Net Tuesday, August 4: Adding social elements to our/your website

summerlagerJoin us for our next Net Tuesday event on August 4. This will be the second of our Summer Ale Series, “Homebrewed Rumination”.

We’ll have an interactive discussion about what to consider when integrating social elements into a website. We’ll be looking at such themes as how a website can:

  • Help people connect to one another
  • Aggregate information
  • Foster collaboration
  • Encourage self-expression
  • Reach out to the rest of the world

We’ll explore each of these themes in general, and then focus on applying them specifically to: a) Philly NetSquared’s own new, drupal-based site, phillynetsquared.org; and b) other sites represented or suggested by those who show up and participate.

In this way, we hope to accomplish two things… Let’s think together about how the new Philly NetSquared website might foster our individual and collective ideas and ambitions about “using the social web for social change”. And, at the same time, let’s talk about these principles in general, and how they might enhance your own site or cause.

So, bring your own perspective, creativity and open mind. RSVP’s are desired, but not required.

Looking ahead to SeptemberNetwork For Good, Causes and change.org, oh my! These days there are so many portals to use for raising money and engaging members in action on behalf of your cause. How do you choose which one(s) to be on? Does maintaining them take away from your other online efforts (e-news, blog, etc.)? Which ones have you been successful on? These questions and others will be discussed at our Portal Pilsner session, the last of our Summer Ale Series, on September 1. Have a story about a non-profit portal you want to share? E-mail Judah at jferst@buzzing4change.org.

Net Tuesday June 2: Mobile Technology for Social Change

Mobile technology is one of the fastest growing areas of digital technology. And developing applications for social change is following apace.

Our next Net Tuesday on June 2 will be about mobile applications for social change. Again, we’ll be meeting at Buffalo Billiards, 118 Chestnut Street. We’ll start gathering at 6:00 PM, and the program itself will begin between 6:30 and 6:45. RSVP on Meetup.

What does mobile technology for social change mean?

Ivan and Seth will discover part of the answer attending the 4th annual NetSquared Conference (N2Y4) in San Jose May 25–26, which is featuring a number of mobile projects, competing for $50,000 in prize money to further their development. (This page provides ways to follow along with the conference.) Ivan and Seth will report back on what we thought were the most interesting projects.

And, we also want to hear your thoughts and experiences (and hopes) about using mobile technology for social change. If you know of any local projects in this arena, please let us know. If you think it’s interesting, please come and share your perspectives.

The featured projects at N2Y4 include:

So come, bring your mobile device, and discover and talk about how these little machines are starting to play their part in improving the world.

Net Tuesday May 5: Nonprofits and Twitter

The next Net Tuesday will be next Tuesday, May 5 from 6:00 – 9:00 PM at Buffalo Billiards at 118 Chestnut Street.

Come learn about how nonprofit and social change organizations are using the micro-blogging service Twitter.

The popularity and creative use of Twitter by organizations has been growing exponentially.

  • How are nonprofit and social change organizations using Twitter to engage with their audiences?
  • What strategies are useful, and what pitfalls should you avoid?
  • Can you really say anything in 140 characters?
  • And how can you tell if your efforts in the “Twittersphere” are effective?

Join an interactive discussion about lessons learned and future plans of local nonprofit and social change organizations for using Twitter. The Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance will be discussing its recent use of Twitter to engage its members in online advocacy efforts and “live reporting” from events like Philadelphia City Council meetings. Take a look at their Twitter stream.

We’re also inviting other local groups — if you work with or know of a local organization using Twitter, let us know!

Philadelphia Net Tuesday organizers will be Tweeting in advance of our gathering as well as at the event. We encourage you to Tweet about it as well — just use the hashtag #phlnet2 — and if you’re not on Twitter, you can follow along here.

ss_aa_logoWe have a special sponsor this week: bg Theory, an Internet marketing training company. In support of Net Tuesday, bg Theory is offering a discount off of their upcoming Google Adwords seminars in Philly May 20 and 21.  To get the discount, go to the registration page, and enter meetnet as the discount code.

RSVPs via the Meetup page are helpful, but not required. Feel free to show up, and bring a friend. See you next Tuesday!

—Seth (Twitter: @sethhorwitz) and Ivan (Twitter: @rootwork)

Net Tuesday February 3: Democracy 2.0 and social change

We gratefully acknowledge this meeting’s sponsorship by the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, leading the effort to increase awareness of, participation in and support for arts and culture in the Greater Philadelphia region.


Our Net Tuesday Philly on February 3 will focus on “Democracy 2.0” — how the social web is being used for political and civic engagement.  This was considered a big factor in Barack Obama’s successful campaign, and is poised to permanently and profoundly alter the landscape of politics from now on.

  • What can non profits and social change agents learn from these early experiments?
  • How can our efforts reflect and reinforce this new political paradigm?
  • What implications  does Democracy 2.0 present for how we engage with clients, with our causes and with one another?

