Terrorism: Web Communities Offer Support

Users reach out online to express anger, analysis, anguish

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'...HAD I MADE A DIFFERENT DECISION, I would have been on flight 11 yesterday out of Boston (I actually have a ticket on my desk for flight 11 NEXT week)... As we debate and examine the madness we are presently living in, I would just like to say that, to have a forum like this, to create community that can overcome and shed light in the place of fear, hatred, and terror is so precious. We must all continue to use our voices to be louder than explosions, louder than the screams that have occupied our ears the last 24 hours.'

?Tym Rourke, Caf? Utne member from Nashua, NH, who was scheduled to take American Airlines flight 11 from Boston to LA Tuesday (posted in Caf? Utne on Weds, September 12, 2001)

If you ever doubted that online communities can legitimately be called 'communities,' the last couple of days should erase any uncertainty. In the wake of Tuesday's shocking terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, millions of people around the globe have turned to the Web to reach out to others, share their analysis, their anger, and their anguish. Caf? Utne member Tym Rourke almost took American Airlines flight 11 on Tuesday. Thankfully, he did not, and is still here to talk about it.

As news spread of Tuesdays attacks, members throughout the Caf? Utne community started new topics to track and discuss the unfolding events. Spirit forum members have been mulling the spiritual and religious dimensions. Currents forum members are posting minute-by-minute news updates and analysis. And our team of volunteer forum hosts are coordinating an effort to track the whereabouts of Caf? users who live in Manhattan and the DC area.

To join these discussions in the Caf?, click here.

More Online Communities

Two other Web communities managed by Utne Communties are hosting extraordinary discussions on the terrorist attacks:

A project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, Tolerance.org is hosting discussions on talking to children about terrorism, and avoiding an anti-Arab backlash.

  • Log onto the Tolerance Forums (registration required), then click on the Community Forum.

In addition to reading this site's wealth of articles and opinions on the attacks gleaned from the alternative press, AlterNet members have been posting some of the best political analysis of the events, and the Bush administration's response, available anywhere.