Certainly not enough for a post individually, but collectively… perhaps.
Here’s a dumpload of meh I need to get out of my system.
The word is usually considered a pejorative term that describes “feel-good” measures, in support of an issue or social cause, that have little or no practical effect other than to make the person doing it take satisfaction from the feeling they have contributed.
Social media trends come and goes in waves. Remember FollowFridays on Twitter? TBT? FistBumpFridays? Recently, we all went through an incredible event, the Ice Bucket Challenge. With it’s 1:3 ratio, it grew exponentially. They raised a bunch of money from it and that’s a good thing!
Next up was (or is) the “Thankful Challenge”. No money to be donated, just list three things your thankful for and tag three others. Tons of exponential growth and plenty of feel good happening there too.
I don’t know if you noticed but one of the similarities of both is that people start out by saying, “I’d like to thank Joe Smith for nominating me to this challenge“.
Here’s the thing. You didn’t have to wait to be nominated. Nobody needs to tag you. If it’s something you want to get started on – start! Seriously, would anybody complain if someone did an IceBucket Challenge without first being nominated?
A local animal rescue group (NORSLED) that I support has a once a year fundraiser. I’ve been politely asking for donations. I’ve used cute puppy pictures and cute puppy videos to grab attention. After reading aI started sharing the real pictures and the real stories of why I would like people to donate.
To date I’ve managed to raise $628 (from 8 people)
Of the eight people who donated, most donated because they were gosh darn nice. Some donated because I did work for them in return for their donation. No matter which way it comes in I’m happy and grateful (or should I say ‘Thankful’?)
But I’m wondering why I am failing at this.
My original goal was $3,000. Realistically I’d like to raise a boatload more. If you are into the numbers, with 4,000 friends on Facebook, another 2,000 following, 14,000+ on Twitter, a zillion Linkedin Peeps and so on… after a month of effort, with reach numbers like this, I should have more than 8 donations.
The answer to why I’m failing is that I’m not engaging with those kazillion connections. I’ve written enough about that (hey, I even have an ongoing series) but I think there’s more to it than that.
Are we all a little burned out on this donation thing? I know I am. How long can you go on social media before you see the next person asking for something? If I’m right this might be an awful year for every other 501(c)3 that isn’t ALS? What do you think?
No matter what I’ll still keep plugging for donations because it’s something I see a value in. When I get done with this event, I’ll be raising money to fight rare cancers with Cycle for Survival – something that also is important in my life.
I consider myself to be a smart guy. I pay attention to what’s happening in my social streams. With every upcoming conference we witness a number of our friends suddenly become ‘cheerleaders’ for that conference. They do so hopefully because they enjoy the conference. They also do so because they are getting compensated. Hey, I would sell my sole for a conference I believed in for a small amount of compensation too. Of course they don’t ‘say’ they are being compensated, heck they don’t even drop a small hint. They’re job is to pump up the volume and enthusiasm for the event and as Cheerleaders they do a great job of it.
It’s nothing new in the world. My Doctor prescribes drugs from big pharmaceuticals that ‘fund’ his clinical trials. My mechanic suggests to use this spark plug over that spark plug perhaps because he gets a bigger margin from his distributor. We’ve come to expect this, right?
Lately I’ve been watching people share articles to and about companies they actually work for – but they share them as ‘friends’. “My friends over at ABC Widgets…” is just fine when it’s not a company that actually has you on the payroll.
Is the whole idea of Transparency dead?
Speaking of sharing…
I’ve spoken before about sharing stolen videos but it seems we just don’t care. The tactic started out as a way for a sleeezeball to get more traction on his Facebook Page. Find a popular video on YouTube, download it with some screen capture software, then upload it to Facebook as if it was your own and viola! People will be sharing your content.
Except it’s not your content and you didn’t have the legal right to download it.
Now, it’s not just the slimy types that are doing it but BIG INSTITUTIONS in the content creation business. These are entities that aggressively protect their own copyright content. These are organizations that have big legal departments. Most importantly, these are businesses that should know better.
As a content creator I have to ask, how is this OK? This station even references that “the video is getting a lot of attention on YouTube“. If it made them smile, why didn’t they just share the video on Facebook? Why go through all the trouble of downloading and uploading it to your page? It’s not making me smile, it’s making me cry. Here’s the video on their Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=856379534381801 (sorry, they don’t deserve a real link)
I don’t pirate movies from the internet, all of the software on my computer I bought, and as a blogger I never plagiarize another blogger’s work. As an citizen of the internet, I think I’m doing the right thing. We, as Facebook users, come across items in the stream and share them based on their content. I get that. Generally we don’t stop to think about how that content got there in the first place. Should we? I think we should have some onus in the matter.
Some people find these cute Husky videos and share with me directly. So far I have refrained from lashing out. Education and understanding is the key. It’s hard to blame my uneducated friends. But I won’t comment and it won’t get a like from me. I have to take a stand somewhere don’t I? #justsayin
SIDENOTE: the cute puppy pictures I mentioned I was sharing were stolen from the internet. I even admitted that when I was sharing them. CLICK HERE Sadly, it didn’t increase my donations. 🙁
Next time I promise I’ll share three things of wonderful social media goodness.