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I want/need your help designing AMERICAblog 2.0

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We're going to soon be launching a major revision of the blog, and while we've been scheming on this for a good year, I'd like some input from you guys on two things.

1. Graphic design.

This is my weakest area of expertise. I can shoot a pretty photo, but I'm not good at creating beauty - I find they're different skills (capturing vs. creating). I really could use some advice, suggestions, mock-ups of what you all think AMERICAblog 2.0 could or should look like. I'm talking graphically. The layout of the page, the colors, the background color, should I include any images and if so where, our logo?

2. Substance.

We already have a VERY good idea of what we want AMERICAblog 2.0 to have in terms of the administrative interface, but also in terms of the content and tools we offer YOU. Meaning, enhanced commenting features, more video and audio offerings, enhanced use of RSS feeds, perhaps even diaries (i.e., the ability to create your own sub-blog on AMERICAblog), and more. Even though we have a good idea of what we want, I still wouldn't mind hearing what YOU want. I'd love to see some mock-ups - I know a few of you sent these before, and I'd love to see more.

What kind of added functionality would you like to see on the blog? For example, would you want to be able to customize the blog home page so that you only get the info you want - e.g., posts about gay issues, or posts about Karl Rove? What abilities would you like to have in the comments, in the diaries (if we have them).

Please post your comments in the comments or email me directly. Thanks, JOHN

PS If you send me any suggestions, you immediately and fully relinquish any and all rights you may have to those ideas and you give me permission to use those ideas, without remuneration, in AMERICAblog 2.0. I don't want to get sued for "stealing" anyone's ideas :-)

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