Turning Words into Deeds: A response to Knight Foundation’s 21st Century News Challenge

What makes for a transformative media moment: a moment when an individual reads, watches or hears a news story and is galvanized to take action on an issue? Social Signal hopes to offer a new answer to that question with the WIDget, a tool that will turn words into deeds by marrying web-savvy media outlets with the latest nonprofit volunteer and donation opportunities.

The WIDget is our proposal to the Knight Foundation’s 21st Century News Challenge, a call for “new ways to understand news and act on it…new ways for people to communicate interactively to better understand one another…[and] new ways for people to use information.”

The WIDget answers this challenge by by using the latest Internet tools to match issue-oriented journalism with opportunities for concrete citizen engagement. Through a Words Into Deeds widget (WIDget), online media outlets, blogs, audio and video sites will be able to complement any issue-specific story with a set of related volunteer and donation opportunities. You can read about the WIDget and take a look at a mock-up in our draft proposal for the Knight Foundation (PDF).

We’ve made a conscious decision to share our proposal before the December 31 submission deadline because we think that a community converesation about the proposal can help make it stronger, and help us find the best partners to support the WIDget’s development. You can contribute to this process if you are:

  • A nonprofit organization that maintains organizational databases: contact Social Signal to add your database to the list of databases that will be tapped by the WIDget.
  • A nonprofit organization that wants to promote its donor or volunteer opportunities: contact Social Signal to add your organization’s name to the list of nonprofits who want to appear in WIDget listings.
  • A media outlet or blogger: contact Social Signal to add your outlet or blog site to the list of outlets that would deploy the WIDget to offer volunteer and donor opportunities to your readers.
  • An interested observer: share your thoughts about the WIDget by commenting on this blog post or by emailing Social Signal with your comments.

To contact Social Signal, please e-mail widget@socialsignal.com.

Thanks in advance for any comments or suggested partnerships, and we’ll keep you posted on how our proposal evolves.

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WordsIntoDeeds-30Nov06.pdf 354.07 KB

Unexpected phrases

I’m shopping for a baby in Second Life and came across this gem: “We will not replace babies that have been lost, stolen or had their contents removed.” posted by Consultini Paperdoll on The Avenues using a blogHUD : [blogHUD...

Blogging from Second Life

My newfound addiction to Second Life (http://www.secondlife.com) is really cutting into my blogging time.

PODCAST: From Org Charts to Sitemaps: How organizational structure affects web strategy and implementation

Does your organizational structure support web innovation or inhibit it? Learn how to make the most of your own team's structure from the web strategists at two very different nonprofits: Corrie Frasier,  Online Communications Manager for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Jed Miller, Director of Internet programs for the American Civil Liberties Union. In this, the first edition of the Social Signal podcast, Corrie and Jed talk about everything from how to get senior buy-in to your web strategy, to how interdepartmental cooperation helped the ACLU respond effectively to NSA spying.

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Religious views of the body & soul after death

For all of us thinking about death and grieving, the Body Worlds exhibit is holding an interesting event this weekend:

Religious Views of the Human Body and Soul After Death
In conjunction with the InterSpiritual Centre of Vancouver (www.interspiritualcentre.org)
Saturday, November 4, 2006
7:00pm — 7:50pm
Science Theatre (seating is limited)

CBC Radio host Priya Ramu will host a discussion among representatives of Vancouver’s Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Muslim, Jewish and Sikh religious communities regarding their perspectives on death and dying, the body and soul, funeral practices and the public display of human bodies for educational purposes. The remainder of the program will provide an opportunity for the audience to address questions to our panel.

This event is FREE with purchase of a BODY WORLDS 3 ticket for that evening. Seating is limited and is available on a ‘first come/first served’ basis.

Orai Fujikawa Sensei: Bishop of the Hongwanji Buddhist Temples in Canada
Pandit Prameya Chaitanya: Priest of the Shree Mahalakshmi Hindu Temple
Giani Jasbir Singh Ji: Priest of the Akali Singh Gurdwara Sahib
Dr. Amr Hafez: Islamic Society of BC
Tara Bentall King: Vancouver School of Theology
Rabbi David Mivasair: Ahavat Olam Synagogue