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Attack of the Blog

December 24, 2012

Every so often I return this blog and decide, “This time I am really going to commit myself to this and make it happen.” 

This is one of those times.

Now entering my second semester of grad school, I have so much I want to comment on and many things to say, none probably worth reading, but at least this will give me a forum to say them.  So let my recommitment to this blog begin… let’s see how long this lasts.


Mixing Business and Pleasure Managing Your Personal and Professional Brand in Social Media

March 18, 2011

Good Morning!! At the NonProfit Technology conference, 7am is too early for any conference session.  But let’s do this! #11ntcbrand

Okay, many people use social media both personally and professionally, there is much overlap.  Is that good? Bad? How do you deal with the overlap? continues to be mentioned among early technology adopters. hummmmm.

Farra Trompeter from Big Duck – The question is.. WHO ARE YOU??  I am a ____ in ____ for ___. -This is your personal statement.

What comes up when you google yourself?  Claim your name on different networks.  Register your name as a domain.  Listen some tools: Twilert allows you to then respond.  to help you select tools based on your goals.

One of my bisggest pet peeves is people with two facebook pages.  Don’t do it!  Use privacy settings to manage who sees what.  You are one person.

Measure your social capital.

What you write can be read by everyone/anyone.  Personal example from speaker, Judi Sohn: lawsuit against school because of daughter, and lawyers pulled up everything and all comments. Clearly defined focus, set boundaries, speak to one person, wear professional hat separately.

Don’t just repeat company pr, never mention a competitor except to praise, never mention colleague except to praise them, open season on vendors and consultants, be honest.  No conflict of interest.

Danielle Brigida (@starfocus)  Risks of “Personal Brand” ?? Common fears: Stalked, fired, risk funding, caught making a mistake, ignored, ivolved in a touchy public conversatin, stuck in your current job. Fear of harming family. Apologize immediately, if you’ve offended anyone. Find your funders and engage them, don’t hid from them out of fear of loosing them.

Your passion is incredible and worth sharing if you can bring it into your work that is awesome…unstoppable maybe.

It’s okay to be yourself and still represent your organization.

How do you make your personal brand not feel like a part time job?  Love what you are doing! Is that too simple, perhaps, but should help guide what you do.

Harrisburg University Social Media Summit

September 22, 2010
Harrisburg University Logo

Harrisburg University cut off all Social Media for one week

Harrisburg University has been running a social media experiment with their students, cutting off their access to Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube for a week.  With a slight bit of irony, in the middle of their “Social Media Blackout” last week, they are held a Social Media Summit. I spent the day at said summit and picked up some interesting bits during the four panels.

Panel 1: Social Media and Policy Issues for Employers, Educators and Parents
The first panel contained four lawyers.  The one major thing I learned – lawyers hate social media. With the inherent risk through the openness, you obviously need to be smart and be careful.

As an employer who uses social media, it is important to have a policy in place for your your employees. While the lawyers might want you to give a detailed “do not do” list, it is more important to give guidelines and encourage them to do positive things.

They sited the case, City of Ontario vs. Qwan, as a case where you can legally dismiss employees for using technology for personal use, while on company time. In this case, police officers were using city issued cell phones to make personal calls, while on the clock, they were lawfully dismissed from their jobs.

The lady lawyer kept emphasizing that you are able to punish your employee’s (or student’s) actions, but do not make it a habit, policy, or expectation that you will monitor their online presence.

Panel 2: Cyber Advocay: Social and Media Political Change
As someone involved with social media to ignite change, being told the power that social media has to make social change (notice the social aspect of both) is fairly unnecessary.  However, this panel felt the need to reiterate this.  Still though, there were a few good points and thoughts.

Highlighted were some key online threats.
Accidental – In 2008 United stock dropped significantly due to an accidental news alert. The news alert was generated because of a site reorganization, that caused an old bankruptcy article to be resurfaced, which was then posted by a significant Wall Street blogger, which caused a panic selling of United stock.
Deliberate but uncoordinated – Two dominoes employees posted a video, documenting the disgusting journey of a piece of cheese. Dominoes had no social media presence and they were caught with their pants down, and no way to quickly react. This single video and the inability to react quickly cost dominoes 2% of profits.
Organized Campaigns –

Also in this panel they discussed the big question Return On Investment (ROI).  What is it? How do we measure it?  The general consensus is the ROI is about interaction, in short – Quality over Quantity.

One interesting sited example was (national educators association), they looked beyond themselves to see who is affected by the issues concerning educators and how could they leverage those connection.  As a result, NEA helps to organize parents supporting the issues that affect both their children and the educators.  I thought  it was a great example of using your connections to make an impact online.

