Tuesday, July 25, 2006

The big day is looming

This Saturday at 14:00 GMT, we start our marathon blog against torture (well, not exactly 1400, since our first post will be around about 1430). It's my mum's birthday on the Sunday, and I'm thinking of making a donation to the cause in her name as a present :)

I have tried (twice) to contact Amnesty USA to ask them if it would be possible to make available someone to interview by e-mail during the Blogathon, but they have so far failed to reply. It's a pity and if you think you, armed with polite eloquence instead of my ogrish grunts, can do better, please try asking them yourself. It would make a great post.

For those of you who are staying up into the early hours, BlogExplosion are running a live radio show throughout the 'Thon, which might help you stay the course - if nothing else, drooping eyelids will be snapped wide open by a loud burst of heavy metal (and by the resulting crowd of angry neighbours in night-gowns knocking at your door). If you feel like listening, pop over to their homepage on the day and click on the link.

Alternatively, you could go listen to Blogathon Radio. It's being run by participants of the Blogathon, and should be a right laff. In fact, if I am not mistaken there may still be time for you to offer to contribute, by hosting the show for an hour or two, if that's your kind of thing. On the page linked to above, you'll also find details of how to send a small file of you bigging up our cause and directing people this way. This will then be aired on the Blogathon Radio during the event. I'm going to do one, and I'll try very hard not to make it totally lame.

As we all know, pre-writing of posts is not allowed. Preparing for posts, on the other hand, most definitely is. This has left me wondering whether or not it would be wise to start talking now about what each of us is thinking of writing about, to ensure we don't have double-posts or overlaps, or that sort of thing.

On the day itself, communication between us will happen through comments. We'll have to sort out who posts next, and all that sort of thing. When you arrive, let us know via a comment so we can say hi, and place you in the queue.

Also, don't forget that it is remains possible to sponsor us throughout the Blogathon, and for a full two days afterwards.

Lastly, a big part of the Blogathon is the community spirit. If you get a chance to take a break from frantically typing up your masterpiece before the next deadline, try looking around other participating blogs and commenting. It'll add to the spirit, and it will also lead to more people coming to our site (and hence, hopefully, more pledges).

I wasn't sure it would be useful to start discussing the order of posts now, since many people don't know when exactly they'll be able to make it and for how long they'll be able to stay, and in any event, we can decide it on the day through comments.

Well, that's all I can think of for now. Good luck, and see you all on the day!


P.S. We are now up to an amazing $932 in pledges, thanks to a very generous donation from bfahmed. Thanks!


Blogger Dr. Strangelove said...

Heathlander, the Blogathon 2006 site says 8 pledges for $855. I am about to update my site, is your $932 a typo or is it the actual amount? Let me know.

I will keep it at $855 on my site until I hear from you.

7:04 PM  
Blogger The Heathlander said...

Erp, my mistake. I counted an 'unverified' pledge - we have recieved $932 in pledges, but one has yet to be verified, so I'll bring it back down to $855 until it is.

5:53 AM  
Blogger Dr. Strangelove said...

I think I know the pledger, judging by the username. I'll ask him to verify the email. I figured that was what was going on. :)

7:52 AM  
Blogger elendil said...

Hehe. Amnesty International's "web coordinator" is notorious for not replying to his email. Don't worry about it. I've emailed him and he's at least acknowledged our existence. I imagine he's a bit overworked.

4:16 PM  
Blogger Geshtinanna said...

What is the code to get the blogroll going? I saw it somewhere the other day but didn't have time, and now I can't find it.

4:38 PM  
Blogger elendil said...

Geshtinanna, you can find it here.

I might put a permanent link to it up the top with the sign up form this evening.

9:51 PM  
Blogger The Heathlander said...

They only have one web coordinator?? OK then, I'll let him off - he must have a busy job!

5:15 AM  
Blogger El Mas Chingón said...

Sorry I've been MIA lately. I've been working on preparing a manuscript to send off to an agent and a publishing house.

For me, this starts at 6am my local time. Is there a schedule yet as to when we'll make our posts so I can start preparing? Thanks.

5:29 PM  
Blogger The Heathlander said...

Hi Robbie,

No, at the moment there is no schedule. I don't think many people know exactly when they will be able to turn up, and for how long.

When you arrive, just let us know via a comment, and we'll sort it out as we go.

After someone has posted, we'll decide in the comments after it who will post the next one, and so on.

The only thing is the first post. Does that have to be at 14:00 on the dot (or 6am your time), or does it start half an hour in, so at 1430 (or 0630 for you)?

If it was to start on the dot at 1400, that would require 'pre-writing' a post, and also would result in 49, as opposed to the required 48, posts.

So what shall we do? I was thinking that we should do the first post at 1400, just saying 'Let's go' - basically just a welcome post. We can then use that to comment on to decide who will do the first proper post at half past.


6:39 AM  
Blogger Marcella Chester said...

I should be able to join in on the blogging within the first hour and then will be in and out through the day.

7:18 AM  
Blogger El Mas Chingón said...

I think the first post has to be made by :30 after the hour. I'm not sure if I can be up at 6am my local time but I'm pretty much a lock for the late hours.

10:20 AM  
Blogger Per said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5:27 PM  
Blogger Per said...

I don't know exactly when I show up - but I plan to write about our personal readiness - or growing readiness - to accept torture as a last resort. :)

5:29 PM  
Blogger Ingrid said...

I was going to post at least one on the Stanley Milgram and the Stanford Prison experiment. I also wanted to do one on Amnesty (as the recipient of the blogathon proceeds) and one on the Alberto J. Mora torture memo,article by Jane Mayer. I wrote on the latter one but I would do it differently for tomorrow. The fourth one, I don't know yet.. anyhow..did my research but nothing written!
See you guys tomorrow

10:04 PM  
Blogger The Heathlander said...

Ingrid and per - sounds great. Look forward to reading them.

I'm planning to do one post about US sponsorship of torture in regimes around the world, one psychological look at how people can do such barbaric things to each other and one reply to Alan Dershowitz. I'm still thinking about the other one.

1:34 AM  
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12:37 AM  

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