Welcome to the June 2009 edition of the NonProfit Blog Carnival, a monthly showcase of great blog posts for and about nonprofits. The ten articles highlighted here have been chosen to represent a variety of viewpoints and usable information on this month's theme —
If you’re New to Nonprofit Technology, Heather Carpenter offers an overview of major sites and resources in a round-up post at NonProfit Leadership 601, with links sorted into 8 categories:
- Overall great nonprofit technology websites;
- Selecting hardware for your nonprofit;
- Selecting software for your nonprofit;
- Web Presence & Using Technology to Fundraise;
- Nonprofit Technology Events and Conferences;
- Helpful Nonprofit Technology Books and Reports;
- Social Media for your nonprofit; and
- For the true techies.
Any discussion of nonprofit technology is going to include its fair
share of social media topics, of course, and this month’s NonProfit
Blog Carnival submissions are no exception. First up, take a look at 4 Facebook Tips for Nonprofit Success – See What Others are Doing (Frank Barry: NetWits Think Tank),
which combines practical “how to” tips with examples of nonprofit Facebook
pages to study and learn.
Judth Lindenau (Off Stage) is an eloquent advocate of social media for building an association’s community. A 98 Pound AE Weakling? A five month program to association strength through social networking is her response to an association executive friend who threw out this challenge:
All well and good, Lindenau, but I have two questions: where to I find the freaking time to do this, and how do I get started?
Her suggested “game plan” is designed to help folks in small to
mid-sized associations — “those of you with limited resources,
declining memberships, and not enough bake sales to fund outside help”
— get started in developing the personal skills and confidence to use
social media effectively.
Embracing the Social Network (written by Floyd Mann
and submitted by Roger Burks) is a brief reflection on the 2009
Nonprofit Technology Conference in San Francisco, where social media
was a hot topic. Floyd has an interesting theory about why nonprofits
were slower than businesses to jump on the social media bandwagon, and
makes the point that access to social media is not evenly distributed:
it’s important to remember those of your constituents who may not be
Is social media hurting face to face meetings? When Scott Oser posed the question at Acronym
last month, it fired a fair bit of discussion there and on other blogs
— and, somewhat ironically, in social media too! Scott invites your
comments to keep that conversation going and “really make people think.”
And here’s another question to ponder:
Do you have the right balance of online/onlife communications?
"Communities thrive based on trusted relationships between members," writes Angus Parker at WiserEarth Blog,
but online communities often rely too much on 'low touch' channels that
don’t provide much in the way of trust building. "The key is to get the
Social change takes more than social media says Ivan Boothe, writing in response to Joe Solomon’s
round-up at NetSquared on why some “social-media-for-change folks” feel jaded
and unmotivated about social media. Ivan comes at the question from a
background that blends academic study with on-the-ground community
organizing, and his analysis is equally balanced. Does he think the
bubble has burst on social media? Check in at Rootwork to find out!
On the other hand, it can be all
too easy to get distracted by the latest shiny-shiny tech toy. Never underestimate the power of a Word document (at Trina’s Nonprofit Blog by Trina Isakson) is a timely reminder not to overlook the potential of some time-honored tech tools we’ve already got on hand.
Don’t neglect your website, either! Eric H. Doss’s lively summary of NTEN’s Study of Nonprofit Website Suckiness (“Trends in Constituent Satisfaction with Nonprofit Websites”) starts with the bleak bad news that banks and governments make better websites than nonprofits! — then moves on to suggest how nonprofit might fix this. I like this point in particular, for both its humor and its brevity:
If you currently have a website that hasn’t been updated in
years, change this immediately. If a grandmother can’t find your
donate button, you’re doing it wrong.
Finally, grab a cup of coffee and set aside a chunk of quiet time to absorb Doug Jacquier’s Opening address - Connecting Up 09 Sydney, 11 May 2009
— although it’s a very long blog post, you’ll find it well worth
reading. Newly returned from visiting a number of nonprofits and
companies serving nonprofits in the US and Canada, the CEO of Connecting Up Australia
shares a host of insights gained and trends spotted in his travels. The
result is an unusual overview of the state of the nonprofit sector,
providing a rich resource of useful links and a sense of how other
nonprofits are using technology to pursue their missions in a tough
That wraps it up for this edition of the NonProfit Blog Carnival. Thank you to all who submitted their blog posts for consideration!
Next month, the host blog will be Nonprofit Leadership 601, and A Small Change will be hosting in August. If you’d like to submit an entry to a future edition of the Carnival, you can do so using the carnival submission form — or visit http://www.nonprofitmarketingguide.com/blog/nonprofit-blog-carnival/ for more information.