Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Why video matters

OK, folks, I am still waiting for your ideas on how to develop the "philanthropy and social enterprise channel" for If you don't send me some thoughts soon, they may revoke my crown as queen of the channel, so help me out.

What am I looking for? Here's the thing. The world is a visual place. Pictures are great - just look at the communities and friendships that have been built using Flickr. But things move. And so video is even better.

Try this analogy: If YouTube is the illegitimate love child of HBO and ComedyCentral mixed in with your neighbors' home slide show and some porn, then is the result of a rendezvous between the BBC and PBS, that took place in the best independent bookstore and was recorded by an an info sciences geek. (Can I get sued for saying these things? Is Viacom or the RIAA coming after me next?)

So, is creating a channel (an organized, curated collection of video clips, linked to blogs, documents, websites, public campaigns and other stuff we can think of) about philanthropy and social investing. I'm the curator of the channel (or, the queen, as I prefer). I want to make this useful and exciting to social entrepreneurs, donors, community activists, foundation professionals, nonprofit leaders, investment advisors, and everyone with a stake in the public good. Some ideas:

  • We can use the resource to post video clips of really fabulous conference plenaries. Create an online conversation about the topic. Link to clips of authors reading from relevant publications.
  • Post point/counterpoint videos.
  • Build a collection of effective, philanthropically-supported public awareness campaigns and have an online discussion of why some work and others don't.
  • We can have a best party hat contest from foundations' holiday parties (That's a joke - just checking that you are still reading).
  • But we could have a community-votes contest on best PSA. Contests are big - check out the netsquared proposals or the NTC Video Contest hosted over at
  • We can make the channel the 'go-to' place for philanthropically-supported content about climate change, health, education, the arts, and so on.
What do you want to watch? Let me know. If I have to make this a contest to get ideas, I will (that is intended as a threat).

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