from the NEW MEXICO NEWS CONNECTION - A statewide news service for New Mexico
While the mainstream press is jockeying for face time with Democratic heavy-hitters in the Pepsi Center, a few blocks away a tent full of 500 bloggers and non-profits are creating their own convention with a focus on sustainability, new media and voter participation. Aaron Nelson with the Alliance for Sustainable Colorado, one of the Tent's sponsors, says backers like Google, YouTube, and co-sponsor group ProgressNowAction want to promote voter engagement by catering to people working within the new media landscape, "Some of the largest political blogs have over 8 million unique visitors every single month. We're in an on-demand world these days. People like to go online and point and click. So, the quote, unquote, New Media is becoming more and more used as the internet is becoming more and more used."
The 8,000 square foot Big Tent hosts hundreds of bloggers and dozens of panel discussions throughout the course of the convention. Under the "big" lights, voting rights, climate change, and healthcare are hot topics. Noted website, Daily Kos, is a co-sponsor. Executive editor Susan Gardner says blogs are an important part of the convention coverage, "The blogs offer a way for us to no longer be consumers, but to be creators of our Democracy, as well."
And besides "new media," the Big Tent has attracted its share of celebrities. Hollywood actress Daryl Hannah will be video blogging from the site. According to Hannah, "It's a great way to share information, and I think when people have information they make wise decisions."
An award-winning website is hosting a national dialog every day of the Convention, you can log onto "Votelink.com" to answer key questions. If respondents had been in charge of policy-making this week, the $12 billion dollars a month the U-S now directs toward war efforts abroad would be going instead ... to pay down the national debt. To join in, log on to http://Votelink.com .