Booman Tribune is brand spanking new. It is a SCOOP site.
As everyone here knows, the greatest of all SCOOP sites is Daily Kos. The site is designed to be familiar to regular visitors to Daily Kos. It shares many features in common with dKos.
Some immediate differences between the site and dKos need to be explained.
World Recommended Diaries
During registration users are divided into `Americans' and `others' in order to allow a separate `Recommended Diary' category called `Recommended World Diaries'.
`World Diaries' are those diaries submitted by non-American registered users. They are judged according to a different standard in order to compensate for the general tendency of Americans to show more interest in domestic issues. It also helps compensate for the fact that this site will have more American users than users from any other single country.
All diaries, irrespective of the residence of the diarist, are eligible for making the `Recommended Diary' list. This will sometimes result in a diary being listed in both the `Recommended Diary' list and the `Recommended World Diary' list. This is anticipated and not considered a problem.
Automated Regional Open Threads
Another feature of this site that is not shared with dKos is the regional open threads. The regional open threads are accessible by clicking on the `Midwest', `South', `East', `West', and `World' buttons at the top of the Home page.
[We are still tinkering around with these a little. But essentially, they will refresh after 250 comments. Markos tried something similar with his Open Thread for a while.]
Anyone can participate in these open threads, but they are intended to promote coordination among users from similar regions. They are open threads, so anything can be discussed on them.
What's The Site All About?
The site is not affiliated with the Democratic Party. However, the Democratic Party is the only institution in this country that is capable of combatting the Bush administration's agenda, or of offering a realistic alternative to the GOP's control of both houses of Congress.
Therefore, the site is committed to building the Democratic Party, raising money for the Democratic Party and its candidates, finding and promoting promising candidates for state and local offices, helping to shape the Democratic Party's agenda, and holding all office holders to account for their votes and their ethics.
The site is also committed to doing some of the investigative work that is so desperately needed with the GOP in control of the oversight committees.
Are you trying to compete with Kos?
Nope. I'm a long-time Kossack who loves this site and what it stands for, and how it works, and many of the members that I have met here.
There is no competition for Kos, because this site is the best, and it will remain the best.
I will be forever indebted to Kos for creating this community and inspiring me to get off my duff and start fighting back.
It was this web site that motivated me to drive to Florida and help organize Sarasota and Manatee counties in Florida, and then to come back and do GOTV for Delaware and Montgomery Counties in Pennsylvania.
It was this site that showed me the power of what I call 'Collaborative Open-Source Investigative Journalism' and made me want to create my own web site.
So, no I am not competing with this web site, I am adding my voice to a movement and trying to help that movement grow.
What's with the Frog?
"It's of keen interest to me, to see whether or not we can get Karl Rove frog-marched out of the White House in handcuffs.'' - Joseph C. Wilson IV.
To learn the etymology of the term frog-march you can read this column by Bill Safire. He may have spent his career shilling for the Republicans and our intelligence services, but he is a reliable source on language.
In any case, Booman Tribune encourages its users to band together to do the investigative journalism that the mainstream media has forgotten how to do.
The frog is a reminder that politicians do occasionally get drummed out of office for corruption or unethical behavior. And we would like to speed that process along.
In fact, our motto is "We Won't Rest Until They're Frog-Marched Out"
So, even if the amphibian is a criminal, you must learn to love the frog.
Some other notes:
Please be forgiving if you encounter problems, or if you find that all the bells and whistles don't work right.
One thing I have gained as a result of creating this site, as though it were possible, is even more respect for Markos than I already had.
He has made dozens of technical decisions on how to configure and develop his site, and they are almost all dead-on correct decisions.
He has been developing this site for years and creating all kinds of neat features like dKosopedia. I can't compete with dKos for sophistication and ease of use.
If you find something broken or just have a suggestion for how to make something work better, there is a Suggestion Box Diary.
We will eagerly consider all the feedback we get.
Lastly, we are still running on our developmental server. I don't know how well it will hold up to an influx of new visitors. We'll be flipping over to a more powerful server tomorrow or the next day. If you encounter problems accessing the site, please make a note of it in this diary and make sure to visit BooTrib again in the coming days.
So that's it. That's my introduction. Feel free to click over to Booman Tribune and post away! ;o)