One of the interesting characteristics of social media tools (things like blogs, podcasts and other information sharing technologies) is that they tend to be free or almost free to the users. What that means is that networks like Project-Agape (see yesterday’s post) may present an almost costless platform for foundations to communicate their philanthropic knowledge to the world at large and by doing so attract more dollars to the projects that they care about.
I don’t know much about Project-Agape yet. Their model may or may not prove to be useful for philanthropic knowledge sharing. But in response to my post yesterday where I wondered if foundations could have a presence on the network, they emailed me the following:
This is indeed part of our model. Since we support all registered 501c3’s, any individual user will be able to search for a foundation & start a cause for it, recruiting members and raising money for the organization. Foundations in turn can leverage the platform by setting up profile pages, which inform our community about who they are and what they do, and then encourage their own donors to start causes on their behalf. As mentioned we’re now in testing, with a diverse but relatively limited number of nonprofit organizations participating. We certainly hope foundations will participate, and they can contact me for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Given Project-Agape founder Sean Parker’s involvement in the creation of Napster, Plaxo and Facebook, it seems he knows what it takes to form successful social networks. But even if the project fails or doesn’t meet the needs of foundations, social media tools present a wonderful (and ultra low cost) opportunity for foundations to communicate philanthropic knowledge, become true thought leaders and leverage the massive giving power of everyday people.