Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of BBC Online lies a gem of a website.
In 2001, the BBC acquired h2g2, then a precocious two-year-old website. BBC execs actually acquired more than the innovated software with which they jump-started BBC Online. Along with the software package came an opinionated online community and its product, that is, online content. Fact, fiction, prose, poetry, debates, photos, recipes and travelogues; the BBC got it all.
Almost ten years later to the day, the BBC announced that, as part of a cunning plan to do "fewer things better", h2g2 would be "disposed of".
BBC executives must perceive some value in the diamond that is h2g2, because they want to find a buyer. Ultimately the BBC's h2g2 is a corporate product to be sold.
Our h2g2 is a sprawling universe, a well-stocked library, a literary magazine, a place to hone writing skills, a salon in which to discuss ideas and events, and a cozy pub. Cool, smart, articulate people live in our h2g2.
Since the BBC's January 24 announcement, our h2g2 has been a beehive of activity. Within two hours of the BBC's announcement, the h2g2 Community Consortium (h2g2c2) formed to ensure the survival of the site and its community. Less than a week later, h2g2c2 has over 200 members. Most are current or former contributing members, but some are h2g2 enthusiasts who have never logged on.
That's right, BBC execs. Your h2g2 is an asset with a price tag. Our h2g2 is a community of writers, readers, and fans.