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VoteTO: The real-time election that never was

A snapshot of voteTO tweets on Twitter.

If you've ever been blindfolded, spun around a few times and told to take a whack at a piñata, you'll understand the slapdash way Toronto's mayoral candidates have attempted to use online tools to engage voters. Social media, having only recently taken the proverbial clothes off the back of politics, calls for elections to happen in real time.



With friends like Facebook: Should we 'like' the social network's new features?

Photo: SimonQ錫濛譙/flickr

Last week Facebook, once again, tried to get everyone to accept its friend request. At its developer-centric F8 conference, the social network announced App Links and Anonymous Login.

App Links allows mobile apps to easily exchange information without having to go through a web browser. Anonymous Login allows you to use your Facebook credentials to log into a Facebook-friendly site without giving up your data to that site.

But, should those new features convince us that the network is our new BFF? Well, as with many relationships on Facebook, it's complicated.

Social Network Facebook: The New Home of the Bourgeois Individual

Social Network Facebook: The New Home of the Bourgeois Individual

"...the user as a public persona: the really existing caricature of the bourgeois competitor and market participant.."


Social movements in the age of information

Photo: Steve Rhodes/Flickr

Contemporary social movements are characterized not only by their diverse commitments to building an emancipatory, egalitarian society but also by their innovative network composition. Both the form and content of the newest insurgencies embody essential aspects of our age of information. Their novelty opens up new possibilities for presence, mobilization and social change.

Exploiting the mainstream media

Mainstream media is everywhere yet misses the message.

In our information driven world, news media is everywhere. Because of the 24 hour news cycle reporters are always looking for a story, a new angle on an issue or something to investigate. Activists have more power than ever to influence the media and sound the alarm on injustice.

For inspiration, check out this case study of a successful grassroots media campaign completed by the TTC Riders Sardine Awards.

This guide will go over:

Crafting a media message

Getting the word out

When they come to you

Confronting media


| September 28, 2011
Freedom Box
| August 18, 2011


Twestival, or Twitter Festival, is a unique initiative that attempts to unite digital life with that of the real. On this day, thousands of individuals from online Twitter communities unite offline to raise money and awareness for a choice cause.

Essentially, Twestival works by using the platform of pre-existing social media -- primarily through Twitter but also via Facebook -- to raise awareness for social causes. Twestival’s aim, according to the event’s organizers, is to harness the power of social media for social good.

 In September 2008, the groundwork for Twestival was established.


Crisis mapping

Crisis mapping utilizes mobile technology, geospatial platforms, visual models, and statistics to spur rapid early warning responses in a range of disaster scenarios. As a tool, crisis mapping has enabled those on the ground to better plan and allocate resources in humanitarian emergencies.

Essentially, crisis mappers are engaged in the live mapping of evolving catastrophes. Interestingly, crisis mapping technology has been leveraged in numerous cases including political, social, and environmental crises.




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