Happy Thanksgiving to our American readers!
My normal procedure on Thanksgiving is to thank everyone who makes Gates of Vienna possible. But the number of people I need to thank has grown so huge — the tipsters, correspondents, translators, and contributors now comprise more than a hundred people — that it is very difficult to do. I made an attempt during our fundraiser a couple of weeks ago, so that will have to serve, even though I left some people out — which is all but inevitable.
I’ll just thank everyone together: you all know who you are.
Let’s back off a bit and see what makes all this work. The various categories of people who are necessary for the functioning of this enterprise are:
- Video people
- Contributors (in the sense of writers who contribute guest-posts)
There’s a lot of overlap there — some people wear several hats. We have tipsters who are correspondents, and contributors who are also translators. This is a distributed operation, so the assignments tend to divide themselves up amongst the people who can best perform them.
The larger enterprise has become considerably more effective over the last two or three years because we have collected enough people to perform all the necessary tasks. We also have (mostly) sufficient redundancy to make sure we can do the job when required.
For example, yesterday afternoon our Danish correspondent TB sent a tip about the “Terror Cell” TV series. He didn’t have the time to translate the Politiken articles, so we sent the task to Anne-Kit in Australia, who delivered the translations promptly. Another volunteer then YouTubed the trailer (minus the commercial, thank you!), and the whole piece was posted on the same day the articles were published in Denmark.
Now that’s efficiency.
And it had nothing to do with me or Dymphna, but everything to do with the Gates of Vienna community. This transatlantic (and trans-Pacific) confluence of talent and dedication is what makes our project possible.
So thanks to everybody for being willing to work together towards our common ends. It brings to mind a relevant chapter from the Tao Te Ching:
The very highest is barely known by men.
Then comes that which they know and love,
Then that which is feared,
Then that which is despised.
He who does not trust enough will not be trusted.
When actions are performed
Without unnecessary speech,
People say, “We did it!”
— Lao Tsu, from Tao Te Ching, Chapter 17