Dennis Owens, news anchor, WHTM, Harrisburg, discussed how he was reluctant to adopt new technology, in part because he felt threatened that the permeation and speed of technology and news would replace him as a news anchor.  He joked with the internet and Twitter, “I’m irrelevant,” and said, “Everyone is a journalist now.”

Personally I think this is an interesting topic, “the current state of news” with the ability to follow events as they happen from many angles, I wonder if it is going to give a fuller understanding of the events, or because there is so much out there is it going to polarize the news even more.

Joyce Davis from the Save the World Foundation, discussed how governments can loose control (whether that is a good thing or a bad thing probably depends on the situation).  She also brought out the fact that many people underestimate the power of emerging technologies to make social change.
Champions of Causes

Throughout this panel I was continually thinking about the redefinition of “community.”

Panel 3: Social Media Innovation something or other
This panel started by posing the question to the audience, “What is innovation?”  I’m not sure what the answer ended up being, but for me, innovation is a new solution to an old problem.

During this panel, I was reminded of how many people have an incorrect view of social media. Few people would say there is anything wrong with staying in touch with friends, marketing your service or product to interested people, expressing your opinion to your political leaders, but when you do this things “online” through “social media” people view these things as new and scary.  While the means might be slightly different, the message and the concept is the same.

Richard Bonds, from the PA Department of Travel and Tourism (or something similar) summarized how everyone should think and act in regards to social media and their interactions and promotions, “Be real. Be human.”  I can’t describe it any better.

Be real. Be human.

Panel 4: Training and Education through Social Media
Collaboration, collaboration, collaboration was the take-away during this panel, and really should be a driving factor behind all things social. John Chamber of Cisco, was quoted as stating that cisco was “moving from command and control to collaboration.” Hence, the “human network.”

This panel, more than any other got me excited for teh power that can be harvested through social media.  People are unlocking potential, by building “thinking networks,” where collective thinking can come together to solve complex problems. There truly is power in numbers, but even more so there is power in numbers, where those involved have diverse backgrounds and thought processes, everyone looking at one problem from different angles. The potential power is amazing.

One of the panelist brought out how if around the proverbial water cooler, everyone stopped complaining and started sharing the things that they are learning, we cuold work together to increase each others knowledge. Just imagine the rich knowledge that could be shared in an organization

“If you don’t work for a company that supports social media, quit your job and get a new one, you will be pushing a rock up a rope.” Being involved in social media is no longer not an option.  If you expect to survive as an organization, you must be in the social media conversation, if you are not there and have no plans to get there, your organization will probably not be around in another 5 years.

Overall, it was a fairly interesting day with some great conversation.

Watch the Panels here:

Panel 1:

Panel 2:

Panel 3:

Panel 4:

Be real. Be human.

At the Social Good Summit! pt 2

September 20, 2010

Following a small break, the second half of the summit is ready to resume.

Sharon D’Agostino, VP Worldwide Corporate Giving, Johnson & Johnson

J&J dedicated to women and eliminating intestinal worms. Low resource and middle resource countries often have cell phones.

Oren Jacob, Executive Producer “Ready, Set, Bag”

A film about the National Grocery Bagging Championship.  All money from monetized sources online go to foodbanks. Has chosen an individual food bank for each individual location that releases the film.  COLLABORATION is the success of this idea, take a film, connect it a cause, use the cause to help raise awareness for the film and the cause.

Amazing work in Seattle, breaking traditional molds to promote a film.  Funded 7,000 meals in one week. Theatrical exhibition run.

Jessica Jackley, Cofounder/CEO ProFounder & Kiva

Stories of sadness made her feel guilty, but was still giving when it was easy. Admits sometimes donations to poverty is a “transaction” to allow you to continue without feeling bad.  6 years ago she first heard of Microfinance, a new tool to help the poor, it had new stories that were of hope, not of sadness.

Interviewed $100 entrepreneurs, and was continually surprised of the great outcomes. This inspired the creation of Kiva.

Using real photos and real names and real photos are powerful illustrations.  The power of CONNECTION participate in each others’ stories. “We have a lot of the right tools right now”

Entrepreneurship = hope, Entrepreneurship = tomorrow > today

Dr. Lisa Masterson, “The Doctors” Maternal Fetal Care International

Rachel Sklar, Editor-at-Large, Mediaite

The World in a Grain of Sand – MDG, improved childbirth and infant mortality rate. “Connect to Care” – using technology to have US doctors monitoring fetal things in developing countries from their homes.

