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Friday, December 14, 2007

Starting a Group on Ravelry

Starting a group on Ravelry doesn't sound all that intimidating, does it? But in truth, I've never been a group-starter. Rabble-rouser, organizer, synergy source, enthusiastic supporter, even ad-hoc or temporary leader, all these, I've been. But I've never just started a group and said, "come join."

I know, I know. It's about time then, isn't it? And I'm already caught up in the details. What to use for a banner? How irreverant to be at the start? Best give them some idea of what I'm like; wouldn't want to shock anyone who came looking for "Mary Ingells" and found someone a bit more like "Anne Sullivan" than they were expecting. I'm just not the reverant sort when it comes to blindness. [grin] But I don't want to drive away any new blinks or 'tweeners who are still shaky about the whole thing. Hmmmmm. This makes choosing a name a bit of a challange, too.

If I put "blind" in the title, will the folks with Macular Degeneration or other Vision Impairments similar to mine not consider themselves eligible? Many people resist the word "blind" on so many levels. "Blind Webs"? "Tinking in the Dark" ? I myself no longer really like the word "Low Vision" as a social term. It's perfectly fine as a legal or diagnostic term, but wishy-washy, hesitant, or temporizing to me for social use. VI sounds like we're in a sci-fi movie. Hmmmm. Do crips or deaf people on the web have these difficulties too? Well, perhaps I should just use the word "Blind" in the title, since it's my favorite. Clear cut -- unlike actual vision loss most of the time -- descriptive, and short. It's amazing how political a simple word choice can become. [sigh]

"Blind Webs" it will be. A group for knitters, spinners, and crocheters with vision impairments of all sorts and their friends. Ever wonder what to get a blind knitter for Christmas? Wonder where to find patterns in an alternate format? Trying to find a good way to mark your decreases or increases without having hundreds of bits of string hanging from the piece you're knitting? Someone here has probably run into the same problem. "It's highly unlikely that you are the first person in history ever to have this difficulty!" So spoke My Mother the Oracle in the year 1992, modern era.

Hmm. Now. How to drum up business. I've got one other knitter interested already. Ah -- a discussion of web braille on the audiobook group? THAT would be a good place to start! Hm, hm, hmmmmmm. Now I need to go find a cool picture of a spider web for the banner!