becoming a launch platform for great ideas

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Just as you can never really tell if an online community will really take off, you also really don't know what form that success will take. And has proven that in spades.

First there was the out-of-the-blue thunderbolt of site moderator Kate Dugas' "Got Hats?" initiative.

Now comes the runaway success of community member EnviroWoman's blog about her resolution to live plastic-free in 2007.

Each post tells the story – often hilarious – of her attempts to find non-plastic alternatives to a product many of the rest of us take for granted. Her blog posts invariably foster lively comment threads that become little resource libraries, pointing to plastic-free options and information.

Beneath the self-deprecating humour, there's a serious determination to live up to the commitment she's made, and she now has hundreds of fellow community members pulling for her. ( just signed up its thousandth member.)

But that's only the tip of the iceberg: EnviroWoman's saga has struck a chord across the blogging world. Treehugger, the 800-pound gorilla of sustainability blogs, picked up her story; across the Atlantic, her blog has become one of The Guardian's "sites we love".

It's another example of how passion, transparency (check out the deodorant thread) and practical relevance can combine with a distinctive, engaging voice to
yield real power. With a dawning awareness that we'll have to make profound changes in our lives – and that switching to compact fluorescents alone won't cut it – EnviroWoman is steering a deft middle course of change between the daunting and the incremental. And a growing number of people are hopping on for the ride.


Gerry says

April 4, 2007 - 5:28am
It's great to see a site like inspiring and enabling people to go beyond thinking about change and getting out and doing it. Funny, I was drawn to Envirowoman myself, not knowing so many others were as well. We've been reducing plastics in our family for a couple of years now, and yeah it can be a challenging but rewarding road. Choices like stainless steel sippy cups that are plastic-free, but they sure are cold on a little one's hands. Might there be a for other communities in the future? I'd love one for mine here in Sault Ste. Marie.

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