The Commonty celebrates it's first birthday this week...for you proud parents out there - here is a reminder of how things started
Along with the first words, there have been other milestones along the way and the 1 year report card is a real confirmation of the enormous potential and vibrancy of the creative arts in the South West:
In the last year 758 items (not including 'comments') have been posted on The Commonty blog
There have been a total of 59,896 individual visits to individual pages....obviously things started a bit more slowly, but we are currently averaging 6,000 visits per month
There are 209 people signed u to receive the weekly Commonty email
There have been countless supportive and positive comments from people - The Commonty does seem to have become a major window into the region's creative community....the importance of how we present ourselves in the arts, cannot be overestimated for how others see us. One comment we particularly valued was from someone from a national arts body who said that they 'had learned more about the arts in D&G from looking at The Commonty for half an hour than in a years worth of communication with the council' (sorry guys..it was in the dark days of 'restructuring') - The Commonty is now that person's 'go to place' for what is happening in the arts locally.
What this means is that we, in the arts, have a platform to present what we do, in the way that we want to....and it will get seen.
The Commonty was started and has remained something 'from the sector for the sector'....every single thing that has been sent to us has been posted on the blog. We have lost count of the number of times someone has said 'couldn't we get some funding for the Commonty and make it part of this or that initiative'. This has been resisted at every turn - because we believe that the free spirit and anarchy of the blog is essential to what it is...with any funding comes a responsibility to someone else's agenda.
This independence does come at a price however - the blog is run entirely by volunteers who search out material, format/post material submitted, answer emails, manage the database and send out weekly updates. There is an open invitation to anyone to join this group of volunteers....it is good craic to work on and you can do as little or as much as you choose - if you fancy helping out, send an email to TheCommonty@gmail.com
Meantime big shout to everyone who has played a part in this first year: Mark MacLachlan, Matt Baker, Colin Tennant, Linda Mallett, Amanda Simmons, Jane Chalmers, Will Levi Marshall (and Pheobe - for the party), Mark Zygadlo and Colin Tennant
On we go then...anyone with any bright ideas about how The Commonty (or anything else out there) could be done better - don't be shy...get stuck in