigot, the website went down - phew, good job too as I would, no doubt, be banned from my favorite forum by now and I'm not wasting my time now re-writing it.

Go find some tax dodger to report and squeel 'it's not fair'.....

Oh, Lordy.

Regards,

Trikeman.  3

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trikeman [309 posts] 3 years ago
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Gkam,
good response - I wouldn't have stooped as low as to answer him if I was in your boots (he's probably getting a little moist at the 'power').

As said above, we are a community and if I can help anyone I will, whatever one of the fledgling 'Cammeron's harbingers' spouts - It's got NOW'T to do with him.

Good on you mate, keep the spirits up and don't let the self-riteous 'gentleman' hit you back.

Regards

Trikeman.  3

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Barry Fry-up [187 posts] 3 years ago
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I chucked keith a few quid because he sounded like he could do with a boost. and i'm sure most of the other people on here that donated did the same. I'm not rich, but i'm not unemployed, a sufferer from depression and diagnosed with parkinson's before i'm 30 either. boy could use some luck. presumably you posted here because the daily mail hasn't run a story on it?

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Leviathan [1928 posts] 3 years ago
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Well the world is shades of gray; I was a little surprise at the mention of depression in the appeal, but you have to credit him for being open. It can be very difficult to unwind the past choices anyone makes. He might have these toys but not everyone is an ebay whizz at getting rid of them and it is not his fault he is now off the road.

At the end of the day I think the word to consider here is 'community', many people choose to give money to the appeal and a good chunk of it came from people trying to help another young lad at the same time:
http://road.cc/content/forum/72460-one-gkams-old-bikes

I am sure he would have hit his appeal target without this exchange, so credit Gkam for giving someone else a chance too. Not every appeal for help is just profit motivated.

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Leviathan [1928 posts] 3 years ago
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Typical, I spent so long looking for a link and trying to write a balanced post that answered the OP without slagging anyone off, that Keith had already posted. And it was a beautiful back-hand down the line, worthy of Andy Murray himself.

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Dizzy [68 posts] 3 years ago
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I had to think long & hard as how to respond, because my initial thoughts weren't pleasant.
I suppose it must be so wonderful to be able to judge someone without ever having walked in their shoes Tim.

When I first heard of Keiths appeal through a friend I made a donation, it wasn't much, because I don't have much to give. Since then I have had the pleasure of being able to get to know Keith over the 'net He is a great bloke, kind, caring & willing to help others wherever/however he can.
He may have in your opinion lots of nice things, as do I, things that were bought when I had a good job & earning good money, things that have been bought for me & my children as presents.
Times aren't so good now, But we still have the nice things. If I thought selling some of them would help I would, but those things are not sellable, simply because the resale value of them once even a few months old is minimal.
Keith made an appeal, which in itself took courage, no one was forced into donating, no strong arm tactics were used.. Folk simply saw a young man, that needed a helping hand & were happy to give it, small or large, money or items That was our choice.

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dave atkinson [6214 posts] 3 years ago
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incidentally, the reason keith was up til 5am the other day was because he was sorting out all the roster changes and rider images for all the teams for the fantasy cycling game so i could get it launched on time. all of which he wouldn't accept any payment for.

just sayin'

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Tony Farrelly [2868 posts] 3 years ago
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As Barry says no-one was compelled to give money and it's easier on the internet to ignore things you don't like or feel uncomfortable about with just the click of a mouse.

We've always been wary of running charity storiies or appeal not because the causes aren't valid they invariably are, but because we would find it hard to draw a line.

We made an exception for Keith for the reason mentioned above 'community' since his first post he's made a massive contribution to the sense of community on this site - in fact I think he has the highest post count of anyone on this website user or staff. He's made a contribution to making road.cc what it is so we were only too happy to make a small contibution by publicising his plight and helping so many people get a sense of satisfaction from helping him get back on a bike.

Totally agree with you about how good it would be if this level of generosity could be used to help groups of people, but very often it's the individual's story that galvanises us in to action and the bottom line here is that someone who needed help has been given it by people who were happy to give. I can't see why that's a problem.

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Lost faith in t... [116 posts] 3 years ago
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while i wouldnt wish his illness on anyone i cant help but think it would of been better to donate the money to a charity for parkinsons rather than a trike for one person...........no offense gkam.

but thats just my opinion which we are all entitled too. i dont spend much time on here as a lot of you which you will tell by my post count so maybe its something to do with that as i havent been following his situation like a lot of you have.

i think it would probably be best to delete this topic rather than everyones opinions causing problems on the forum. obviously a topic like this isnt good for any new potential members to read..... ?

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 3 years ago
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Lost Faith, As I said, everyone can have their personal opinion's. Which I am glad to read.

The opening post, while giving opinion's, also seemed like a personal attack. But others have come and given their opinion's and once again, support. It is really one big family of cyclists here. Which I believe new members will see. We are not a cleek (SP) group where we don't encourage others to get involved.

I will have one more say on Tim's opening post, he mentions that I have been getting things sent to me free.

Yes, but not asked for, nor does whoever sent them let me know who they were from.