Dr. Lisa’s call to action, find an MDG that calls to you and take action.  Here they are:

  • Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
  • Achieve universal primary education
  • Promote gender equality and empower women
  • Reduce child mortality
  • Improve maternal health
  • Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
  • Ensure environmental sustainability
  • Develop a Global Partnership for Development

Doc Hendley, Wine to Water

I’m interested to hear from Doc , such a great idea. The power of one person to make a difference in the 1.1 billion people who don’t have access to clean water.

“if you find something you are passionate about, no matter who you are or what you do, it will make a difference” – Doc Hendley

Bonin Bough, Global Director of Digital & Social Media, PepsiCo

Does business act responsibly? Less than 20% of Americans think so.

Companies are see the value of being a corporate citizen. Marketing 101, no longer broadcasting, but engagement, because the technology now allows us to do that.

Chris Hughes, co-founder Facebook, founder Jumo

Stopping a button short, Chris Hughes begins talking about Haiti.  $31 million raised through text messages.

People want to help

Crisis response is not a sustainable solution

Jumo want to invest in people doing stuff. How does an individual find an organization, stay in touch, and support it’s work. Relationship maps, no network for those trying to do good.

Jumo’s early model –

1. Find – Jumo finds organizations connected to your interests

2. Follow – provides a service that connects to users where they are (no need to return to Jumo)

3. Support – Only expects people to donate after they have built a relationship with the organization

Technology is just the platform, a supplement to those that do the work to create social change.

501(c)3s will be able to create Jumo pages as soon as it is launched.

Matthew Bishop, The Economist

Those who are trying to change the world, never know if what they are doing is making a difference, or if there is someone else out there, working on the same things and if they worked together, could they do more good.

New technology allows us to build in measurement, which we can now do easily.

Edward Norton, Crowdrise

With the far reaching goals of MDGs are they reachable?  Not without smart committed people working at the local level.

Realized that social media is more than the impulse to share personal narrative. Feels you can create purpose driven social media.

Crowdrise is about taking action. Designed to be easy to use and a place to view yourself as an agent of change.  Crowdrise is designed to be fun with irrelevance. After just a few minutes on Crowdrise, I found it’s humor to be slightly addictive.

Ted Turner & Pete Cashmore, Founder/CEO Mashable

“Ted Turner has literally done things that have changed the world” – Tom Kaplan, President of the Board of Directors, 92Y

Ted Turner pledged $1 billion to the United Nations Foundation.

Wall Street Journal and NY Times appeal to smarter audiences. Motioned to get rid of Nuclear Weapons, the Ayes had it, nuclear weapons are gone.

Why to the MDGs matter? Cut the rate of poverty in half over a decade. We must at least make a decent effort to cut down the incedents of poverty.  We must at least try something. First time we are in position as humanity.  Humanity must do something. Cut the military, look at Costa Rica.  “War is obsolete, you end up bombing your customers.” 1 billion people will go to bed hungry tonight.

If we only had 2 billion people in the world, everyone would be wealthy. Print itself is going to fade away, and fairly quickly.

Most pressing issue is Nuclear Weapons.  Who wants the power to push a button and wipe out life for all intensive purposes.

Pete Cashmore gives the final remarks.

Great day!

At the Social Good Summit!

September 20, 2010

Blogging live from the Social Good Summit

I’m going to take a stab at my first live blog.

Adam Hirsch, kicks things off and announces Mashable’s Social Good channel.  Runs through the general thank yous and encourages everyone to check in using there favorite service.

Susan Smith Ellis, CEO of (RED) (

Not a social media expert, but understands the power and “The Network Effect” ( Believes that there will be a preminant social network for social good.  1/2 million tweets turned red, for Worldwide AIDs Day.

What is (RED), what they do, how they do it.  Only 4 years old, works to with business to drive sales.  $148 Million raised in those 48 months!  Strive to humanise HIV/AIDs, and tell stories. Check out the Lazarus effect. What does $.40 get you?

“Social media will be the engine of our success”

Created partnerships, in an effort to allow business to succeed in their business while easily doing good for others.

Ray Chambers, Special Envoy of the Secretary – General for Malaria

Millenium Development Goals, “so daunting and far reaching, can we reach them?”  Put them to the test in real time at two places in Africa. Malaria has killed over 3 billion people.

Had to raise awareness in 2006, only 21% of us citizens viewed Malaria as a threat. $80 million raised, 50 million people saw, from “Idol Gives Back”  Predicts 0 deaths due to Malaria by 2015! Due to hard work and collaboration.  Ashton Kutcher donated $100,000 to give nets to stop Malaria when he reach 1 million followers on Twitter.  Top 100 tweeters, $200 million raised, 25 million people tweeted too.  End Malaria written on the hands, simple and pwerful. Roughly 175 million people reached.

