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News from the Case Foundation and what people are talking about this week in the world of giving, tech and everything in between.
Foursquare gets charitableEarlier this week, popular mobile game, Foursquare teamed up with Pepsi to support CampInteractive, an organization that aims to inspire inner-city youth through technology. As social media blog Mashable reports, for New York based users, "every point they add to the leaderboard through December 13 equates to four cents for CampInteractive." The CEO of Foursquare also tells Mashable that plans for using the game to raise funds for charity have been an interest of theirs for some time. Foursquare posted more about this initiative on their blog. In a Fast Company post, writer Kit Eaton notes:
The most promising thing about this move: The potential implications for the future of charitable donations. For years charities have been trying to get more money out of the pockets of the generous public by co-opting new technology into their cause.
Nathaniel Whittemore of Change.org's Social Entrepreneurship blog also reports on the initiative, commenting that: "With their upcoming 'Project Refresh,' Pepsi is angling to make 2010 the year that Pepsi rebuilds it's brand around collaborative good." And on a related note, our friends at GOOD announced this week that Pepsi has asked them to partner to help "curate, execute and create content around their bold new Refresh campaign—a $20 million grant-giving effort that will support ideas big and small that are designed to create positive social change," according to a blog post from Craig Shapiro at GOOD.
Social Citizens roundupIt was a busy week over at the Social Citizens blog. In a post up today, Kari Saratovsky highlights Operation Free, a coalition of veterans from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, made up largely of millenials, who are focused on expanding the debate over energy legislation and climate change. Kristin Ivie highlights the great opportunity for students to attend the Clinton Global Initiative's CGI U, a program designed to engage the next generation of leaders on college campuses worldwide. In a post earlier this week, Kari discusses the recent Convio report on the anticipated increase in online giving this holiday season and breaks down the data to evaluate behavior of Millenial donors.
Google Labs experiments with new news formatOn the tech/online front, Google Labs rolled out this week a new feature experiment for news gathering called "Living Stories," a new approach to presenting news online by topic and developed in partnership with the New York Times and Washington Post. According to a New York Times piece about the Living Stories experiment:
Living stories is a much-enhanced version of what some newspaper Web sites already do by grouping material by subject matter. In the case of The Times, the paper’s Web site has thousands of 'topic pages.' But those efforts have not yielded heavy reader traffic or much advertising.
Much of the coverage about the new Living Stories feature noted the relevance of this experiment in light of the highly-publicized newspaper industry's beef with Google News. As the Washington Post explains:
The initiative comes as some media executives, led by Rupert Murdoch, are blaming Google for grabbing their content without charge when newspapers are struggling to generate enough revenue to support their newsrooms.
In his review of the new feature, Danny Sullivan of Search Engine Land notes that the feature is "very experimental, definitely," and that it is "not a replacement for wherever you currently go for a general news update," and the L.A. Times explains that the new feature is designed to not only allow people to see stories grouped by topic on Google's site, but the idea is to have publishers leverage Living Stories on their own sites. Computerworld notes that Google's desire is to ultimately open the feature to "all publishers and sit on any of their Web sites to highlight hot news stories and new information about anything from a climate summit to the Tiger Woods car accident." Not all of the reviews of the new feature are positive, however, with David Coursey of PC World's Tech Insider blog criticizing the feature for being out of date, noting: "If that is 'living,' I'll go back regular 'dead' Google News, which is remade every few minutes." What do you think of the Living Stories experiment?