People differ on their interest and even tolerance for various topics on their FPF neighborhood/town forum. One person posted recently complaining about too much conversation about the proposed roundabout road project in Cambridge, Vermont. Here’s a response posted today by a neighbor, Jim…
A comment was made recently suggesting that Front Porch Forum be renamed the “Cambridge “roundabout” forum” because of the volume of responses the topic elicited. I vehemently disagree! I feel that this is EXACTLY why FPF was created. Stimulating and fostering dialogue among LOCAL residents should be applauded!!!
FPF is an just a modern, electronic version of the conversations that used to take place in the feedstores, general stores, post offices, etc. that were the gathering places for inhabitants of the towns and villages of “old” Vermont. To simply dismiss these important interactions, whether electronic or face-to-face, is missing a major part of what makes Vermont so unique and such a great place to live in! Think of FPF as the conversations that take place before, during and after Town Meeting. It provides those of us that are not fortunate enough to have jobs that allow us to attend Town Meeting and similar venues make our thoughts, ideas and concerns known. How can this be a bad thing?
Let’s face it, the proposed roundabout will impact virtually all of us living in our town, now and well into the foreseeable future. It’s probably the biggest point of discussion to hit here since the idea to re-establish a Cambridge High School several years back. Why would we want to stifle it? It’s a sign of a healthy, vibrant community!!! What a great way for our governmental representatives to help to better understand what’s on our minds.
Leaving all of the decisions to our elected officials because they are “in the know” is a recipe for disaster! Can you say “Iraq”?
So let’s continue to grow and contribute to FPF. Consider it as an opportunity!
Thanks to e-Vermont for bringing FPF to Cambridge!
From eMarketer today…
The latest death knell for email was sounded by data in comScore’s “2010 U.S. Digital Year in Review” report, which noted a decline in time spent with web-based email among all US internet users under 55. Users ages 12 to 17, who have been most likely to drop email in favor of other online communications like social networking, had the steepest decline in usage, down 59%.
But web-based email checked at a desktop computer is only one slice of all email communications, and email represents an overwhelmingly important communications channel.
According to research from customer relationship marketing agency Merkle, 87% of internet users checked personal email daily in 2010, a number that has changed little since 2007. Among those with a separate email account for commercial email, 60% checked daily, down just 1 percentage point since 2008.
Further, social media usage is hardly taking away from email. Rather, social media users are significantly more likely than other internet users to check their email four or more times per day, and less likely to check infrequently…
I’m no expert, but it seems like it takes a loooong time for communication technologies to die. Radio, tv, newspapers, landlines, postal service, etc… all still with us in huge numbers… email too. Communication options are multiplying rapidly and the old stalwarts are not disappearing… shrinking in many cases… some would argue slimming down from eras of gluttony. This means lots of noise, lots of confusion, lots of splintering of audience. Businesses that can focus attention of groups of people and facilitate communication should be well positioned to provide value. Front Porch Forum is in the business of helping nearby neighbors connect and build community. We’re technology/channel agnostic, but we do know what attributes we like. More to come!
Robin posted this on Westford’s Front Porch Forum yesterday…
Dear friends, neighbors, and fellow gardeners – I have been an avid gardener for years. But last fall I was diagnosed with breast cancer, and I am undergoing chemotherapy treatment every four weeks, which leaves me feeling very weak and sick. So this year I will not be working in my gardens. (I will try to grow some vegetables in containers on my porch, though – I HAVE to have a garden!)
So, my greenhouse and raised beds will lie fallow this season. And I need help to put my garden beds to sleep. I would like to have fertilizer put on the greenhouse beds and cover them with weed mat and my raised beds covered with weed mat before the spring weeds start growing.
The greenhouse has three raised beds that are 4′ x 18′. The outside garden has fifteen raised beds that are 4′ x 4′. All the work could probably be done in one Saturday morning.
Is there anyone – teen or adult – who would be interested in helping me put my garden beds to sleep this spring? Once I find a willing gardener, we can discuss compensation.
