Monday, July 07, 2014

Let the Summer Sizzle Begin part 1

Welcome to post 1244 of Corneliusonpoint for 2014. Yes that's "one thousand, two hundred, four four entries of our effort to educate, inform and  engage Arkansas' LGBTQ community and beyond concerning an array of issues and content of interest. And what a job that has been since our inception in 2004. According to those fancy Blogger analytical gadgets, COP 24/7 has had over 98,707 page views and has been seen from as far away as the Ukraine and even a few hits from both Russia and China. Of course in those far away countries, this forum has no way of understanding exactly what has tweaked their interest however, we were made aware that some nefarious individuals did actually try to use this platform for unsavory purposes that totally caught us by surprised. Nonetheless, we continue to churn it out, with hopes that maybe any of these postings can perhaps make a difference in some one's life. If not, at least it can be a place to divert your eyes to find out what has grab our attention, enraged us, touch our soul or maybe piece that we thought you should just know about. Its all been right here at COP 24/7 for the last ten years. And now let's sizzle....

Arkansas Represents at NABWMT

The 2014 Convention Planning Committee for the 34th Annual Convention will be
held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, July 8-12, 2014
This year's theme is "Reflecting, Rekindling, Renewing"as the group continues to address issues around racism, sexism, homophobia and health disparities through a series of enlightenment sessions scheduled for the week.

COP 24/7 Executive Producer C. Mabin will present in regards to his literary project being supported via the entities Bush Mallon Institute for Social Justice. The effort will explore the connection of how social media has been instrumental in driving social justice issues and challenges around the world. The goal of the project is produce an anthology consisting of gathered material utilizing multiple social media platforms to demonstrate what issues resonate with both the groups online and offline membership as well as supporters of the group.

National Co-Chair Mr. Mark Behar announced that the conference will launch on Wednesday evening with a Meet and Greet Gathering at Ayzha (pronounced “asia”) Fine Arts Gallery and Boutique with the first ever Art Invitational by NABWMT artists and performers. Behar stated that, "this will be dazzling and this activity is kindly being supported by our friends and brothers of Midland Regional."

Thursday night:  Madam X Talent/No Talent Show at Warehouse/Hot Water, with an incredible sound system, stage, and lighting, with the organizations own in house music maker, DJ Doug.
Friday night: Film and discussion by director and a panel discussion by Queer Youth and Mentors at the Milwaukee LGBT Community Center.

In addition, guest presentations by Derek Spencer of Baltimore’s Jacques Initiative (courtesy of Gilead Pharmaceuticals), Dr. Tito Izard, CEO of one of the area’s largest inner city community centers about disparity of health care, Dr. Mo White, on LGBT relationships, Dr. Kendal Broad on her study of NABWMT and interracial relationships, a first ever color guard by LGBT Veterans, and  the group's signature black and white caucuses, and a first ever health fair. COP 24/7 Executive Producer C. Mabin will present in regards to his literary project being supported via the entities Bush Mallon Institute for Social Justice.

The Doubletree Hilton Downtown will serve as the host hotel and there will be outings to local venues and activities across the city. For more info check out there web site,

Community Paper Assess Pro's and Con's

With the recent launch of Arkansas' only statewide LGBTQ focused newspaper, The READ, of  which COP 24/7 has partnered to produce has taken a step back to assess it's impact and capabilities of fulfilling what the community insisted that was needed. So what has been learned so far? Well, its mixed signals to say the least.

 Despite a successful launch part held at The New 610 Lounge in May, the paper got off to a super start with a sponsorship from management of I-30 Liquor and has subsequently gotten ad support from a few area businesses.

Currently producers of the paper have reached out to a advertising specialist to offer capacity building around ad sales and techniques. However, building a ad base for a new product does take time yet, staff discussions have yield that although the paper would seem to be a natural fit for local LGBTQ venues, so far the result have been marginal to questionable as to the lackluster interest.

Editorial Director, Tonya Estell stated, "I'm somewhat puzzled to this situation. Although I realize that we are a new publication but so far we've put out two great papers that I particularly proud of." She continued, "With the addition of our advertising expert, I have hopes the we can build relationships with those gay owned and operated businesses. From my vantage point, I thought that this was what the LGBT community wanted and I expected businesses to be on board to demonstrate their support. We as a community can't continue to grow if there continues to be shortsightedness and pettiness of by gone incidents."

From a distribution angle, the paper has concluded that executing this task has it challenges and certainly issues when it come to circulating the paper in outlying areas such as Texarkana or northward to the Eureka Springs area. Locally the paper has been available in gathering spots and a variety of outlets such as Adam for Adam and Creegan's Pub. Also subscriptions are available or newspapers can be picked up at the group's offices at 401 North Maple Street in North Little Rock.

COP 24/7 has been aggressively promoting the product through its social media postings and using this platform to highlight scheduled content, pick up points and reach out to contributors for original content and or story ideas.  We are of the mindset that often times new products do need time to scale up their systems and getting their "groove" in order to move forward. This forum was apart the "chatter" and much ballyhooed discussion around "why the area did not have a local newspaper," and now that its is upon us, it would seem that copies would be flying from wherever they are placed.

Not to mention those who sell products, goods, and services would be chumping at the bit to get their brand out front and center into the community. One would think that with all those rushing to court house earlier this year to engage in the marriage equality decision would be needing all manner of services ranging from florist to financial planners. And so it goes as the staff of The READ will continue to do what has not been done while taking the Malcolm Gladwell, "David and Goliath,"
approach to solving problems outside the box as the underdog. For advertising information call 501-379-8203 or 501-349-7777. 



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