Thinks social media can make the same impact on MDG as Malaria.

Geena Davis and Soledad O’Brien

Geena Davis started an organization because the lack of female characters in the movies.  Geena, used data to prove the lack of female roles in movies.  Davis always behind female roles in the world, including sports and creating a greater female presence in the white house.  The Whitehouse Project – only 18% woman in leadership roles.

Adam Conner, Facebook – Harness the power of social media to reach MDG

MDG written before the social web existed.  Haven’t even tapped in the ability of social games, for social good. Challenge ourselves to apply the MDGs to social web.  “It can start with the click of a mouse, but it doesn’t end there”

Sherri Westin, EVP, CMO Sesame Workshop

Has an HIV positive character on Takalani Sesame, South African Sesame Street.  Helps to normalize what HIV/AIDs is and how it affects people. Also provides a great educational tool. Kami, shows the power of a sesame street character.

Judy McGrath, CEO of MTV Networks

Must engage the Millenials, to make a difference in the world. Believes that music, social politics, and government and all interconnected. 600 mil homes. Has seen the cause, result and authenticity. Elizabeth Gore asks, what do young people want – Jersey Shore or Political Change?  McGrath sidesteps.

Highlights what a “normal millenial is” social conscious, what to hlp and make a difference. Showed an interesting video. Video – “the world needs more fun”

Judy McGrath announces Girl Up! an MTV initiative for women.

Howard W. Buffett, Director of Agriculture Development, US Department of Defense

Ripping story about teh effort that a young girl spent everything to send him a few emails.

Must bring humanity back into technology, “people watch on a screen when they should see with their eyes,” we are not in a need of tools are new technology, but we are in a need to act.  Technology can not create the long term sustaining relationship.  Technology fulfills the need to get involved.  Be human.  Use tools to bring more people to the front line.  Cannot judge innovation on how it moves us forward, but looks back and inward to connect with who we are.

How can the everyday person help? HB – help those that are taking the lead and teh from line.

Carrie Jones, Harvard University – Digital Youth and the Social Good

The GoodPlay Project, digital youth and ethics.  Acting anonomously and broadcasting. Ethical faultlines – identity, Privacy, Ownership and Authorship, and Participation.

Selected findings – consequence thinking (it’s my space, I’ll do what I want, don’t tell me what to do), moral thinking (golden rule), ethical thinking was rare (thinking beyond one’s self).  Feel the internet is just for fun, the power of the internet on young people often goes unharvested.   Few adults present online with adults.

Suggests more entry points and more way to get youth involved to use it for something greater than themselves.

“Mentor young people to use social media for social good” – This is the second time I have heard this theme come up lately.  Just because young people know how to use social media, does not mean that they know how to use social media to make social change, or even how to use it in business.

Team Assembled

September 6, 2010

Going from zero to 10,000 in two months, is a goal better achieved as a team effort, not a solo mission.  The committee used to look into social media and the communication habits of teens was shrunk to make a nimble team that could move fast and react quickly.  Coming from an organization that has been working around a specific model for over a decade, a certain amount of bravery is needed as we begin to explore uncharted territory.

We have chosen a four man team.  Each member brings something different and very valuable to this journey.  Our team consists of, The Director – able to make instantaneous decisions and put them in motion with the swoop of her finger, The Communications Specialist – with words like weapons he can craft on-point and on-brand messaging with a dangerous back arsenal, The Community Organizer – with contacts and allies around every corner, her years of building connections have led to a small army waiting in the wings ready to come out when needed, and me, The Marketing Specialist – years in the trenches as the idea generator with an interest in emerging technologies and a slight case of ADD.

As this team has recently formed, we have started with several accomplishments, but even more tasks to finish.  Push on we will.

Over the Cliff

August 30, 2010

I’ve spent much time preparing, researching, and educating others in my organization about the importance of social media.  My hope was to convince the decision makers that this was a necessary endeavor.  I convinced them. Now what?

One critical mistake, I didn’t think beyond getting the green light.  Years of pushing a boulder up a hill, I didn’t think about what was going to happen at the top. We’re there, and now there is a run away boulder.  In a matter of days, the Caring Place has gone from “we will eventually do social media”  to “we need to have 10,000 likes in 2 months.”  (Why 10,000?) Watch out everyone and everything below!  

In an effort to document what goes well and what doesn’t I will be following the process through this blog.  There are plenty of good resources available that will be utilized throughout the process, including, Beth Kanter’s Blog.  I will share others I find along the way. 

Let the Quest to 10,000 begin.