Focus On… War (March 16-22)

First, let me say that this is kj’s brainchild.  She has been talking about doing week-long collaborative projects on our blog – to focus on key issues and actions we can all take part in.

Buhdy, what about an action a week?  simple stuff… NENA, Iraq Moratorium, we’ll need two more…. a big pot with a big label on it for anyone to toss something in on their way through, or for others to stop and and form a circle around, or for others to create art or essays or, you know, just walk by and say, “Yeah, gotta do that!” and then promptly forget because their life sucks that very moment, but maybe they’ll remember next week or next month. ~ kj

I enthusiastically support the idea/experiment and have been thinking about ways to implement it within the framework of Soapblox … at least to start with.  Tonight I’m just here to throw out some ideas to start the organization efforts and facilitate whatever needs to happen behind the scenes on the blog.      

Next week marks the 5th anniversary of the Iraq War and there is also an Iraq Moratorium Day on the 21st so this topic is a no-brainer to kickoff the project.  Instead of just focusing on Iraq I think we should broaden this to include other wars, current or historical, and all aspects of war.  

I suck at making up names, so the first thing we need to do is pick a title for the weekly topics.   For now I’ll use “Focus On…”

Anyone can write an Essay on the topic.  All essays should use the tag “Focus on War”.  A new blox called “Focus On…” will be displayed prominently on the right side.  Similar to the Action Alert blox, I will create a feed to display the last 6-10 (?) essays with the “Focus on __”  tag.  This will keep the relevant posts linked on the front page longer.  

Banner or Badge – To be displayed below our DD banner – or in the “Focus On” blox? The image will link to the “Focus On ___ ” tag page.  (art submissions always welcome)    

Schedule – We should try to have a featured daily post at say 9 PM Eastern (think about inviting guest bloggers from other sites).  So for next week we need 7 volunteers…  We have a ton of war experts here so there should be no problem getting 7 essays lined up. If anyone is interested, speak up below to claim a night (Sunday Mar 16 through Sat Mar 22). If we fill up the 9 PM slots we could also have a featured post at Noon.

Tomorrow we can put up another essay to announce the weeklong event and call for featured submissions.    

Ad – This will have links for donations, action items, etc, like the NOLA ad that was running recently (someone would need to be in charge of running down the charities and organizations to link to and provide a graphic if possible).

Front Page Poll – Not sure what we would do with it but it is something I think we should be making more use of in general.  

There will be a central post (click for a crude mockup) to briefly introduce the topic and post the schedule.  Soapblox has a “Subject Promote” feature  that will make this a “sticky” post in the subject list.  In other words, it will keep this essay at the top of the tag page so it will be the first thing people see if they come to the Focus On War tagged essay list.  

This central post could link to roundup of sub-essays like:  

Blog Roll / Resources – the best blogs and other sites to get info on the topic

Artwork  – images, poetry, etc.  (original, fair use, creative commons or public domain preferred. Or if expressly permitted by author.)

YouTubes – On topic. Or songs that evoke the feeling of the topic

Action Items – Donate, Volunteer, LTEs, Contact Congress, Support a candidate, etc.


OK! I’m out of time and need to post this now.  

What do you all think?  More ideas please!


Skip to comment form

  1. Who wants to Halp?


    • OPOL on March 12, 2008 at 1:07 pm

    all about the National Day of Action on the 19th.

    • kj on March 12, 2008 at 3:05 pm

    awesome, OTB!  🙂  🙂  🙂

    i don’t understand all the linky things, but i love the idea of topics to focus writing, art, and action around.  there are so many varied perspectives on any given subject, just knowing there is a loose structure in place re: ‘where to go’ and/or ‘what to write about’ will really help people like me, who suffer from issue overload.  

    also, there is room for pieces on literature that deal with the subject, a book review, poems, numbers to call Congress, et.c et.c etc.

    “Focus on…” sounds perfect to me!   cool beans, OTB! 🙂  

    • kj on March 12, 2008 at 3:15 pm

    think of the exposure the peace marches will get here!  not that they wouldn’t get exposure anyway… but… well.  🙂

    knucklehead posted an amazing picture on Edger’s “I’d Just As Soon Be A Rattlesnake” essay… it’s down at the very end of the comments.  Basically, out of something negative, he created a work of beauty… to honor a teacher.

    even in the priviledged US of A, we face so many negatives. transforming those negatives into positives is the work of alchemy and it is absolutely something we can all do, in our own ways.  as NPK says, as a chosen response, not reaction, to the *&^%$* that fills our airwaves and lives.  

Comments have been disabled.