- LGBT presence at this summer's immigration right rallies
- The passing of ball-room legend Willi Ninja earlier this month
- and, perhaps most famously (if briefly so), protests against the LIFEbeat Foundation's decision to hire rabidly-homophobic dance-hall reggae singers for an AIDS service benefit concert
I have had some lingering questions about these occurrences. In some of these cases, and particularly the LIFEbeat protest, there was some limited strategic planning before the protest went 'on-line' but most of the bloggers who joined the effort found out about it after it was launched, possibly from some of those involved from the outset who knew which other bloggers to contact (and later from people who read different posts by these bloggers and decided to join).
It's fascinating to watch a certain issue catch fire and spread from a disorganized entity into a focused action, sometimes without participants even knowing each other. But there was also a small number of those involved in the LIFEbeat protest that had direct access to mainstream media and were able to channel some of the responses once they picked up on it. Of course, other things also come into play, including whether it was a slow news day, if the story had a 'sexy' angle, if it had legs, etc.
Now, most bloggers who responded to the LIFEbeat protest were African-American though off-line there were some gay Jamaican leaders and organizations that were involved. If I remember correctly, Emanuel Xavier and yours truly were the Latino representation blog-wise. And I have often wondered since then if a similar 'blogger activation campaign' on an issue related to LGBT Latinos could take place (my gut feeling is that it might take a couple of years for LGBT Latinos to catch up to blogger-fever, particularly those who are interested in politics and advocacy).
'tis why this particular story caught my eye last week and why it seems to be still reverberating among blogger circles. Which brings to mind this Newsweek article from back in March.
Which then brings us to Bloggasm and an informal poll conducted by media critic Simon Owens. He asked 1,000 bloggers the following questions:
The results? At least when it comes to Latino bloggers, mostly dismal (even if it's not a scientific survey). But it does reflect some of my own perceptions since I started blogging more than a year ago.
1. What niche does your blog fall into (Examples: Political, gadget, movie, etc…If more than one, please list)?
2. What are the genders of all the bloggers who write for your site?
3. What are the races for all the bloggers who write for your site (if there are any that you’re not sure about, just indicate that you don’t know)?
4. What do you think of the diversity of the blogosphere, both in your niche and as a whole?
In a couple of days, if not sooner, I'll be announcing a nifty international effort to support gay rights in a Caribbean island - but it was done in old-skool fashion (through the internet) rather than the blogospehere.
Let's hope that this focus on diversity in the blogosphere can change some of these dynamics.
(Thanks to Streetforce1 at GreasyGuide for guiding us to the Bloggasm entry)
[Additional Reading: The Republic of T. - Blogs, Diversity & Moving Forward: A Proposal]