We’ll have an interactive discussion with a great panel, including:

  1. Ian Storrar, Chief Operating Officer of Mobilize.org, an all-partisan network dedicated to educating, empowering, and energizing young people to increase their civic engagement and political participation. He is heavily involved in the Democracy 2.0 process, which is the central theory of change at Mobilize.org.  Ian is based in Washington, DC.
  2. Rob Stuart, Founding President of Evolve Strategies (a full-service communications firm serving issue advocacy, nonprofit, and political organizations) and the Evolve Foundation (which supports efforts to increase citizen participation in government). He has been an activist and lobbyist for over 20 years, and will talk about the dynamics of advocacy and Democracy 2.0.
  3. Michael Tweed, organizer of the Ben Franklin Thinking Society will present what his group is about and their initiative (and Meetup) called Democracy 2.0, an attempt to generate ideas that will use technology to improve the democratic process by making representatives more accountable and people more knowledgeable.

Plus, there will be plenty of time for schmoozing, networking and meeting other folks who want to use the social web for social change.

NOTE THE NEW TIME AND PLACE:

When: 6:00 – 9:00 PM on Tuesday, February 3

Where: Buffalo Billiards, 118 Chestnut Street in Olde City.  (We have the 2nd floor private room to ourselves.  The first two hours (until 8 PM) are Happy Hour with half-priced appetizers and $3 draft beer.)

RSVP’s via our Meetup page are requested, but not required, for this fun and informative event.  Feel free to just show up, and bring your friends.  Hope to see you there.

More details about January 6 Net Tuesday on Blogging for Nonprofits

January’s Net Tuesday will be about Blogging for Nonprofits.

Whether you’re thinking about starting a blog or want to make your existing blog more effective, we’re planning a program that will :

  • feature nonprofits that are using blogs successfully to raise awareness, raise funds, find volunteers and achieve their mission — and how they are doing it
  • share techniques, strategies, tools and resources for effective nonprofit blogging
  • explore thorny issues , such as how to reconcile the need for a blog to have a personal voice, yet also represent the many voices of an organization

We’ll be using an “open panel” format, featuring some local non-profit bloggers, including:

In addition to an informative, interactive discussion about issues confronting new and veteran nonprofit bloggers, we’ll have lots of practical tools and opportunities.

Nate Gasser, of Rock River Star, will demonstrate creating a new blog during the evening with one of the attendees (maybe you?).

We will also introduce an idea to provide ongoing support and encouragement for new and current nonprofit bloggers.

You are encouraged (though by no means required) to RSVP via the Meetup page for this event.

This promises to be another intersting, fun and useful Net Tuesday.

Hope to see you there,

Seth

Net Tuesday, January 6, 2009: Blogging for Nonprofits

January’s Net Tuesday will be about Blogging for Nonprofits.  This is an important, growing topic (which generated a lot of interest at December’s Social Web Carnival).

Whether you’re thinking about starting a blog or want to make your existing blog more effective, we’re planning a program that will :

  • feature nonprofits that are using blogs successfully to raise awareness, raise funds, find volunteers and achieve their mission — and how they are doing it
  • share techniques, strategies, tools and resources for effective nonprofit blogging
  • explore thorny issues , such as how to reconcile the need for a blog to have a personal voice, yet also represent the many voices of an organization
  • work on concrete ways we can help one another to achieve our own nonprofit blogging goals

We’re still building the program.  If any of you know of any local nonprofits that are blogging – especially (but not necessarily) whose blog we might feature or who we might approach to present — can you please help out by emailing their blog URL (and contact person if you know it) to Seth Horwitz at ReachSeth@gmail.com.  (If you’re not sure if what they are doing is technically a “blog” send it on anyway; we want to gather the information.)

RSVP’s are requested (but by no means required) via the Meetup page.

Updated info on the Social Web Carnival on December 2

When: This Tuesday, December 2, 2008 6:30 – 8:30 PM

Where: Independents Hall, 32 Strawberry Street in Olde City (Strawberry Street runs parallel to and between 2nd and 3rd Streets, and IndyHall is between Market and Chestnut.)

Plans for the Net Tuesday Social Web Carnival are coming along nicely. Here’s how it will work…

People will visit each of 5 stations throughout the room. At each station, we will brainstorm ways in which that station’s tools have been or can be used for social change causes, as well as ideas for future Net Tuesday programs and other ways we can support, learn from and inspire one another in the Philly area. Then, we’ll come back together to share some of the insights and ideas that were generated. The stations will be:

  • Writin’ Roller Coaster (blogging, microblogging …)
  • Multimedia Midway (photo, video, audio, slide sharing services; podcasts, vlogs …)
  • Ferris Wheel of Friends (social networking sites)
  • Folksonomy Funhouse (tagging, social bookmarking …)
  • Freaks and Geeks (everything else: wikis, mashups, e-democracy, RSS, mobile apps …)

What will you get out of this fast-paced event?

  • Non-profit and social change activists will discover more about the tremendous power of these tools, and will likely come away with new ideas about how they might be used for their own organizations or causes.
  • Techies will learn about the hopes and needs of people who can imagine using these technologies to make the world a better place.
  • Visionaries and career changers may discover opportunities and gaps that have not yet been revealed or filled.
  • And all of us will have a chance to make friends and contacts, to help shape Net Tuesday (and NetSquared) programs for 2009, and to generally continue advancing Philly as a place for progressive social innovation.

If you haven’t already RSVP’d, it would be helpful to do so via the Meetup page. But that’s not required; feel free to show up and bring a friend.

Questions? Contact philly@net2tuesday.org.