One package had a pair of overshoes

The other addressed to the Trike, had a Co2 inflater with a refill and a Minoura super grip extension to fit my lights on.

All of this has been mentioned on twitter and will be in forth coming videos and blogs. I'm not hiding anything and am quite open to anyone and everyone asking questions. As said on my blog

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Tinternet_tim [118 posts] 3 years ago
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Well, looks like I am the bad guy!

I thought long and hard before posting this and even though there are so many negative comments against me I am still glad I did.

It looks like only certain aspects of my original post have been focused on, i.e. This person doesn’t deserve anything as he is a scrounger and unemployed!! But that is not what I have said!!

When I first read Keith’s appeal I was so close to donating him some money as I could totally relate to cycling being a realise and a way of escape….some days it is the only thing that gets me through. However I spent a couple minutes reading his tweets to make sure I was happy to part with my cash and in my humble opinion I didn’t feel he was being completely honest as he only focused on what he wanted us to know.

I still don’t feel Keith is being completely honest as taking a picture and posting it on twitter spelling ‘The Sweetest Thing’ in 50ps uses 119 coins and not 62!
Also, when we exchanged tweets a few months ago you said you had sky via a friends account and your not Ganny’s account.
Anyway, I am nit picking.

Keith, As I said in my original post, you are obviously an extremely caring and thoughtful person, this has been shown by you auctioning SOME of the items you have received for someone else who is less fortunate than others. I wish the auction all the success in the world and the money you raise changes someone life who is unable change it themselves.

I still stand by my comment (however unpopular they are) that you are much more fortunate than some and that there are thing you could do to help yourself before asking others. Please don’t cheery pick the items you have received and keep the ones you want and auction the others.

I wish you the very best in the future and hope you can get back to leading a relatively normal life where you aren’t reliant on others. Maybe once you are back to work you can help repay the generosity the cycle community has shown you by choosing a charity that is close to your heart and set up a direct debut each month until the price of the trike has been reached. Hopefully this will be as rewarding knowing your hard earned cash has gone to help others?

I guess there will be another tirade of abuse based on this post, however I would not have been true to myself if I didn’t express my views and beliefs, however I was hoping to do it in an balanced manner without causing emotion….I have obviously failed miserably on that one.

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cactuscat [284 posts] 3 years ago
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Tinternet_tim wrote:

taking a picture and posting it on twitter spelling ‘The Sweetest Thing’ in 50ps uses 119 coins and not 62!

 22

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 3 years ago
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I believe that the Sky question was regarding Sky Sports....Which I watch via Sky Go on a friends account. Where as I referenced to you opening post about Sky Tv.

You talk about this photo with the 50p's http://t.co/1a5hBg6l

If you look at it, I cannot upload it here for some reason that's still to be sorted.

But look closely, you will see its been pieced together, look at the shades of carpet....I had to do it in two pictures and put them together because I do not have that many 50p's

I am auctions ALL items I have received that are for the auction. I am not keeping anything that was asked for or donated towards the auction....

I am not cherry picking any items, but if you are hinting at things like the video camera, that was a gift to ME and not to the auction, so I could carry on filming my vlogs, as I only have a camera on loan at the moment.

Anything else you wish to address, by all means carry on, I don't think anyone should have a go at you for your thoughts and opinion's.

I think you may have got some of the backlash because your first post seemed like a personal attack on me.

Just to add, this is not the first time that Tim has asked these things, I'm quite happy to show you all this from twitter

https://twitter.com/GKam84/status/269762819791134720

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trikeman [309 posts] 3 years ago
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Gkam,
don't get wound up by him - he is STILL mentioning your honesty, you won't change his 'skewed' (or jealous) view. Envy, one of the sins.

As in his opening garbage, he is 0.01% (v 99.99%) - not worth worrying about.

Just forget him and his words.

Regards,

Trikeman.  3

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AWPeleton [3293 posts] 3 years ago
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Gkam is very lucky to have a community around him such as ourselves, thousands of others dont.

BUT

That does not mean we cant help him, far from it. I'm very lucky in that i have good job (you all know about that) and hopefully a good pension to follow but some are not as lucky, i see it every day at work.

Some care, the vast majority dont as its handed to them on a plate. Keith cares, and thats all that matters.

As for Tim, well everyone is entitled to their views and that should never change, regardless of whether they are right or wrong.

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Tinternet_tim [118 posts] 3 years ago
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Gkam,
Not that you or this forum are going to believe me, but I am actually a genuine person and I don't wish anyone any harm.
I just feel that when you want things whether its due to misfortune or the obstacles that life throws at you you have to make some sacrifices.

Maybe I am completely wrong on this one but I feel that you have material things that you could have sold which would have got you closer to your target before asking for help.

So, how is this for a deal. Although that the video camera was a gift to you, this is something that you could add to the auction and then save with your own money to buy yourself a cam?
If you add it to the auction I will donate £100 to benefit Cain as I am sure it will help towards changing his life when he is potentially unable to do anything about it.

