I'm back in Germany at long last, and recovered enough from the San Francisco Bay and air conditioning-induced allergies, and jet-lag, to be able to post online again... I really enjoyed the conference info about how various nonprofits created very positive online "buzz" about a particular issue, or how they countered an opposing political effort through grassroots online organizing, etc. BUT... I also kept thinking of how these efforts are NOT always used for "good", and I brought up how it's been through various efforts, including online activism, that the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) has been so severely maligned, particularly regarding its work in China. I've found myself convincing family members back in Kentucky, and friends back in Texas, that, no, what they read in that church bulletin or heard on some local radio program or read on some online discussion group about UNFPA was, in fact, NOT true. How does an organization effectively counter malicious, seemingly-grassroots online efforts to discredit its excellent work? (I've written to UNFPA directly and encouraged them to respond as well, FYI)
I was running around working during the NetSquared Conference, so I didn't have a chance to take part in many of the sessions, including the Project Sprint portion of the conference, when people self-organized into interest groups around a project.
One of the projects I would have liked to have organized would have been people who wanted to create a workshop, FAQ sheet or some kind of tool, to help nonprofits and NGOs overcome their fear of blogging.The three fears I hear the most from nonprofits that are considering blogging are:
1. Our audience will write nasty comments
2. Our staff will write nasty posts and air our dirty laundry
Neville Newey is the creator of two sites called Muti and NewsMap. Muti is a community moderated news site about Africa; it's a memedigger like Digg or Reddit, but focused on Africa news. NewsMap is a site that displays the newest news stories about any geographic location you click on a world map. It's a mashup of Yahoo News and Google Maps with a focus on Africa as well.
In the following interview Neville and I talked about information overload and organization, mashups and Africa.
Just read a bit in Business Week about how businesses are finally starting to adopt Web 2.0 tools into their work. Nothing revolutionary in there for me, but I actually thought the format of the article was really interesting. I'd like the nonprofit sector develop a set of categories like this (sort of) and a list of the technologies that can be applied. An inspiration sheet for folks looking to use new tools to meet their mission.
Now is the time when the technologies available really reflect our values and goals, and it would be great to come up with a giant list of "what if we did that?" So, I think I'll try to spark something over in the Emerging Tech Affinity Group. Join me!
Joe Trippi, the pioneer of Internet political campaigning with Howard Dean's 2004 presidential bid, shares his views on the next frontier in campaign technology for mobilization and fundraising in a May interview in Newsweek which is published on the MSNBC.com website. "I think text messaging is going to be more important than ever. Look at the success of the pro-immigration campaign.