Local Blogging – a lesbian perspective
December 29, 2010 marks my fifth anniversary as Pittsburgh's largest LGBT blog and the only one driven by a lesbian voice. Pittsburgh Lesbian Correspondents began as a simply glimpse into the life of a lesbian and has grown to be an important critique on things political, cultural and economic as awell as the lives of local lesbians.
Over the past years, the blog became increasingly driven to politics — from the national Casey-Santorum campaign to the increasing social conservatism of Western Pennsylvania Democrats. That brought increasing heat to me and, unfortunately, many of the other issues I focused on were lost in the politics.
Still, the impact was undeniable. I became the first LGBT blog listed on the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's blogroll. I was invited to participate in the “Women in Media” advisory committe for the Women & Girls Foundation of Southwestern PA. I rallied the heterosexual bloggers to participate in two “Blog for Equality” days to oppose the PA Marriage Amendment.
Still, I'm aware that I filled a niche. Pittsburgh is home to only one other LGBT blog that is regularly updated so I had been able to “represent” well and I'm not ashamed of filling a vaccuum. It does, however, beg the question of whether my blog was political by topic or political simply because it was authored by a lesbian. Am I commodity because of my sexual orientation? If so, how do I leverage that to benefit the community.
I do pay attention to national issues, but strive to emphasize the local angle. That doesn't mean I'm poking through the mud to find a 30 second soundbyte. Rather, I strive to humanize the issue be it DADT or ENDA but reminding readers of how this impacts local neighbors and community members.
I also work to connect local issues to the national scene. This includes everything from non-discrimination ordinances, funding battles and local campaigns.