Greenpeace 2.0?

I enthuse to Martin Lloyd in the office about my experience at the South By Southwest conference, and he responds with “so what will you do differently as a result.” 

This is a man schooled in the “verb the noun with the object” school of Getting Things Done management.

Well, where to start? My response was a lame mumble about doing more of some of the things we’ve done in the past — we turned the naming of a ship over to our supporters, we launched a massive friend-get-a-friend appeal with the prize of a voyage on a Greenpeace ship, we got our users to design flash animations and illustrations in an outpouring of creativity, we’ve used the various conventional pressure mechanisms to turn Coke around on climate-killing refrigerants, a reverse boycott to hold Icelandic whaling in check and market pressure to save the Great Bear Rainforest. We had the Cybercenter (Note to self — banish that term, it’s soooooooooo last century) to do that with. At the moment, we’re stuck without a highly functional community tool, so even some of that “been there, done that” stuff is hard to implement, much less new and funky extensions. And many of our campaigns are still focussed on the decision making authorities of governments and intergovernmental organisations, which just isn’t always a match to the places where People are more directly Powerful: consumer markets, brand attacks, many-to-one pressure tactics.

But there are some things I think we can do and would like to do. 

–Turn a part or all of our homepage over to some of our A-list Online Activists and Ocean Defenders to bring a lively refresh rate and new perspectives to www.greenpeace.org (and engage them in the task of site promotion at the same time)

–Get a contest going for a spot on the Antarctic voyage next year — recruit the most Ocean Defenders, and you’re on — in order to drive recruitment up and bring a fun challenge with a really cool prize to our activists

–Auction of that banner Mikey held up on the whale. That was a part of history, and I betcha we could do really, really well with this one if we promote it right.

–Get our activists into our planning process. What an injection of light it would be to go out of shop and kick open the question of how we apply all the passion and will and imagination of our supporter base to winning the most important environmental challenges out there.

–Start pulling Featured Blog RSS feeds and some of the great stuff out there on Treehugger, Grist, WorldChanging into a single resource spot — Greenpeace as aggregator. We can do so much more with RSS than we’re doing now. We built massive RSS capability into the Greenpeace Planet platform, we ought to use it.

–Running with an idea Elaine Hill has been touting of an interactive comic featuring Ocean Defender heroes, in which the storyboard gets determined by the audience.

–The Green Wiki. Somebody at the old Cybercentre suggested this a long time ago, and it’s still a good idea. Take Treehugger, mash it together with Grist and GreenLiving Tips and create an interactive Wiki of ways we can all decrease our envrionmental footprint. Tips ranging the one Ann Novek came up with of keeping a bucket in the shower to catch water for her plants to Make magazine’s step by step plans for making your own wind turbine. 

Well, it’s 7:45 and it’s time to get ready for the day, bundle Doony onto the bike and drop him at school. More on this later: I’m going to open this thread up to folks over at the Ocean Defenders community and see what they have to say.

6 thoughts on “Greenpeace 2.0?”

  1. Hi Brian, No new bright ideas to offer but I did like what I read and the comments received. I do agree with the comment pointing to a potentially even more massive horde of potential supporters out there who might feel a bit out of place at present, but who would enjoy doing more ! (Ciao also to Gillo and Jen !). Bye for now, Simon.

  2. Gee I would LOVE to see pretty much all of this happen.

    Turning over a part of the homepage to supporters editorial/comment would make for fascinating reading. The more voices the better!

    Allowing supporters in on the planning process could also bring much needed ideas and creativity into campaigning and open up the organisation. It could give GP the opportunity to hear, first hand, what it is people can do, and want to do for the Planet.

    I’d definitely be all for this.…okay now I’d better go cos I’m getting all excited. Time for a cup of tea 😉

  3. Hello all,
    Maybe I’m a bit out of the topic, but I really like Gillo’s statement ” How to bring Greenpeace to the people”!

    A friend of mine , a middle-aged 2 childrens mother, said to me yesteday :” I just don’t want to talk , I would like to do something for the environment, but I don’t want to chain myself to trees and climb onto pirate ships, what can I do?
    Well, well, I said , now we at Greenpeace have a golden opportunity for folks like you… we need oldies for our GMO campaign.

    So tomorrow , Greenpeace will have a demonstration outside Swedish Meats office, urging the company to label its products , if the animals have been feed with GMO-feed or not. Now , we are talking about consumer power.

    Lindsey, the GPI campaigner, said we want middleaged people for this campaign, not 18 –years old activists with dreadlocks… haha…

    But it’s really great that middle-aged people can feel they are real activists…

    And I will ask my friend to sign up as an Oceans Defenderas well !

    BTW, we have a Greenpeace activists site as well, where activists can discuss, but sorry Satu, I really feel that a site like this, that mixes all kinds of people from the world is more interesting than a site exclusively for Greenpeace activists…

  4. Ah, Gillo — only someone mind-melded with the interenet would have found this blog-in-beta. I haven’t linked it anywhere because I’m still tweaking it (orange links? darker background?) but I wrote this entry in particular for the Lizardfishes, Ann Noveks, and Bluplanets of the world over at Ocean Defenders to see what bright sparks they might set off as well. Under construction — coming soon! 😉 

    –b

    P.S. If the CIA were half as good as finding information as you are, I’d be very, very worried for the world.

  5. Someone has been publishing a weblog and I missed it… I’m getting old. But let’s go back to the subject.

    Indeed, many good things have been done and others, such as those you mentioned, are a natural next step (very familiar I have to say). On the other hand, bringing people to Greenpeace is just part of it. To the question Martin asked, I’d answer: “What we’ll be doing different is: bring Greenpeace to the people”. But how you do this?

    There are a lot of ways Greenpeace and its activists, employees, etc. can contribute to the Internet community, to those social networks where issues are discussed and advocated.

    And I can see an example right here, right now. You, Brian, are telling your thoughts on this weblog, telling also about Greenpeace in many ways. Great! But now answer my question: why isn’t this linked from any Greenpeace site? 

    Greenpeace and its campaigns invite people to be part of their community. Likewise, people expect Greenpeace to be in THEIR communities.

    Interesting subject. As usual.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.