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Install a Widget. Build a Movement.

Sblog_Network_Widget.jpg

Today we are launching the Streetsblog Network "Action Widget." The Streetsblog Network,
as you may already know, is a collection of about 200 bloggers from all
around the United States who focus on livable streets, sustainable
transport and smart growth issues, usually with a local focus.

The
Action Widget is a tool that members of the Network, or anyone else,
can install into the sidebar of their blog using the code found on this page.
Network editor Sarah Goodyear will update the Action Widget regularly
with legislative alerts, breaking news and top stories from blogs
participating in the Streetsblog Network. Above are three examples of
how the widget would have appeared last week as the House of
Representatives debated the transportation portion of the stimulus
bill. 

One of the things that's become clear to me
watching the Streetsblog Network grow is that these bloggers represent
a vibrant and potentially powerful national movement pushing for
fundamental change in the way we do transportation policy here in the
United States. It is both a strength and weakness of this movement that
its most active and committed members -- the people in the trenches
fighting for better biking facilities, new light rail lines and less
automobile-dependent cities -- tend to be focused on local issues to
the extreme.

One of the big
goals of the Streetsblog Network is to get livable streets advocates to
take a moment to lift their heads from their important
neighborhood-level work and take note of the fact that 2009 is going to
be a watershed year for federal transportation policy, and they need to
be involved in shaping that policy. If they're not, then the
policy-making will be done by the business-as-usual folks, the Road
Gang who, incidentally, can not find 200 local bloggers writing
enthusiastically about the shovel-ready road widening on the outskirts
of town. The Highwaymen have no such grassroots movement behind them.

So,
we hope that the Action Widget can help progressive transportation
bloggers to keep their readers
informed, mobilized and connected to other local activists and to the
action taking place on the federal level. If you have any feedback or
questions about the Action Widget, we really want to hear it. Do you
need help installing it? Does it work on your blog? Would a certain
change in design or function make you more likely to use it? Please
shoot an email to tips@streetsblog.org and let us know what you think.

Likewise, if you prefer a more static "badge" rather than a dynamic widget, scroll down the page. We've designed a bunch of those as well.

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