The role of the Gatnet Forum is to provide a shared place in which we can post, keep track of, and share comments and ideas on important contributions to the gender/transport debate and policy shaping efforts of all involved. The Forum is essentially a convenient place to post and access outstanding contributions, which otherwise often seem to get lost in the shuffle. The basic structure is described below.
An Open Collaborative Forum: The Forum is intended to add a much needed new dimension to our group work toolset under the Gatnet open collaborative project, by providing a broader medium for posting ideas, articles, essays and proposals which stretches beyond our usual email messages. The Forum is indexed and regularly scrutinized by the Google search engine and others, thus ensuring a broader reach of all that appears there.
Want to post a piece or commentary to the Forum? Terrific. That's what this is all about? But kindly consult these Guidelines before your first posting. And until you are conversant with the posting routines here (see below) we suggest you send it to any of our Contributors/Editors via email and we can post as per your instructions. If we have any questions, we will get in touch first to iron it out.
Article length: This argues in our view for an approach which keeps the actual Forum posting relatively compact – say enough for a good read in 5/10 minute max. -- say 3000 words absolute max, while 500 or even less may well do the trick. Reader wants more, to go on to the full article or report? All s/he has to do is click to that link to get the full piece.
Link Option: Note that at the top of the entry form is place for both the item title and a link. This is a potentially powerful sharing tool for us. The idea behind the latter is that the reader can be taken, for example, either to the original source of the posted piece, or if it is a summary to something that is much longer, this will take them to the full document. (PDF is no problem).
Internal organization: Opening page displays upper right (a) ten most recent entries. Then (b) as you go to any given entry, the column reforms to display the next ten. You can also call up all entries for any given month by clicking the indicated month link, and for the Archives as a whole.
The Forum reports back to the Gatnet Dgroups Listserv. As entries are made here, the full Dgroups list is immediately informed of the new addition.
How to receive: All you have to do is pop your mail address into the indicated box at the top right of the blog, and you will start to receive items as they come in. (You can also easily get off the list later if you chose to do so.)
Common knowledge base: It is our hope that entries here will be made by people who have had a chance to develop a more or less common, or at least a well researched base of information and insight on gender issues in transportation. (Please note; this is not the same thing as wishing to discourage debate and difference of views, which we not only expect but welcome. The hallmark here is variety, open expression, and creative dissonance.)
Have a comment? These can be easily made on each item and are enthusiastically invited. All you have to do is click the Comment link at the top of the item, and file your comment. If you do not have a blog, it is easiest to send as "other"; but in that case we would ask you to identify yourself, including your email for eventual later exchanges.
Some entry hints:
1. Model: Use this entry as your model so that we have a common format (Font=Arial 10, single spaced, left justified. (Look and feel is important)
2. Off line edit: The on-line Blogger toolset is a little fussy for editing. You may find it handier to work out your text and formatting problems off line first.
3. Each time you make an entry, please make sure that you identify yourself by full name as a Member/Contributor and as follows as a courtesy to the reader: A good signature block would show:
· Your full name
· Organization (if any)
· City, Country
· Email, Tel #, Skype address if any (optional and if you chose to invite private communications)
7. Having Trouble? If you run into trouble with your early entries, get in touch with a Contributor/Editor and we can take care of it together. The learning curve is not bad.
- Information on free IP telephone. See http://www.Skype.com To get in touch directly once you have Skype installed, click here: callto://ericbritton/
- Group meetings via Skype: Need to be carefully prepared if they are to work properly.
- Questions? If any, we invite you to get in touch by any of the means indicated here.
That should about do it to get us going. If you need more, you know how to get in touch. (And if there is anything there that you don’t like or feel is wrong, please let us know and we can talk about and certainly then change)