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Media Release: QueerNet and Online Policy Group to Merge


Will Doherty, Online Policy Group
415-826-3532, doherty@onlinepolicy.org

Roger Klorese, QueerNet/PLUSnet
415-269-2147, rogerk@queernet.org

QueerNet and Online Policy Group to Merge
Nonprofit Organization Bolsters Universal Access to the Internet

San Francisco - December 12, 2000 -

Management of QueerNet/PLUSnet (http://www.queernet.org) and of the Online Policy Group (http://www.onlinepolicy.org) today announced a merger designed to bolster universal access to production and distribution of community-based information on the Internet. Under the merger agreement effective January 1, 2001, QueerNet and PLUSnet will operate as distinct projects of the Online Policy Group.

Online Policy Group executive director Will Doherty said, “Subtracting from the digital divide by providing certain Internet access services is a critical component of the Online Policy Group’s mission. Our merger with QueerNet/PLUSnet allows Online Policy Group to offer free email list and web site hosting to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, as well as to other communities such as racial, ethnic, and religious minorities, women, youth, elderly, and disabled individuals and groups.”

QueerNet founder Roger Klorese noted, “Community groups often face unmanageable barriers to entry onto the Internet. Building on a decade of service to queer organizations, we are a trusted provider of Web resources run by and for the organizations we serve. QueerNet is thrilled by the opportunity to further expand nonprofit Internet access while providing nonprofits tools to maximize their presence on the Web.” Klorese will serve as Secretary and Director on the Online Policy Group board of directors.

"In today's world, people must have access to online information to participate fully in society," Doherty continued. "The Online Policy Group assists communities of people who are traditionally underserved, underrepresented, or who have faced discrimination and are not reaping the benefits of the promise of universal access on the Internet."

QueerNet has provided email and web site hosting services to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, as well as other “people like us” through PLUSnet since 1991, explained Klorese. QueerNet/PLUSnet hosts over 60,000 subscribers on 500 email lists for an extremely diverse constituency (available at http://www.queernet.org/index.html#subscribe).

As a result of the merger, the Online Policy Group announced that the California Coalition for Civil Rights and the San Francisco-based Queer Executive Directors group have obtained web hosting services at http://www.caccr.org and http://www.queereds.org respectively.

Individuals and community groups seeking donation-based access to email list and web hosting services may refer to the web page at http://www.onlinepolicy.org/hosting.htm or call the Online Policy Group at 415-826-3532.

The Online Policy Group provides research, outreach, and action on online policy issues such as online access, online privacy, digital defamation, and the digital divide, serving communities such as the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, racial, ethnic, and religious minorities, women, youth, elderly, and disabled communities.

The Online Policy Group is accepting nominations for additional board directors and advisory board members and is seeking a diverse pool of applicants. The organization also seeks volunteers, interns, and contributions of equipment, goods, services, and funds.

The Online Policy Group has an informative web site at http://www.onlinepolicy.org

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