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Objectivism Online Forum

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Since I started an Objectivism Club at my university a year ago with some fellow students, our club has been very active in promoting Ayn Rand's ideas in campus and off. In the process of hosting speakers, coming up with "lesson plans" for meetings, writing presentations and designing many, many fliers, I¡¦ve found it a challenge to effectively communicate with like-minded individual and other Objectivist campus clubs. The Ayn Rand Institute has been very helpful with material support, speakers, and literature, but without a peer-based website, it cannot really form an online community for college students like me. I believe that a new a new site oriented specifically towards university students and campus Objectivist clubs could be very helpful in increasing communication among rational students, sharing materials, encouraging writing, sharing strategies and success stories, and facilitating active discussion in philosophy to increase student¡¦s interest in Objectivism.

The website will be dynamic and multi-user, allowing members, rather than a single webmaster to manage the site, so that each day will bring new content. There are a number of primary features that I have in mind:

  • A discussion forum with a variety of categories of interest to casual and in-depth students of Objectivist.

  • A section to allow the submission of essays and editorials for constructive criticism by peers. I believe that writing about your ideas is the most effective way to learn to communicate them effectively, and this website will provide a forum for beginning writers to present their work while they build up their skill and confidence.

  • A "propaganda" section to share fliers, lesson plans, meeting agendas and ideas, and other promotional materials.

  • Photo albums of meetings, speeches, debates, etc (general and per club)

  • A "swap" section, for buying and selling used books, tapes, videos and other materials that may be hard to find or expensive to get new.

  • A live chat, perhaps featuring scheduled chats with prominent Objectivists, or just pre-arranged topics.

  • Hosted websites¡V free hosting of club pages with templates provided for keeping documents, calendars, and membership lists and generally making professional-looking sites.

  • An "objectivists near you" section to find whether other like-minded students go to your university (and perhaps a personals section at some later date.)

The website will be designed with one of the popular open-source content-management systems, probably written in php/mysql. The name is still in the air -- newintellectual.net is just a working title. I believe that there will definitely arise a need for such a site as Objectivism grows in popularity (if we intent to change direction of academia 180%), and I¡¦d rather create this website too early rather than too late.

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