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Inside Web Lab
May 10, 2000
This month's really weird search engine term
that popped up in our site stats:
"calories in coffee" - go on, try and find it!
Is it Spring yet?
Community of Practice
Lab Workers Wanted
IS IT SPRING YET?
OK, maybe it’s almost summer, but here in NYC we’ve
been thankful for a couple of balmy days at last. We hope
those of you outside of the city are beginning to thaw as
It was an intense winter (and what should have been spring)
for Web Lab, with lots of strategic planning, internal
evaluations, and meetings, meetings, meetings. But now
we’re ready to bound ahead with even bigger, better ideas
than we’ve boasted about in the past.
Our plans for the next few quarters include a focus on moving
the Small Group Dialogue software into wider
distribution in the marketplace and among non profit
organizations. We’re also gearing up for a full-on broad
band initiative, and we’ll continue to support the
Community of Practice. This all translates into something
like a growth spurt, so be sure to check out our help
wanted’s at the end of this message.
COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE
In past newsletters, we’ve mentioned a project that’s been
in the works for some time now at Web Lab. It’s an
initiative that would connect those who are interested in
innovation on the Web and offer them space to experiment,
collaborate, and expound on ideas and approaches. We call
it a Community of Practice. Practice, as in try and try
again. Practice, as in makes perfect. Practice, as in what you
We’re ready to move ahead with the Community of
Practice, but we need your feedback. Visit us online to read
about the project, and be sure to click on “your input” to
make your voice heard. After all, it’s everybody’s Web.
We’re just camped out on it.
We’d like to welcome two new members to the Web Lab
Advisory Board. We’re lucky to have on our side Cathy
Clark, Managing Director of the newly-created Flatiron
Foundation and Future Fund and David Crocker, Senior
Vice President at Salomon Smith Barney.
Cathy’s a familiar face in the foundation world. She was a
Vice President at the Markle Foundation, where among
other projects, she created Web White and Blue, a non
profit and industry partnership addressing the ’98 elections,
and helped wangle support for the evaluation of our Small
Group Dialogue technique.
David manages socially screened investments at Salomon
Smith Barney and has a long history as an activist. In the
1970’s he co-founded the Haymarket People’s Fund, one of
the very first social change foundations run by a board of
donors and activists, the Funding Exchange, and the Film
Fund. He currently sits on the board of several
environmental organizations and is active in the Social
At a recent roundtable hosted by the Surdna Foundation on
the topic of “Using the Web to move from Dialogue to
Action in Race Relations”, Web Lab’s Executive Producer,
Marc Weiss, and Supervising Producer, Barry Joseph
presented findings from experiments with our Small Group
Dialogue technique. Learn more about it at:
Marc also spoke at Screaming Media’s “MalCONTENT”
conference last week in New York. Marc joined Dan
Rather, Michael Wolf and others to debate “What it takes to
teach an old dog (old media) cyber tricks.” Conference info:
Web Lab Associate Producer Laura Kertz contributed an
article on parody political sites last month to “Freedom
Dreams”, a feature issue of M/C Reviews, a journal of
events in culture and the media. Read it online at:
And if you live in the tri-state area, you may have spotted all
of our gleaming mugs on a recent NY1 news cast. The
piece isn’t online yet, but in all our humility, we’re sure to
let you know when it is.
LAB WORKERS WANTED
Director of Dialogues - Are you an experienced
New Media producer inspired by the notion of using your
skills to make a difference in people's lives? We are looking
for an enthusiastic, multitasking, team player to become our
Director of Dialogues. We're looking for someone who
identifies with Web Lab's mission and who has a passion
and commitment to the World Wide Web as a social
medium, someone who brings not just experience, but a
whole lot of energy as well. Get the low-down:
Director of Enterprise - Got business smarts plus
a sense of indebtedness to the Web? Want to see innovation
rewarded in the marketplace? Web Lab is looking for a
Director of Enterprise who will identify and develop
revenue generating opportunities for Web Lab, bringing
Web Lab innovations into the marketplace. (Don’t worry.
We’re not abandoning our .org roots, just exploring new
models of self-sustainability.) If you’d like to learn more:
We’re so moved (and only a little concerned) that David
Van Taylor, producer/director of the POV hits "Dream
Deceivers" and "A Perfect Candidate," counts this limerick
among his finest accomplishments.
There once was a group named Web Lab
With many ideas oh so fab.
Their approach was bodacious
And also loquacious,
So they ended up known as “We Blab”.
If you haven’t been by our site lately, please drop by and
check out our face-lift. Our hip and talented intern Ellen
Scott, who is pursuing an MFA in design at Pratt, gave us
a structural overhaul and a design reboot that has made all
the difference. Thanks, Ellen!
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