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Posted by Wayne on May 07, 2002 at 11:21:26:

In Reply to: PADI vs Diverlink posted by tleemay on May 06, 2002 at 11:48:26:

I addressed a comment about whether PADI is a leader in the industry. I said that I think that PADI is the leader -- like it or not.

And PADI's leadership is the issue. Where are they leading the industry? PADI obviously sees where it is going and is progressing toward its goals. The goals clearly are to expand the base of divers, expand the range of products available to the ever expanding base of divers, and to keep the industry viable. All good goals.
The trouble is that many of us have a different set of goals, and therefore dislike PADI's successful efforts aimed at achieving its goals.
We need to face it. We local boys and girls are the minority, with minority interests. And within our loosely formed ranks are other minorities such as tech divers and the DIR people. Hunters and photographers have their own set of needs and hot buttons. We all see each other as different and we distrust each other.
Then comes PADI. A single common target against which we can almost all unite. No matter what our personal proclivities are, there is something in PADI's offerings that runs counter to our way of life. So PADI Bashing was born.
As much as we all seem to like ragging on PADI, remember that "they" certify more divers, cause more gear to be sold, fill more spaces on dive boats, get more potential divers through their outreach programs, etc. We all benefit from their work through this increased volume and market stability.
Because there are so many PADI instructors, a large percentage of the "bad" ones are going to be PADI. But it is still a small number. And PADI actively tries to weed out the problem ones and take corrective actions. I have seen it in action, and it works. If you know of a PADI instructor who is violating standards, turn him/her in. It will be fixed.
It is up to the experienced in the industry to watch over our sport. Sitting around whining on a BBS about having seen this or that being done in training is useless, unless you just want to hear your own typing. If you do not know the standards, learn them. Ask a PADI instructor to look it up in his/her manual.
And finally, if you think open water training is insufficient for you or a friend, take more training. Take it from more than one source. Learn everything you can, but do not come back later as an experienced diver and remark that your entry level class did not teach you everything you now know after hundreds of dives and diligent self study.
It is the same as if I went back to my high school (South High In Torrance -- odd initials) and complained that they left me in need of much further training for my present job in engineering and sales management. After all, I had to attend an expensive university and take more math and science and English and history and so on. Then it took years of experience to qualify me for work I do. So, should I burn my high school diploma? No. Should I burn my old open water card (Ok so it is not PADI, but you get the point)? Of course not.
Sorry to rant so long, but I needed to get this said before I got too angry.


P.S. I remember how it was in the 70's when I started diving and I do not want to go back.

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