I wanted to highlight a couple of observations that Lucy Bernholz makes in her analysis of yesterday’s discussion about philanthropy in Second Life by the MacArthur Foundation. She points out why this was such a groundbreaking event and suggests a compelling new metaphor for philanthropy:
Imagine if philanthropy sought to be an "empowering platform for individuals (and organizations) to make change."
to really be a platform for individuals, where the participants decide how to do things, where the successful organizations are only those that help residents succeed, where feedback loops are tight, fast, and respected – these are new ways for philanthropic institutions to act. A good start, a conversation with anyone who could get there, was made today. I hope the Foundation and its partners are successful in achieving their goals: listening to new voices, providing means for isolated groups to get together, offering support for creative solutions "in world" that might transfer to "real life." The conversation started – lets hope (and help) it continues.
What is interesting to me about this concept of a platform for change that is very different from say – campaigns on social networking sites like Facebook or the use of widgets and charity badges on blogs for personal fundraising campaigns — is that while Virtual Worlds are empowering individuals — we are empowering collective action.
Here’s an update on the round up of coverage:
- Event Announcement from Jonathan Fanton, President
- Doing the Impossible in Virtual Worlds by Doug Thomas from USC Center on Public Diplomacy
- A report about the event from Hastac
- Nonprofits in Second Life Blog coverage
- Lucy Bernholz captured the video stream from blog.tv and offered an analysis here
- Rik Riel’s multimedia coverage the event
- Virtual to Reality Blog
- Second Thoughts blog, "We Need a New Kind of Philanthropy"
- Britt Bravo’s Second Life Do-Gooders
- New York Times article
Written by: kanter