I come not to bury Dennis P. McCann, but to praise him.
Despite having left Newsvine and deleted his column, Dennis is not dead to those of us who have come to count him a friend, and will live on in each of our memories. So, this is not a eulogy...although if it turned into a good old-fashioned Irish wake, I'm sure he wouldn't mind too much.
I recognize that some on Newsvine will be glad he is gone. But, since the vast majority of those are purveyors of ethnic and race-hatred, and can be discounted - at least insofar as their having anything positive to contribute.
For the purposes of this article, I hope to acknowledge the central role that Dennis has played in the lives of so many of my fellow Newsvine community members, by inviting you to participate in a bit of reminiscence of his time here. To share your stories of Dennis, and what they meant to you.
For me, there are many, but the most memorable was participating in his epic 'Iran: Liveblogging the Revolution' thread. Those weeks were the highlight of my Newsvine tenure, and also marked a watershed moment for social news media in general. For weeks, Dennis and a small but dedicated corps of observers monitored the post-Iranian election events, providing breaking news from within Iran as well as providing background, commentary and analysis - not to mention humanitarian assistance.
That time was not special just because it represented a unique opportunity to be on the right side of history as it happened. It also represented one unique window into a turning point that is currently in the process of affecting all media. Those who operated on that thread were not only consistently ahead of MSM outlets such as CNN, but did so with a very high degree of journalistic accuracy. Not only did they offer a counter to the oppressive news blackout the Iranian regime attempted to impose, but they served as a vanguard to the turning of the tide of media in general - away from corporate special interests and towards a more egalitarian, 'crowdsourced' model.
In this, as he was in so many other ways, Dennis served as a leader and an inspiration.
Please share with me - and the rest of the community - the positive interactions you've had with Dennis, and what they meant to you.
Special Note to Trolls, douchebags and purveyors of ethnic, religious and race hatred:
The CoH will be ruthlessly applied on this thread, and I will be merciless about deleting attempts to hijack it. Positive reminiscences only are welcome; all others will be discarded without warning. Go peddle your hate elsewhere.