Followed by her posting today…
Thank you so much to all my neighbors – many of whom I have never met – for all the offers to help me with my garden! There has been an overwhelming response to my request for help, and as I told some folks already, it truly humbles me and warms my heart! What a community we have – I treasure it!
I have accepted an offer from a local 4-H group to help with the job, so I wanted everyone to know that my need is being met. And again I want to thank all of the kind folks who have offered to help me. It was extremely kind and generous!
She does live in a wonderful town, full of good neighbors. And so do most people in most places. The challenge is unlocking that neighborliness in this era or busyness, individual isolation, and distraction. Reading stories like Robin’s above gives me heart that FPF is succeeding in fulfilling its mission… helping neighbors connect and build community.
Thanks to Shirley in Colchester for her Front Porch Forum posting today…
Last week, Seven Days ran an article entitled The “Porch” Expands. It gives the “history” of the founding of our local Front Porch Forum and I must admit that I was truly impressed by all the work done by Valerie and Michael Wood-Lewis. The Seven Days article was well done and provided all the information I was hoping to find. Thank you to Seven Days and thank you especially to Valerie and Michael for a job well done! May your future endeavors be as successful – if not more so.
I also want to thank my neighbors who have graciously shared the names of your favorite service providers. I am keeping a list and will check it out once the need arises.
A few months ago I formed a book club via FPF — what a fantastic way to connect with neighbors — and while the attendees have shifted each month, the meetings have continued…
Posted by Kate on Front Porch Forum in Burlington today.
Reported on Front Porch Forum today…
Bald Eagle spotted today flying around Intervale compost mobbed by crows around 1:30 pm. I believe someone else reported spotting them at the Intervale on FPF a week or so ago.
Vermont is cold… about 5°F as I type. So this Front Porch Forum posting in Bristol yesterday caught my attention…
A family in need is about out of wood. We have donors lined up. But are in need of a truck to pick up the wood and deliver it in Bristol. The need is today, so it would be great if some can let me borrow a truck or drive with me for a couple hours.
That evening, Bob from the Bristol Energy Committee posted again…
Even with the posting of my request for a truck around 2pm Tuesday – very last minute – I did get responses. Thank you so much!
It turns out we could not wait for the truck – so a car trunk load was delivered this morning – enough for a couple days for the family in need.
We now have a truck lined up to deliver half a cord of wood on Wednesday evening, thanks to a very generous donor. More may be needed, but this amount should hold them for a few weeks.
Thank you all for your generosity – neighbors helping neighbors – YOWZERS!!! Bristol rocks!
A man moved to a new town. He asked a local resident whether the people there were friendly or not.The resident asked the man, “What were people like where you used to live?”The newcomer scowled and said, “They were really an unfriendly and rude bunch, and I couldn’t wait to get away from that place.”The resident said, “Well, I’m afraid you’ll find the people here are pretty much the same.”A week later, another man came to town. He happened to meet the same resident and asked him the same question. The local asked this second newcomer the same question: “What were the people like in the town where you used to live?”This newcomer smiled and said, “Oh, that town was the friendliest place you could ever imagine.”The local returned the smile and said, “Well, I’m glad to hear it, I think you’ll find people here are very friendly too.”
A friend reported that one of the things he loves about Front Porch Forum is that it inspires him to be a better neighbor. For evidence, he cited this recent posting from Deb in Burlington…
A elderly friend is turning 88 this week and he loves rhubarb pie. Does anyone have rhubarb in their freezer from last summer that I can buy or trade for (pie or cookies)?
I see what he means. I especially love the way Deb’s posting will rope others into her act of neighborliness. Kinda makes me want to go clear the iced-up snow covering my neighbor’s impassable front steps. Maybe I’ll get a cookie!
From Sarah in Burlington’s Old North End today on Front Porch Forum…
I would like to thank my neighbor for helping to free my car from the snowbank at the end of my driveway this week. Relying on each other makes a neighborhood, and you came to my rescue when I really needed help, with my dog barking at you the entire time to boot! Thanks again for your help.
We’re seeing many such postings during these past few weeks of extreme snow in Vermont.