One of the questions people have been asking about Atheism Plus is, “What exactly will it do”? Which is a very reasonable and fair question. A bit premature, perhaps, given that less than two weeks ago this was just a germ of an idea about wanting a new wave of atheism, and the actual tangible thing is, as of this writing, less than four days old. But still, a fair question.
And one which now has its first answer: A+ Scribe. A project to transcribe videos, podcasts, and other media in the atheosphere that aren’t accessible to the deaf and
hearing-impaired hard of hearing. From their mission statement:
The mission of A+Scribe is to help improve the accessibility of resources in the A+ sphere (and eventually beyond) to Deaf and Hard of Hearing readers. We will strive to honestly, accurately, and completely transcribe as many inaccessible resources as we can.
Accessibility for the disabled is a major social justice issue. And accessibility on the Internet, where so much atheism activism and organizing gets done, is a major issue for the atheist community. I am delighted that this A+Scribe project is happening. And I’m tickled pink that it’s happening less than two weeks after this germ of an idea about Atheism+ was floated, and less than four days after the actual tangible thing was launched. If you have a podcast or video you want transcribed, let them know. And if you want to help, they would love to hear from you
And can I just say: I can’t wait to see what else comes out of this! As of this writing, the Atheism+ forum already has over 700 members, with over 2500 posts on over 300 topics. (I think I’m beginning to see the real peril of this thing: it is a huge, much too tempting time-suck.) There’s been a lot of controversy and debate over this idea, at least some of which is understandable — but I think it’s obscuring the fact that what this is, basically, is a community. A community of people who share some common values and goals, and who want to work together on those goals. If something this concretely useful has already come out of it just in its infancy, I cannot wait to see what else we are going to do.