Actually, anyone can join now, (testing) actually, it is not an automated script (moreovernews.com) etc...that is not the purpose of the site.
The purpose is to provide, volunteer, work experience in the field. (thus people add there own news, and comment on the news) Somewhat like fark.com, Also its in line with "News for the people, by the people" its not like CNN, where all the news is gathered for you by one source...
really nice idea for a web site. im sure there are loads of interested community groups and organisations that could submit articles and link to/from.
my main criticism would be that the design doesnt seem to reflect the idea. it doesnt come across as 'friendly' with all the square boxes and times new roman text, but rather as a information utility site.
you could perhaps make use of the four colours in the logo in the design of the rest of the page to continue the theme and soften the overall visual impact. would also use some different, softer, fonts.
the message board page has a completely differnt design layout than the rest of the site. when i first clicked on it i thought id linked outside your site. also seem to be a few links to the page you are already on, but no link to the main page.
the header on the e-cards page reads TalinkAbout.com. is it supposed too? am i missing something?
might want to think about having a login page for registered users to go to rather than having a login box on everypage. would also give more room on the page for its content.
i really do think its a great idea for a site especially since there are probably more online communities now than there are real world communities, and keeping in contact, sharing news, thoughts and feelings is taking place via technology more than ever.
what i wrote with the .bmp that was too big, got refused and disappeared was:
ive attached a quick drawing to suggest a way you could think about redesigning talkingabout.com
as you can see ive put the logo in the middle and have boxes sitting around it so the layout continues the theme of the site.
the colors ive used are from the logo. bg is the white (f9f7e7 249,247,231), the boxes are the red (e20a16 226,10,22), i would have the text in the black (020202 2,2,2) and links in the yellow (eea809 238,168,9).
the bigger boxes could have text areas within them as color as bg, and the smaller boxes could contain links. you could either just have the boxes that you need with text in them or you could also add empty coloured boxes to fill in the gaps.
you could have the drop-down menus on top of each other rather than next to each other to fit in the box at the top of the circle.
as for font, i would use a handwriting font for the headings such as bradley hand itc, lucida handwriting, or mistral, and either trebuchet, verdana, tahoma, or arial rounded mt bold for the to-be-read text.
hope this is useful, if i think of anything else, or come up with other better layouts ill let you know.