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NeilG83 [293 posts] 3 years ago
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Tim, I can understand you questioning the ethics of Keith's appeal and Road.cc covering it. You are also correct that material possessions can not solve everything, but some of your comments go too far.
I'm not sure if it is right to ask strangers for money or for a website to cover an appeal like this which is for an idividual rather than a registered charity. However, I can see that Keith is well known on this site and is not going to con anyone. It is also clear that it would be extremely difficult for him to raise the money for the trike elsewhere.
As for some of your other comments; without knowing Keith personally how would you know what gadgets he owns or what he can afford and without being Keith himself you can't comment on whether he is mentally or physically capable of working.
I consider myself to be in a similar situation to Keith. I am 29 and have suffered from depression and anxiety for 12 years and further health problems recently. These problems forced me to drop out of university and I had to give up work after a couple of years. Cycling gives me an escape. I would love a top of the range road bike but make do with a hybrid which I have had for years. If I ever need a new bike I'm not sure if I could afford it, but I definitely wouldn't ask strangers for help on the internet.
I do think it is great that Keith had the courage to start his appeal and I hope he enjoys his trike and the community spirit on the site has been fantastic.
One last thing Tim you shouldn't tell an ill person what they should or shouldn't do or say that you understand because you have been through the same. No mental illness is the same as another only the person themselves can tell you how they feel.

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Leviathan [1928 posts] 3 years ago
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Knickers are well and truly twisted now.

I hope we get to see video evidence of the trike in action soon, Gkam shouting, 'out of the way, plebs!'

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Tinternet_tim [118 posts] 3 years ago
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Neil, I am so sorry that my post reads badly and goes to far. This certainly wasn't the intent.

As I have said before, my post wasn't intended to be abusive, I was hoping it would make people think about options they have and potential life changes or sacrifices I would have considered.
And finally I was hoping that maybe a donation of the value that has been seen on this occasion would go a long way to change several peoples lives and not just 1 person.

I sincerely hope that there my original post (however badly worded it was) has something in it that Keith can take from it.

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NeilG83 [293 posts] 3 years ago
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Tim, your intentions seem to be good and you make some good points, but without knowing Keith personally there are a lot of things in your original post that you shouldn't comment on.

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Dizzy [68 posts] 3 years ago
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Dear Tim
Thnak you for your generous offer of a £100 But i'd much rather Keith kept the camera
Cains mum

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paulfg42 [387 posts] 3 years ago
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Stop posting, Tim, because the hole you're digging keeps getting bigger every time you post. Whatever your intention, your posts read as petty and mean-minded.

I donated to Gkam's appeal because I wanted and could afford to. Guess what? I have also donated to quite a few other appeals, on those occasions to charitable groups.

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Barry Fry-up [187 posts] 3 years ago
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Tinternet_tim wrote:

If you add it to the auction I will donate £100 to benefit Cain as I am sure it will help towards changing his life when he is potentially unable to do anything about it.

anyone explain to me how this is materially different to donald trump's '$5m to charity if you show me your birth certificate' at obama?

if you've got £100 that you can give to Cain, and you want to give it to Cain, then give it to Cain. attaching some kind of demand to gkam that he has to give up something he's been given as a gift in order for someone to receive some money that they really, really neeed makes you sound a bit, well. best if I don't carry on that sentence.

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formereve [61 posts] 3 years ago
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Tinternet_tim wrote:

So, how is this for a deal. Although that the video camera was a gift to you, this is something that you could add to the auction and then save with your own money to buy yourself a cam?

If you add it to the auction I will donate £100 to benefit Cain as I am sure it will help towards changing his life when he is potentially unable to do anything about it.

Hi Tim

Why dont you donate the £100 to Cain's appeal ANYWAY without Keith doing anything with the cam. It might be now that YOU are thought to be blowing your own trumpet saying that you are willing to donate £100 IF Keith sells his cam.

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 3 years ago
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As Cain's mum has said above and to me in private aswell.

Keep the camera, It was offered to me after I tweeted asking if anyone had one and what they thought of it, not asking for one. Just for an honest review. I was then kindly offered one that someone had in their cupboard after they bought a Go Pro.

It was offered to me on the understanding I would be using it to make future videos about me and my trike, to keep others informed.

I will go further into Cain's situation when myself and others are ready to do so, but getting him a bike suited to his needs will be the outlet for anything thats been donated to the auction and the left over from my appeal.

So by starting the ball rolling helping me, others will also be helping him, I then hope to keep that ball rolling, where myself and Cain's mother can find another child who may need help and then any left over money would continue to help others.

Have been looking into setting up a charity just for this, but it seems alot easier to keep it personal and fund raising, rather than a charity situation.

As I said, more details will come.

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notfastenough [3674 posts] 3 years ago
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So Tim, now that Keith's appeal is out there, does that mean he's not entitled to keep personal gifts? What's next, auction any Christmas gifts from his granny as well?

As for the ultimatum with the cam, well let's put it this way: I disagreed with your original post, but could see what you were trying to say, so I posted a considered and detailed answer, but now? Now I just think you're a selfish, jealous arsehole who's suddenly revealed a manipulative train of thought.

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