Monday, January 7, 2008

The Non Profit Web At Work

I'm a member of the Non-profit Web 2.0 group on Facebook and today someone posted a link to this article by Alexandra Samuel originally from the blog Social Signal.

The article is called "Best practices for non-profits using web 2.0" and it outlines the following best practices:
  1. Focus your site on a particular goal or conversation.
  2. Invite your community to make contributions other than money.
  3. Play nicely with other non-profit (and for-profit) organizations.
  4. Ease into the web 2.0 culture by making effective use of existing web tools
  5. Be patient with colleagues who need to get comfortable with this new approach.
  6. Stay current with how other non-profits are using web 2.0, and learn from their experiences.
I applaud Alexandra for this list - it's well thought out and very practical. I'd encourage anyone in the sector to read the entire article, as well as the case studies she provides.

The thing I'm most struck by, however, is the way these conversations are now making their way through the internet. If you read the entire post, it follows a thread that began on her blog, moved to LinkedIn Answers, moved back to her blog, and then ended up on Facebook - where all 521 members of the Facebook group are now able to participate in the conversation. This is Web 2.0 at its finest - simple conversations that begin in one location, take on a life of their own, and expand to include hundreds of other voices along the way.

This is the power of information in motion. This is why it's so important for non-profits to engage now - while these patterns of interaction are still forming - to fully benefit from this new way of communicating.

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