Announcing the New Chicago Debate League Blog

We are pleased to announce the launch of the new CDL Blog –

www.chicagodebateleague.wordpress.com

The CDL Blog will become the primary vehicle by which the CDC will communicate with coaches, debaters, and judges, replacing the CDL Listserves and their Files pages as our top-priority and consistent medium, though at least as of now we intend to continue to post emails to notify you of new posts or new files uploaded to the CDL Blog.   And you should continue to feel free to use these Listserves to post your own messages to the CDL community.

The CDL Blog will provide the CDL with a centralized location for dispersing all CDL-related information and announcements, and will serve as a multivaried resource for debaters, coaches, judges, and volunteers.  And it will enable conversations within the CDL community, as it features a comments function on almost every page.

All new posts will first appear on the Home page of the CDL Blog.  Only the most recent 10 posts will stay on this page, the 11th most recent post (and all older posts than it) will appear in the relevant archive-month, clickable on the right margin of the CDL Blog.

Additionally there are a number of tabs across the top-banner on each page, along with drop-down menu options for most of the tabs.  The pages that correspond with each tab and menu option won’t change as frequently as the Home page, but rather mostly contain information and resources that are useful in what we anticipate will be an on-going basis.  Instead of our trying to describe each tab and menu option, though, we recommend that you peruse around the blog yourself first, and contact us with any questions you have.  We’ll also be emailing you about where various pieces of information can be found on the blog in the days and weeks ahead.

Documents will be accessible on the CDL Blog in two ways.  First, we will include links to relevant documents embedded within a post or on a page of the blog.  Second, we have links to a full set of CDL Document Files on the bottom of each page of the Coaches and Debaters, and MS Coaches and MS Debaters, pages.  All files embedded in a post or on a page of the blog are contained in the CDL Document Files – in other words, the CDL Document Files is a comprehensive repository of CDL documents.  Our intention right now is to take down all of the files on the Listserve Files pages by the end of next week – all these files are already in the CDL Document Files.

Two notes about the CDL Document Files.  First, it would be useful for you to know that the files are hosted on www.box.net.  You can access the CDL Document Files from the CDL Blog with no box.net account by simply clicking on the link at the bottom of any of the Coaches or Debaters pages.  But if you want to go to the CDL Document Files directly, not by going through the CDL Blog, you will need a box.net account.  You can get a free personal account here –

https://www.box.net/signup/h

We are not asking anyone to get a free account with box.net – it’s not necessary to do so, all of the same files are accessible as long as you access them from the CDL Blog.  But the option is yours.  (Footnote: I’ve found one, and so far only one, annoyance in having a free box.net account: they send you a lot of unnecessary emails asking you to use your account with them, unless you change your settings to “No Emails,” which is easy enough to do.)

A final note, about the blog, not about the CDL Document Files.  The CDL Blog has beta status (Footnote: I had to have this defined for me – it means it’s still being developed though it’s developed enough for initial use).  Lots of changes will be made on a regular basis, it’s not at all “final”.  New features will be added and some portions might be removed as we figure out what is working and what needs to be improved.  So, naturally, we very much welcome your feedback, of every kind and variety.  Feel free to comment to me, leslynn@urbandebate.org or 312-427-0524, ext. 1 – or to CDC Development and Advocacy Fellow Bill Altorfer – billaltorfer@urbandebate.org or 312-427-0524, ext. 3– who has is responsible for initiating and doing most of the work on this project.

We are planning to launch later this fall a public website that will function as an advocacy vehicle for supporters, prospective supporters, the media, and for all those in the broader Chicago area and beyond who want to know more about the Chicago Debate League as an education project.  The CDL Blog we intend to be our comprehensive electronic center for programming in the Chicago Debate League, for use by coaches, judges, administrators, and debaters throughout the CDL.  Its higher purpose is the improvement of the CDL.  Let us know how it is doing toward that end.

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