June 29, 2009

Introducing Socialbrite: Why we’re here

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Socialbrite team

JD LasicaSocialbrite.org fills a glaring gap in the social media world. While young people and early adopters increasingly turn to the social Web not only to socialize but to communicate, explore new ideas and share new experiences, nonprofits and social change organizations are still generally stuck in the top-down, one-way world of Web 1.0.

The young and the wired are moving at an accelerating pace away from old-school destination Web sites and toward the social media ecosystem embodied in the real-time Web. In this new world of Twitter and Facebook, of citizen journalism and astonishing grassroots campaigns like Twestival, it’s easy to feel befuddled by the dizzying pace of change.

socialbrite rings 143x143iThat’s why eight leading nonprofit technologists and social marketing experts have come together to create this learning and sharing hub. Socialbrite is here to offer articles, videos, resources and tutorials on how to take command of all this Web 2.0 jazz and put it to work for your organization or cause. (We created a cheat sheet for you to help tweet our launch.)

And please note: We’re here not only to show how social tools can be used to advance the social good – but to learn from you as well. We’ll be republishing some of these articles on learning wikis, and everything here is released under a Creative Commons license, so we hope you’ll take part in this ecosystem of sharing.

A sharing and learning hub

We invite you to cruise around the site — and we hope you’ll help us spread the word. You’ll notice that we’re not starting from scratch. You’ll find:

• A directory of Web 2.0 Productivity Tools in dozens of categories that can help organizations get a handle on the social Web.

• A Social Media Glossary that offers a deep, friendly introduction to dozens of social media terms in plain English.

• A first-of-its-kind Twitter widget that tracks tweets about nonprofits or social causes in real time.

• A Free Photos Directory, Free Video Directory and Free Music Directory that offers nonprofits, cause organizations and Web publishers a guide to hundreds of online resources for adding legal, high-quality content to their own websites, blogs, newsletters, printed materials or online presentations.

• A Causes widget that points to charitable actions and donations on other sites such as Global Giving and Facebook Causes.

• Scores of additional articles, guides and tutorials to help newcomers and veterans alike get better acquainted with this fast-moving space.

Team members

I (@jdlasica) am joined in this effort by:

• Beth Kanter (@kanter), the author/trainer/strategist behind Beth’s Blog

• Katrin Verclas (@katrinskaya), founder and editor-in-chief of MobileActive.org and past executive director of NTEN.

• John Haydon (@johnhaydon), who advises small non-profits, small businesses and social entrepreneurs on how to implement inbound marketing strategies with the social web.

• Amy Sample Ward (@amyrsward), organizer of London Net Tuesday, who connects nonprofits with new media technologies.

• Ken Banks (@kiwanja), a Hewlett Foundation grant recipient who focuses on using mobile technology to foster positive social and environmental change in the developing world, particularly Africa.

• Sloane Berrent (@sloane, a Kiva fellow, social philanthropy activist and a former executive at Causecast who’s currently serving a three-month tour in the Philippines.

• Carla Schlemminger (@carlainsf, who has more than 17 years experience in marketing communications, branding and strategic public relations.

Credits for our launch

We want to acknowledge some of the people who got us to the launch pad:

Esteban Panzeri, the brilliant Argentinian developer and tech god who built most of the site based on some sketchy wireframes.

• The team at BlitzLocal in Boulder, Colo. — especially Dennis Yu, Chad King and Austin Stierler — who took us under their wing and agreed to host us for free.

• Beth, Amy, Katrin, John, Ken, Sloane and Carla, who all took a leap of faith in signing onto this team effort.

• Matt Mullenweg and the entire WordPress development community for their open source code and awesome set of plug-ins. And a thank-you to the coders at Intense Debate for the commenting system we settled on.

Uta Ritke, the Marin County graphic designer who designed our logotype.

Chad Capellman of Boston, who lent his development help and keen CSS eye to this project.

Elegant Themes, the WordPress premium themes house that gave us the underpinnings to build our customized theme upon.

Please join the conversation

We want this to be your site, too! Please add your voice — tell us what conversations, articles and resources you’d like to see on Socialbrite.org in the months ahead.

As we explain on our About page, we’re out to bust some silos. When it comes to sharing insights about the tools and best practices that drive the social Web and advance the social good, the nonprofit, citizen media, open source and education communities have more in common than we realize — but we rarely talk with each other.

So one of our goals at Socialbrite is to help people in any sector get up to speed on the social Web and find the right strategy and tactics to help your organization or cause.

We believe that people — not large institutions — will be the driving force behind social change in the years ahead. People want to make a difference, and now we have the tools to help others — directly, smartly, without intermediaries.

It’ll be fascinating to report on those developments — and put them into practice — in the years ahead. Hope you’ll pay us a visit and follow us on Twitter!


Tweet our launch!
Site announcement: news release
About SocialbriteJD Lasica, founder and former editor of Socialbrite, is co-founder of Cruiseable. Contact JD or follow him on Twitter or Google Plus.

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9 thoughts on “Introducing Socialbrite: Why we’re here

  1. Pingback: New Models for (Philanthropy) Research & Dialogue « Philosopher 2.0

  2. Socialbrite.org is a great community. The contributions of Uta Ritke, Chad Capellman and Elegant Themes are really appreciable.

  3. Thanks. I'm already compiling a roadmap of improvements and additional features. Let us know what you'd like to see here!

  4. Great site you have set up. i am happy to find some forward thinkers to get this off the ground.You are so right that many of those in the NP sector are left behind and lost. Maybe this collection of people and info will demystify it somewhat.
    Very excited to see it happen.

  5. Great site you have set up. i am happy to find some forward thinkers to get this off the ground.You are so right that many of those in the NP sector are left behind and lost. Maybe this collection of people and info will demystify it somewhat.

  6. Pingback: Social Media tools for social change | Social Media FM