A little over a year ago, on a frigid Saturday in January, I had what you might call a date with destiny. I'd agreed to meet three men in a bar in East Liberty. I'd never been there, but I'd read about the place. As I looked for the street and then the number, I considered what I really knew about these men. Very little. All three, however, had developed a reputation in certain circles for their “activities.”
I got out of the car and walked quickly to the door. I hesitated, then took a deep breath and walked in. I quickly glanced around the place. The front room was empty with a faint smell of old cigarettes. Around the corner, I heard laugher, and there they were — all three of them just sitting there — bloggers.
Yes, bloggers — those flouters of journalistic tradition. Well, we had a great talk, and an idea began to emerge. And as the months rolled by, the group grewand the idea did too. The idea is simple: build a bridge between Pittsburgh and Pittsburghers everywhere. Connect Pittsburghers far and wide with this city and region. Welcome their input and effort in the ever evolving quest to build the greatest city in the world. That's my version of it at least.
The effort now has a name — Into Pittsburgh — and you can see an early version of the logo on this page. You'll hear more about Into Pittsburgh as time goes by. For now, you can start to get involved in the dialogue by going to ittsburghquarterly.com. We have a growing community of bloggers represented, many of them writers whose work you've seen in the magazine.
Pittsburghquarterly.com is undergoing its own renaissance, changing from a sleepy little site to one that we hope you agree has a lot to offer. We have a weekly report from web editor and veteran Pittsburgh journalist Jeffery Fraser. If you want an excellent writer's report on the most interesting and pertinent events of the week, try Jeff's blog.
What is IntoPittsburgh? My version of the message is this: It's a group of people around the world who want to leverage Pittsburgh's distributed social and financial capital to improve the Pittsburgh region itself -- economically, culturally, and socially. How can you be a part of it? One -- self-identify. Tag your blog posts. Ask me to put your name on my "Pittsburgh 2.0" list to the left. Two -- reach out. Go to LinkedIn (http://www.linkedin.com), sign up, and search for and join the IntoPittsburgh group. Three -- get involved. IntoPittsburgh is a message, not one specific program. Figure out how your organization (network, family, friends) can participate -- socially, culturally, economically. Click on some of the Pittsburgh 2.0 profiles to the left for examples.