AP article about cohousing
From: Joani Blank (joaniswansway.com)
Date: Sat, 7 Feb 2009 19:58:39 -0800 (PST)
Wow. I was the first person to talk to Mr. Sainz (as I am the first responder to the Cohousing Association's voicemail). Our first conversation was very brief, and by the second time we talked a couple of days later, he told me that he had spoken to Chuck and one other person. He interviewed me and also planned to contact an older couple living in Fresno Cohousing who had expressed willingness to be interviewed, and that's all, because it was to be a very short article and his deadline was coming right up.. So the fact that he got really busy, talked to a whole bunch more people and found out all that other stuff about cohousing surprised and pleased me.

I checked with Google just now and it seems that the article (twice as long as planned) appeared in 444 newspapers (plus who knows in how many other publications that don't have a web presence)! In one of our Bay Area papers this was the lead article in the Business section. (Sainz is a Real Estate writer for AP though he told me that his articles are frequently published in Lifestyles sections. Where was it in your local paper?)

I absolutely did NOT say that thing about rough spots, nor did I say that "privacy is less of a priority" in cohousing. What I, in fact, said about privacy in cohousing is that we give a lot of attention to creating a really good balance between privacy and community. I'm also guessing that Chuck did not say that Silver Sage Cohousing in Boulder already has "onsite care facilities."

On the whole I think this was a very good article, misquotes notwithstanding, and is sure to raise our visibility quite a few notches. I'm also delighted to hear that at least one local paper tied the AP story into local cohousing doings. Here's the URL for that version of the AP article.

In a post earlier today, Craig said, in reference to the AP article::

"In-the-News [in /Cohousing Now!/] has an article that was published in today's 
issue of The
Olympian on Woodard Lane Cohousing's ground breaking as the lead item.
This newspaper did something interesting... they took the AP article
and blended it with a local Cohousing Event. Those cohousing groups
seeking press coverage can learn from this - take what you're doing to
get attention and try to hook it to a widely distributed story - its
not too late for this, but will be in a week or so"

Please pay heed to Craig's last sentence. It would be good to hear from others of you 
whose local paper DID tie the AP article into local cohousing activity. But if they did 
not, send a letter to the editor, or pitch a story about your group or community to the 
local real estate or lifestyle editor thanking the paper for the article and letting them 
know what your group or community is up to....And don't wait "a week or so." Do 
it now. In the case of Letters to the Editor, daily newspapers are very reluctant to 
print any response that comes in more than a two or three days after the article it's 
referring to was published.

Joani Blank
Swan's Market Cohousing

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