It’s in there. The A.A. Group… Where It All Begins
Designed for easy reference, the pamphlet covers four main areas:
- What an A.A. group is.
- How a group functions.
- Group relations with others in the community.
- How the group fits into the structure of A.A. as a whole.
Understanding Anonymity at the A.A. Group Level
We may use last names within our group. At the same time, we respect the right of other members to maintain their own anonymity however they wish, and as closely as they wish. Some groups keep a listof names and telephone numbers volunteered bytheir members, and may provide phone lists—butfor the eyes of the group members only.
We repeat no one’s personal sharing made in A.A. meetings. The word“anonymous” in our name is a promise of privacy. Besides, the only story of
recovery we can truly share is our own.
In our personal relationships with nonalcoholics—and with those we think might have a problemwith alcohol—we may feel free to say that we arerecovering alcoholics (without divulging the namesof other A.A. members), although discretion is recommended.Here our openness may help to carrythe message.
We refrain from videotaping that special A.A. talk or meeting which might receive exposure at the public level. And, as the 1980 General Service Conference Conference recommended, it is wiser that talks by A.A. members be given in person, in view of the temptation when videotaping to place personalities before principles and thus encourage the development of a “star” system in Alcoholics Anonymous.
For more information about this important Tradition, see the A.A. pamphlet “Understanding Anonymity.”