Why is this called AMPLIFY! LGBTQ? What are you amplifying?

I’ve spent ten years blogging about my observations and experiences. I’m interested in creating a space in the blogosphere (and beyond) to shine a light on your observations and experiences. I believe that as people get to know their LGBTQ neighbors, friends and coworkers, their understanding of how and why we need resources, supports and laws will grow. Ultimately, AMPLIFY! is about using my own resources to tell an important story that is often overlooked and disregarded with the unique twist of using people’s own voices.

Who contributes to the project?  Contributors should be

  • 18+ (for now, we are working to add voices of youth)
  • have ties to at least one of the 26 counties of Western Pennsylvania
  • identify as part of the LGBTQ community

How does someone contribute?  The best method is to use our online Google form that takes about 20-30 minutes to complete. Or you can contact us via email and ask for a copy of our document with all of the questions. We are working on ways to incorporate oral interviews into the project, but that’s not ready to roll out just yet.

Are contributors anonymous? Yes and no. We require contributors to identify themselves to the editors of AMPLIFY, but we are definitely willing to protect their identity by using first name only, initials, or a pen name. Photos are also optional.

What will you do with the contributions? We will publish each post on the blog and work with other queer artists to further disseminate the information via a series of zines and possibly video. The blog posts will remain a permanent archive accessible via this website.  Please note that we actively distribute links to the posts via social media channels, especially those associated with the LGBTQ community and the counties represented in the project.

That’s a lot of information. What else are you doing? Yes, 100+ responses in seven months is a lot of data. We will be meeting with sociologists, historians, storytellers and other experts to discuss how to best organize the information. For example, we’ve learned that more than 80% of contributors (so far) get their LGBTQ information from Facebook, but more than 25% are not familiar with LGBTQ resources in their community. That disconnect might be useful for organizations and groups who want to connect with more neighbors.

What is the 26 county region? 

Allegheny 
Armstrong

Western Pennsylvania
Counties in pink are the 26 covered in this project
Beaver
Bedford
Blair
Butler
Cambria
Cameron
Clarion
Clearfield
Crawford
Elk
Erie
Fayette
Greene
Forest
Jefferson
Indiana
Lawrence
McKean
Mercer
Somerset
Venango
Warren
Washington
Westmoreland
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