Details on the NonProfit 2.0 Conference

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Updated November 9, 2009

It’s with great pleasure that I am joining Allyson Kapin and Shireen Mitchell in organizing the first ever NonProfit 2.0 Unconference.  The Friday, February 12 event will be held somewhere in Washington, DC. What better way to kick off Valentine’s Day Weekend then with some love for our society and the people trying to improve it.

The event has already attracted some high caliber talent. Twestival Founder Amanda Rose has agreed to be one of the two keynotes. Damien Basile and Jocelyn Harmon have already committed to attending and pitching unsessions.

The Nonprofit 2.0 Unconference (on Twitter at nonprofit20) will be DC’s only unconference dedicated to the social cause space. Why? Because this sector is special and unique. Using social media to create networked communities and movements is much different than selling products or services.

From volunteers and political action to cultivating donors and partners, social media for causes represents a mission. Often our communications impact society, benefiting Americans and citizens across the globe. Changing society for the better is a special, unique heart-felt activity. Join others like you for this very special unconference committed to doing social good.

The format will meld the best of the BlogPotomac speaker and true Camp Unconference formats. Specifically, NonProfit 2.0 delivers the best of both worlds, offering great keynote sessions, but in an unconference way with no PowerPoint, 15 minute leads, and open questions and dialogue for fantastic conversations. Then from midmorning forward, NonProfit 2.0 shifts into a full-on Unconference.

We are definitely looking for sponsors, too. Sponsorships range from $100 for individuals to $1000 for Rose sponsors. Details are here.

Register today and feel the love!

#BlogPotomac Keynote Beth Kanter (@kanter) on the Future

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Continuing our informal series of interviews with BlogPotomac speakers at the Final BlogPotomac (October 23, at the State Theatre, register today!), our keynote Beth Kanter answered our questions about the future of social media. Beth is the author of Beth’s Blog: How Nonprofits Can Use Social Media , one of the longest running and most popular blogs for nonprofits. A frequent contributor to many nonprofit technology web sites and magazines, Beth has authored chapters in several books, including “Psychology of Facebook Applications,” edited by BJ Fogg, Stanford University and “Managing Technology to Meet Your Mission: A Strategic Guide for Nonprofit Leaders,” edited by NTEN both to be published in 2009.

BP: What social media application or network is really exciting you today and why?

BK: Right now I’m not excited by any one specific social media application or network, but the result of connectedness that these tools provides. I heard Jerry Michalski use the metaphor of the global brain. He mentioned that we were halfway through a transition process where we are renegotiating social contracts and connecting with people in a way that we haven’t before. The benefits innovation and creativity to be sure.

I get excited now that in a couple of clicks that I can go to site like slideshare and see ideas on a topic some of the best thinkers on that subject and recreate my own meaning of it or collectively recreate meaning with my friends. Or that I can send out a question on Twitter and get back lots of new ideas.

The point is that knowledge is now externalized in our global brain of connections with colleagues and other organizations. I think that this connectedness will thread together both individuals and make the boundaries of nonprofit organizations very porous – so that we’ll have colonies of organizations working together on issues/causes versus isolated islands. This melting of boundaries will happen from inside out through individuals working in nonprofits using social networks to
connect across silos and organizations.

BP: In your mind, what’s the biggest barrier facing corporate adoption of social?

BK: A lack of understanding about how the social contracts have changed and what it means. Changing this in organizations that have a decades or centuries of experience doing their work in a particular way is difficult. It means giving up control, being more open to being, well open, and a faster way of working. It means being a learning organization. That transition can be a big barrier. It doesn’t have to be – the right conversations inside about worst case scenarios, adjusting our expectations about failures, and having contingency plans – this can mitigate adoption issues.

BP: What current or future technology do you see impacting social the most over the next five years?

BK: Hmm .. I’m preparing a virtual keynote for the week after I speak at BlogPotomac – and I’d love to know what you and other readers think. With that said, I think real time web and mobile social will have tremendous impacts over the next five years. I think there will also be changes in “humanware” – where we’ll see more and more people who have grown up with the Internet come of age in terms of leadership of their nonprofits – this will an impact.

BP: Do you think social media has positively or negatively impacted society and why?

BK: Well, both. I think there are many benefits that we can take way from the age of connectedness – creativity, innovation, leveraging and much more. Today I was a training with a long-time activist from the 60’s who told me that her organization’s goal is to reach a wider audience and engage them – but can’t do that without being engaged on social networks. Movement buildings need to happen both online and off and social media a big part of that. There is also a dark side that we need to acknowledge – issues of security, privacy, and
identity.

#BlogPotomac Speaker Jane Quigley (@jquig99) Discusses the Future

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Continuing our informal series of interviews with BlogPotomac speakers at the Final BlogPotomac (October 23, at the State Theatre, register today!), crayonista Jane Quigley joins us to discuss the future of social media. She is the lead for the afternoon sessions, and has one of the sharpest minds in the business.

With more than 14 years in the interactive marketing space, Jane has a true excitement for all things Social Media. She has implemented a number of social technology applications and campaigns for her client’s marketing and media schedules, including white-label social networks, corporate blogs, mobile campaigns and more.

BP: What social media application or network is really exciting you today and why?

JQ: I’m really enjoying Posterous. It’s even easier than Tumblr – the original mobile blog. All posts are done over email, the iPhone app or a “Share on Posterous” bookmarklet. It’s really the first mobile blog that is really “set it and forget it” = I never worry about formatting issues.

Also – I have a lot of respect for the Posterous team (Garry Tan and Sachin Agarwal). I’ve had mine for over a year and have been really impressed by the consistent performance and feature updates. The right features at the right time – no feature bloat. And they really use their own product. Not only do they each have a couple of Posterous blogs, which they consistently update, but they comment and favorite other user’s posts each day.

BP: In your mind, what’s the biggest barrier facing corporate adoption of social?

JQ: I don’t think there’s that much of a barrier anymore – most companies see the need to connect more intimately with their customers (and their employees). Where I see the disconnect is that most social media consultants don’t see the Big Picture. It’s not “where does social media fit into my marketing plan” but “how can I infuse conversation into all of our marketing”. 

It’s so much more than a tactical plan – it has to start with strategy.

BP: What current or future technology do you see impacting social the most over the next five years?

JQ:I think it’s whatever is the easiest – that’s why Twitter works over Friendfeed, and Facebook over Orkut and the rest. The KISS-methodology works every time.

Besides that I’m keeping an eye on the localization of social – Foursquare and Gowalla, as well as a Techcrunch50 entry, CitySourced, which looks like a social/mobile Neighborhood Watch.

BP: Do you think social media has positively or negatively impacted society and why?

JQ:I think that the effect has been mostly positive – but I also think that too many people take many posts and reports at face value. Not many people are taking responsibility for fact-checking or researching what is true and what is opinion. Opinion is not fact. We can’t afford to be lazy.