One of the most wonderful things about social media tools like Twitter and Facebook is the ability to locate and connect with people who care about the same issues as you do – and try to do something about them.
The Twitterverse is loaded with great individuals and groups hoping to raise awareness and campaign on everything from human trafficking to health care, from sports teams draft choices to saving favorite television shows.
(Yes, #heroes fans, I’m getting there!!!)
Here’s just a sampling of my evergreen favorites:
- Women’s issues/rights: @safeworld4women, @thewip, @GlobalFundWomen and @Womens_eNews are just a few of the tweeters out there raising awareness on women’s issues
- Rare Disease: @GlobalGenes and @rarediseaseday are among those raising awareness about #raredisease and what families face in battling rare, debilitating conditions
- Autism Spectrum: @autismtoday and @AutismMomExpert are among hundreds campaigning for #autism awareness and acceptance
- HumanTrafficking: @27millionslaves and @TrafficInPeople are among those campaigning to end #humantrafficking
- Human Rights: @witnessorg , @EnoughProject, @AmnestyUK and @jonhutsun
Continue reading Social Media: Heroes on the Campaign Trail
Most mothers will do anything to protect their child’s best interests and help them succeed. It’s part of being a mom – a reflection of that overwhelming, all-encompassing love that we feel for our tiny mini-mes.
So I guess it’s hardly a surprise that battalions of mothers (and fathers!) out there have joined together to support the campaign effort to raise awareness about Rare Disease Day, February 28. The slogan for this year’s campaign is “Hope – It’s in your genes.”
These parents are simultaneously just moms and dads like any of us, and amazing individuals willing to step forward and try to make a difference. They, and the campaign, deserve our support.
Continue reading Hope – Is It in Your Genes?!?!
For years I’ve told the stories of men, women and children struggling to survive amidst conflict, poverty, human right abuses and a wide array of life’s challenges. Every single one of them had a story to tell that contributes to the diverse tapestry of the global family.
And now it’s my turn.
At a time when globalization and the Internet have connected people across the world in more ways than ever possible before, it’s profoundly disconcerting to feel completely alone. And yet, as my family battled to not only survive – but thrive – though my son’s special needs reality that is exactly how I felt.
Most friends, family and colleagues simply could not understand, no matter how much they loved us. When it came time to put in a feeding tube or make the difficult decisions concerning our son’s health, we were inexorably alone. And scared. And angry. And overwhelmed by the amazing love we felt for our son.
Continue reading In support of Special Teams
What do Mick Jagger, Coca-Cola and Lahore, Pakistan all have in common?
They are all elements in one man’s ongoing jihad to build bridges across borders.
Salman Ahmad is a modern warrior, armed with weapons of mass destruction aimed straight at hatred, mistrust and divisiveness. Using his favored tools – a guitar, haunting melodies and poignant lyrics – he is out to tear down barriers and get people around the world to stop and really take a look at each other.
Continue reading Changing Reality: A jihad we can all support
Honestly, what is Danica Patrick thinking?
Patrick has an impressive racing resume as the most well known female contender in the Indy Car series and the ARCA Racing Series in recent years. She was the first woman to win an Indy car race with her victory in the 2008 Indy Japan Race and her 2009 third place finish in the Indianapolis 500 was the highest finish in the event’s history for a woman. Patrick is on track to make her debut in the NASCAR Nationwide Series this coming weekend.
In that respect she is a great role model. She’s a capable, determined, gutsy lady breaking down barriers. And she and/or her managers are smart enough to market Patrick elsewhere while she’s a hot commodity.
But beside her late night talk show guest spots, most of her appearances outside the racing world – including two Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issues (like this one from 2009), numerous racy photos shoots and the GoDaddy.com commercials – seem more apropos to a centerfold wannabe than a race car driver.
Continue reading Saints not the only winners on Super Bowl Sunday
If recent history is anything to go by, both traditional and new media are going to be flooded with verbiage on Sarah Palin’s appearance this weekend the National Tea Party Convention in Nashville. Love or hate the former-Alaska governor, only a fool would argue the lady doesn’t have an attention-grabbing public persona.
Her supporters believe this the real Mrs. Palin. An attractive do-it-all-modern mom who shoots from the hip, holds nothing back and brushes off emotional punches like a prizefighter.
Her detractors blast her as a manipulative and dangerous talking head that spews vitriol without checking her facts first.
Continue reading Rogue’s Gallery
Over the span of the last two weeks we have witnessed both the power and the folly of new media.
The blogosphere, twitterverse and other online forums proved to be effective rapid-reaction communications tools when a massive earthquake devastated Haiti on Jan. 12. Outside Haiti, the Internet exploded with posts and tweets providing donation information, suggestions to help people search for loved ones and heartfelt entreaties to lend a helping hand. From inside Haiti survivors tweeted eyewitness accounts and offered to help locate loved ones, uploaded information to MySpace, YouTube and Facebook.
Did all this online activity dig people out from under collapsed buildings? Did it put bandages on bleeding wounds? No, of course not.
But it did provide an almost immediate platform for people to come together, share information and reach out with compassion and do what they could to help Haiti.
Continue reading New Media: The good, the bad, and the downright ugly
When electoral authorities declared Iran’s incumbent Mahmoud Ahmedinejad winner of June 2009 presidential elections the power of technology and social networks became front page news around the world. Six months later the power of these new tools to influence the hearts and minds of users around the world is definitively a mainstream concept – and is attracting attention from policymakers.
Iran’s opposition politicians and their supporters rallied to oppose the controversial election, using Twitter networks to inform people in and outside Iran of demonstration plans. As authorities blocked an increasing number of websites and prevented most journalists from reporting out of Tehran, protestors and their online supporters set up proxies to help those inside Iran continue using Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other social networking sites to sidestep official censorship.
Continue reading Changing Reality: Social Networks Power Up Change