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Huckleberries Online

High Noon: Blogfest 2012

Blogfest 2012 has come & gone — and I have a renewed since of energy and purpose in doing what I do here. Those who criticize HucksOnline for being too this or that politically totally miss what this blog is all about. (Then, I'd guess that they intentionally do so.) This blog brings people of various political, religious, philosophical stripes together for a fairly civil conversation about local, state & national issues, as well as gives them a sense of camaraderie. Saturday's Blogfest at Steve Widmyer's Fort Ground Grill illustrates the point. I joked to someone that the group reminded me of the county's old Republican Central Committee, before it went off the Far Right side of the rails. Spencer, Reagan Repubs, Gary Ingraham, Kerri Thoreson, Ben Wolfinger, Dan Gookin, Norther and others were there kibitzing congenially with HBO bloggers, commenters, and even one blurker. Sgt. Christie Wood, former Councilman Al Hassell, Councilman Mike Kennedy, former Clerk Dan English, and dozens of pseudonyms you see all the time here were also in attendance. All having fun. Exchanging ideas. Joking with one another. My goal from the start was to bring people together to find consensus. We agree on way more things than we disagree on. I'm as happy as I've ever been in where the blog is now in terms of civility. The annual blogfests reinforce that civility, bringing people who sometimes fight behind pseudonyms here to a comfortable venue to talk with one another face to face. I've often thought a good motto for HucksOnline would be something like: “Where everyone knows your pseudonym.” But that's not exactly true. And it steals too much from “Cheers.” Still the sentiment stands. It's a place of equals, despite lot in life, where everyone gets a say as long as s/he keeps things between the lines. Dunno how much longer I'll be doing this. But I still enjoy doing this as I begin my 9th year. Very much — DFO

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About this blog

D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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