Thursday, December 15, 2011
Friends, Humans, Social Media Folks Lend Me Your Ears: The Payoff
Last week myself and others started a ball rolling on Twitter to aid a small but powerful radio station in Campbell River Canada where 99.7 FM The River’s morning DJ, Dave Reynolds spearheaded a food drive for their local food bank. A great local cause right? Everyone gets together to drop of food in a truck he’s residing in until all the food donated forces him out. Fun neighborly idea, right? He also wanted to get 700 turkeys donated to give to families that need a Christmas dinner. Wonderful thing for a small community, yes?
Now, take the word community, drop the word “local” and just run with “community”. You see, Dave had a bunch of friends on Twitter that believed in his cause. We asked, “What do we do for Dave and his radio station’s noble cause?” So we started Tweeting about it. We attached phone numbers to it. We added names of people to speak to at the local supermarket that had discounted turkeys for this event. The Save On Food store added people to the phone to keep up with calls coming in from across the globe. Next thing you know the truck overflows, the turkeys are accumulating and they need another truck…then another…And then the food bank donation start rolling in…
One Million Dollars later.
One thousand turkeys later.
One million eyes on Twitter later.
One idea, one dream later and 11 days later enough food was gathered to provide and feed 9,000 families!
The meaning of giving, the meaning of the holidays and the meaning of what it IS to be human came through that thing we call social media. The “social” in that definition earned its meaning.
One more note on the power of the medium. I was sitting at my desk just now and a card is dropped of from the mail person. Excited to see who would have thought to send me a REAL Christmas card rather than an email blasted to everyone in their mailbox thrilled me. So, thank you Steve Curtin!
When I opened it my pulse increased. It was unexpected and real and authentic! It was from a friend I made on Twitter and had the pleasure of sharing conversation with and he was nice enough to send me a card. Not a Tweet. Not a Facebook “poke”. A card in his own handwriting.
Sometimes something we look at as a generally cold and really impersonal way of communicating can surprise you. But it’s what we make of it. It’s how we use it. It’s sometimes how we can stay human.
Create and redefine the world around you and the human race will make it safely over the finish line with a little help from each other.
And So It Goes and Happy Holidays!