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Rob Kall's Vision: A Transcript of His Interview With Envision This!

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R: It's, it's, it's a simple concept really but it's one that i think so many activists forget that they can't do the change for the people that are advocating for, they have to awaken those people and teach them how to help themselves. And that ,they can do.

H2: hmm. Mhmm. I think it's Freire that said that " the word is the world. " And when  when you open the word up to people when they begin to realize that they have something to say, they almost automatically become literate and become  in-communication with all thought everywhere.

R: It's a way to give people power

H2: mhmm

H1: mhmm

R: It's a way to let people discover their power and that's huge.

H1: Well yeah and I think that's, that's the foundation I, I mean I see it in your work and also hopefully it comes through in mine, is that the power is going to have to come from each, each one of us within our communities and that sort of thing.

R: Yeah I, I have to tell ya, Burl, I really love the writing that you do and the work that you do.

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H1: Thank you

R: It's, it's really good stuff.  You know, can I talk a little about OpEdNews?

H1: Yes

H2: Certainly! Please do.

R: I started Opednews as my personal blog and I started inviting people to write for it and then , after about two year,s I got - started getting a lot of people to write for it and it got to the point where I couldn't upload by FTP, and create the files and the articles for everybody each day so I, I worked with a programmer and designed a content management system to do it so that people could submit their content directly. And I didn't know about Word Press, or Blogger, so I built my own and I've been working on that and continuing to build my own content management system since two thousand five and then now it has over one hundred sixty five thousand articles on it and - what I learned as I was going along -- was this bottom up idea.  Opednews - what I found was, the more I got the writers and the editors involved, I, I started recruiting editors, we have,at any one time we have between thirty five and fifty volunteer editors usually, the more I got them involved, the more I gave them the voice and the control with decision making the better it got the more successful it got. And I really believe Opednews is kind of unique, the -- it - we give people the place where they can have a voice. If you can write coherently and intelligently, you're going to get published in Opednews unless you're talking about hate or just right wing stuff. I mean, we're a left wing progressive site, so we're not going to publish you if you're advocating that anybody can have a gun at any time for example or that- creationism is, should be treated with equal footing with scientific ideas about evolution. But ye- we've published people from all over the world. Last month we reached people in two hundred and eleven countries (and territories)

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H1: Wow

H2: Wow

R: Last month we had over two hundred thousand unique visitors and my belief is that there is a real need for a place where people can find - get a voice. And that's what Opednews attempts to do, in a way, with integrity, so that it can be trusted, too. We had to struggle with our policies related to conspiracy theories for example.

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Burl is an avid writer and publishes to OpEd News. He is author of "Sophia's Web: A Passionate Call to Heal Our Wounded Nature." As of this writing, Burl is planning to self-publish the book. Alongside his wife, Burl co-hosts an on line radio (more...)

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