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Sep 7, 2006
In the seven months since we launched the Care2 News Network (C2NN), I've been amazed at the power of this service - and my admiration is growing by the day.  Members from all over the world are submitting stories and voting to determine which make the front page.  A couple of recent events have made me even more convinced of its potential.

1) Recently I've noticed I'm tiring of reading the NY Times and/or watching the morning news, as I've already seen almost all the stories already on C2NN.  It seems members typically submit similar stories between a day to three days before they appear in the NY Times or make the morning news on TV.

Then, last Sunday night, I learned of "Crocodile Hunter" Steve Irwin's death within minutes of it hitting the Australian news sites because one of our Australian members posted the story on C2NN. I was so shocked to read the headline I actually visited CNN.com and turned on CNN TV to see if it was true - but the story hadn't even hit CNN yet.  That's pretty incredible for such a "hot story" that nearly every news organization wanted to be the first to announce.

It took about 5 hours for the story to make it to the Care2 News Network front page, as it occurred late at night US time and stories only hit the C2NN front page after receiving enough votes... but anyone reviewing the C2NN "Newly Submitted" story area would have seen it before then.  I've never thought of C2NN being a "headline news" type service - I've thought of it more as a place to find and discuss "particularly interesting progressive news" that is complementary, not competitive, to the headline news, but with this example I can see how even headline news organizations might want to rethink their models.

The other fascinating thing to watch with this story was the outpouring of emotions by Care2 members who posted comments to the story.  You can't do that while reading the paper or watching TV, yet it gave me a much deeper appreciation for how Steve Irwin touched the world.

I have to say, I was really sad when I learned of his death, despite my belief that I'm pretty jaded these days. My kids loved watching his video with the Wiggles, and there was something about his energy, enthusiasm and love for wildlife that was exceptional... and I didn't even realize I felt that way until I heard he was gone.  But it was when I saw the comments coming in on the C2NN post that I realized how many others felt that way too - and that turned the story from something very sad, into something very powerful - even inspirational - to see how this man inspired so many and did so much for wildlife.

2) The other reason I'm more excited about C2NN than ever is that I've been reading the updated The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman.  The author talks quite a bit about why some societies adjust better to a flattening world than others, and how the poorest societies can be lifted up.   Part of the answer is that societies need a stable political and economic environment to facilitate transactions - and transparency and accountability at a local level is key to establishing the stability needed to build trust.  Obviously, giving individuals the tools and resources they need to hold their local officials accountable is a big part of what Care2 is all about... but now I'm seeing C2NN has far more potential to support this than even I had realized.

Just more evidence that when you give people the tools they need to make a difference, amazing things will happen.
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Posted: Sep 7, 2006 9:26am

 

 
 
Content and comments expressed here are the opinions of Care2 users and not necessarily that of Care2.com or its affiliates.

Author

Randy Paynter
, 1
Hillsborough, CA, USA
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gotcha
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\\n\\r\\nHello my C2 Family, \\r\\nFirst let me say Thank You to those of you who have so sweetly fwd my posts. You are SO AWESOME!! I will never forget your help. Anytime I can repay the favour, please tell me. Second, my Submit button has disappeared lea...
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Feb
13
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New Petition! Speak out against Time-Warner Merger with Comcast! Let your opinion be know before your bill goes up and your programming choices dwindle.\\r\\n\\r\\nUrge DOJ and FCC to Not Allow Merger of Time-Warner and Comcast\\r\\nhttp://www.t hepetitionsi...
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11
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\r\nHow to spread the news\r\n02/11/14\r\n\r\nT his is really awfull, i did write many hosst announcements, but they dissapeared, luckely
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by Dave C.
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