“In building healthy, productive online communities, one of the most important ingredients is to seed those communities with thoughtful, intelligent and proactive people as leaders who initiate and steer along productive discussions. In creating Newsvine, which has grown to the size of millions of active users, we did not know whether that factor was achievable or not, beforehand. Ponderwell was created by some of the very people that helped make the Newsvine community take off. So, it is highly likely that with the involvement and work of these proven leaders, the project will set off on a path toward building and maintaining a healthy forum for its user base.”
— Calvin Tang – Newsvine.com Founder.
“There has never been a time when local coverage was more necessary and important than the present. It is simply impossible for financially strapped traditional media to keep up with the many events and happenings in our community. The idea of an organization focusing on community journalism represents an intelligent and forward-looking response to this difficult news environment. I am confident the structure outlined would create excellent internship opportunities for journalism and media students at UNC Asheville.”
— Alan Hantz – UNC Asheville Professor of Mass Communication
As the Representative of the 114th District in Buncombe County, I am pleased to endorse the work of Ponderwell Software and Web Development of Asheville, and their proposal for a grant allocation for community media development.
Ponderwell proposes an innovative application of their product to benefit the community. Informational in nature, their idea is to invest time and resources to create a website that would function as community news. It would provide assignments to writers and receive their submissions for consideration and editing.
An exciting aspect is that Ponderwell envisions receiving submissions from young writers on subjects like news from their school, thereby providing a feeder program for interest in journalism, as well as community support for schools. This is particularly timely as we see a decline of interest in printed news. There is a real need to find new ways to supply our diverse communities with all kinds of information.
I believe the idea Ponderwell proposes merits your serious consideration and holds great potential for benefit to our community. Please call on me if I may be of any help as you go forward.
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— Rep. Susan C. Fisher, 114th District in Buncombe County (Download official letter as .doc)
The Ponderwell project is a great idea and is exactly what Asheville needs. As the founder of the Urban Arts Institute I would love for our community to know about our programs and to understand the positive affect it has on our young people in underserved neighborhoods.
— Michael Hayes, founder of the Urban Arts Institute
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“As director of a holistic school, Ponderwell’s proposal strikes me as simply PERFECT! For Rainbow Mountain Children’s School, the project presents an opportunity for our students to engage in authentic learning (meaning learning while doing REAL work for the community). When students engage in authentic learning they are motivated to do the highest quality work possible. They are often more innovative than adults. Ponderwell’s proposal would give student’s opportunities to learn and develop skills in writing, technology, and a multitude of disciplines while providing a community service. I am 100% supportive and looking forward to our kids participating.”
—Renee Owen, Executive Director, Rainbow Mountain Children’s School
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[vimeo width=”640″ height=”380″]http://vimeo.com/29622144[/vimeo]
— Mickey Gamble, President and Co-Owner, Crossroads Entertainment and Marketing
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— Clark Mackey, Owner Sparkdog Web Marketing
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— Allen Singleton, Chief Operating Officer at Biblio, Inc, an asheville based technology company.
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— Bill Rhodes, Local Professional Photographer
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