Thursday, September 30, 2010

"the community is the end goal."

reposted from:

Social Networks Shouldn't Be Used Solely as Fund-Raising Tools

By Derek Lieu
For as long as nonprofit groups have used social-media tools, they have faced the perplexing problem of Internet money math: How do all of those supporters and friends add up to real dollars in the door?

But Zachary Sniderman, an assistant features editor for, suggests that money shouldn't necessarily be the object of nonprofit groups' social-media efforts. Social good, after all, is also about the process of bringing people together.

Take the Livestrong campaign. The group behind the ubiquitous golden wristband, the Lance Armstrong Foundation, recently started a Facebook campaign that encouraged fans to share their personal cancer stories on the social-networking Web site. The foundation wasn't trying to raise money through this effort. It was trying to bring people together behind its cause.

In this case, Mr. Sniderman writes, "the community is the end goal." The campaign did raise money, but as Brooke McMillan, the Lance Armstrong Foundation's online manager, said in the Mashable post, the social good came from "the actions of the people in the community."

Participation in online communities, Mr. Sniderman writes, "can help make [donors] feel like they are part of the organization and part of the solution."

That connection is crucial for advocacy groups, which depend on mobilizing members to rally in support of their causes. "Having a million people is more important than having $1-million," says Ben Rattray, chief executive of the social-change Web site

Do you agree with this assessment? Is social media truly changing the way nonprofits connect with supporters—or are these tools merely new ways to accomplish the same goal?

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Why are friends important to intervene for your goals?

"In fact, the availability of these data, I think, heralds a kind of new era of what I and others would like to call "computational social science." It's sort of like when Galileo invented -- or, didn't invent -- came to use a telescope and could see the heavens in a new way, or Leeuwenhoek became aware of the microscope -- or actually invented -- and could see biology in a new way. But now we have access to these kinds of data that allow us to understand social processes and social phenomena in an entirely new way that was never before possible. And with this science, we can understand how exactly the whole comes to be greater than the sum of its parts. And actually, we can use these insights to improve society and improve human well-being."

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Google Adds Twitter Updates To Search Results

Official Google Blog Article

Here’s a copy of the announcement, which came from search VP Marissa Mayer:

At Google, our goal is to create the most comprehensive, relevant and fast search in the world. In the past few years, an entirely new type of data has emerged — real-time updates like those on Twitter have appeared not only as a way for people to communicate their thoughts and feelings, but also as an interesting source of data about what is happening right now in regard to a particular topic.

Given this new type of information and its value to search, we are very excited to announce that we have reached an agreement with Twitter to include their updates in our search results. We believe that our search results and user experience will greatly benefit from the inclusion of this up-to-the-minute data, and we look forward to having a product that showcases how tweets can make search better in the coming months. That way, the next time you search for something that can be aided by a real-time observation, say, snow conditions at your favorite ski resort, you’ll find tweets from other users who are there and sharing the latest and greatest information.