BETA MISSION STATEMENT: Please note: WestVirginiaVille is a work in progress and you are looking at a working draft. It is still in the womb, gestating. Below is an ultrasound of its developing vision

WELCOME TO WESTVIRGINIAVILLE. You ‘re viewing the draft of an experiment in process. WestVirginiaVille is the beta version of a multimedia web magazine and production house devoted to covering West Virginia in a different way . The site will feature a mixture of original writing, photography, video and podcasts along with a mission of pointing readers to some of the best print and multimedia work being done about West Virginia by in-state, regional, national and international media as well as interesting stuff found through social media .

Right now, the site features a mix of curated articles and content from around the web, along with some of my own work, in order to populate the site with examples of the range of work and topics to be considered by WestVirginiaVille. I have been tinkering with the site for awhile and there are some years-old article I have decided to leave up as they still contain intriguing coverage of the state.

SOME FOLKS AROUND THE STATE WILL recall WestVirginiaVille as my personal blog for many years, although it always also had a focus on — to replay its old tagline — “Life in the Hills.”  So, you could say I am repurposing the web address.

WESTVIRGINIAVILLE’S MISSION is to curate, create, collaborate and comment:

  • CURATE: To curate the best writing and multimedia about the state by excerpting and pointing to articles, video, podcasts, photos and beyond. The intention is to keep an eye on social media, for noteworthy exchanges on Facebook, notable Tweetstorms, fine photography and videos on Instagram, Vimeo or wherever the zeitgeist is posting stuff tomorrow. Seen something worth a read? Suggest it.  (In fact, “worth a read” may well serve as a mission statement in brief.)
  • CREATE: The aim is to create original writing, reporting and multimedia on efforts to make life in the state richer and to address perennial problems with an eye towards addressing their causes and figuring out solutions. The focus is not on fluffy ‘positive’ pieces, not that there’s anything wrong with a little fluff now and then. But solution-oriented coverage and analysis about a state all too often portrayed as a basket case.  Talented basket weavers welcome. If you have work worth considering, send it on.
  • COLLABORATE: I invite small and large media outlets, independent and citizen journalists and other media-savvy readers and writers and shooters and creatives to point us to worthy content or to submit it for possible publication (or re-publication) in WestVirginiaVille. Contact us.

  • COMMENT: We’ll be commenting on what we find and encourage you to, as well.

THE AIM IS ALSO to encourage support for existing publications that cover the state . If you read a publication regularly, support it by subscribing, including my former employer, The Charleston Gazette-Mail. These are perilous times for journalism and it’s all hands on deck for media that is essential to you. That’s why you’ll see links to subscriber pages for many of the pieces showcased in the site’s “READINGS” feature. I welcome suggestions of articles and social media worth a mention or a boost. Send suggestions/ideas/tips/feedback to westvirginiaville@icloud.com.

THAT’S WHERE WE’RE AT RIGHT NOW. Visit WestVirginiaVille often and become Official Citizens, Supporters, Ambassadors and Angels once we roll out the infrastructure for the site. More on the several opportunities to become a part of the citizenry of the Free State of WestVirginiaVille to come. Right now, the goal is to make everything free — proof of concept.

PS: Meanwhile. know what happens when you rotate that map  of West Virginia 45 degrees to the right? Here’s what.

Douglas Imbrogno