The Art of Hosting

A question raised by Heather Plett:

I've been thinking a lot about social media this week and wonder whether anyone knows of some good discussions going on about social media as a tool for community organizing. After being nudged by some friends to help them develop a presence online, I just released an e-book on my website called "Social Media: a beginner's guide to meaningful and mindful engagement". Now, after watching what's been going on with Occupy Wallstreet, I've been contemplating whether I should add a section (or follow-up piece) on community organization (or at least some links to resources, discussions, etc.) online. I'm far from an expert on social media, but I do find it an intriguing query and I know that it's something we need to pay attention to in these shifting times.

Is anyone talking about this?

Here's a link to one of the pieces I was reading about Occupy Wallstreet...

Heather Plett

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We use social media for inclusive community building and civic engagement in neighborhoods:

Lots of links from: - example forums

Also, check out the Locals Online community of practice:

P.S. We are organizing the CityCamp Minnesota unconference - and serve as the fiscal agent for this global network of local gov/community 2.0 unconferences.

Steven Clift


I am right now getting to know more about community tools and starting to implement in two projects. It is quite new and under constant development but it is free to use. I just love the possibility of maps and text in combination and they have managed to make it. The people are also really willing to help if you have questions...

Check it out

What is Community Tools software?

Community Tools (CT) is web-based software for managing activities and communication within location-based communities. Community can be a neighborhood, apartment association, football team, local hunting league, neighborhood watch, etc.

Geotagged information

Since CT aims to improve location-based communication, we emphasize on tying information with geographic data — events, news, announcements, institutions, etc. are displayed both in text form as well as on map.

About the team

Community Tools creation was driven by the need to effectively manage communication and information flow in a local community. Even if people are willing to contribute and get involved, some really important communication issues occured. Organizing large groups of people involves fast and accurate information change. There was a lack of matching solutions for our specific needs.

Not less important is to get in touch with other communities to create a network to share ideas, get inspiration and avoid mistakes others have gotten stuck into.

We believe that open source, creative commons, open data and user generated content are the key terms in future. So, these are the values we carry in mind. Our team is a mix of community leaders, urban students, information architects, software developers and designers.

Evelin Tamm

more resources: is a great archive of material. -Kipp Efinger

and still more, send by Steven Clift:

If you are looking more for digital activism/e-advocacy resources of a more political nature versus local community organizing/building, here are some other links:
E-Campaigning Forum:
Meta-Activism Blog
And lots more online groups:
If you are still interested in the local, also check out:

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