The following is from the book The Networked Nonprofit by Beth Kanter and Allison H. Fine. “Connecting with social media to drive change.” Chapter one talks about the difference between atom-based work and bit-based work as well as social media tools and social media myths. Atom-based work- taking physical action (cleaning up beaches, testing water). Bit-based work- taking action online (social media, FaceBook, Twitter). This chapter used the word “engage” quite often. “…engage people locally and energetically on behalf of the organization.” “…engage people in shaping and sharing their work in order to raise awareness of social issues, organize communities to provide services, or advocate for legislation.”
The social media tools they talk about fall into three categories: Conversation, Collaboration and Network. Conversation includes startes like blogs, YouTube and Twitter. Collaboration includes tools likes wiki and Google Groups. Network includes builders like Facebook, Myspace and Twitter. This chapter then goes on to talk about young people. I gathered four key elements: Think, Connect, Engage and Work Together. “Social media use is becoming ingrained in the way that people relate to one another and work together.”
Social media myths: social media is just for kids, our constituents aren’t online, face-to-face isn’t important anymore, social media isn’t core to our work, using social media is hard, using social media is time consuming (which is true in some cases). Each of these myths are that just myths. Chapter one ends with social change and powers for social networks. “Change happened because individuals began to adjust their behaviors based on the norms developed within their social circles.” Social change- any effort by people and organizations to make the world a better place. “Conversations activate the natural creativity and passion that people bring to causes they care about.”
I would imagine many people want to help, they just don’t know how or where to start. Reading this book, seems like a great start to helping out. I personally plan on putting a little aside each paycheck for nonprofit organizations. Every little bit helps.