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History -- Social Actions 2009 Year End Summary

Page history last edited by Christine Egger 14 years, 6 months ago

Shortened URL for this page: http://bit.ly/sa-2009summary



‘Tis the season for a comprehensive report that, in one fell swoop, looks back across an entire year’s worth of activity. This is one such report. Join us in reviewing the community, projects, and conversations that have defined Social Actions' experience in 2009, and feel free to share comments below (feedback, marching orders for 2010, favorite '09 memories)...


Note: For Social Actions by the numbers, please refer to the Social Actions Dashboard (stats and financials).




The activity described below has taken place with -- and within -- a broad community of individuals and organizations. To each of the following, our heartfelt appreciation for your impact on Social Actions' blueprint over the past year. 




Please forgive -- and alert us to -- any unintended omissions!


Project Summary


  • The Social Actions API remains an open and innovative aggregation of opportunities to take action on the causes that people care about most. Social Actions’ definition of action is as broad as ever: donating, volunteering, lending, signing a petition, attending an event, applying for a fulltime job – it’s all included.


    The number and kinds of online platforms that contribute actions to the Social Actions API doubled over the past year, to 60+ action sources. We’re excited to see that continued growth and to see an increasingly global community of participating platforms (GiveIndia, Greater Good South Africa, WiserEarth, UK’s Stop Climate Chaos Coalition being recent examples). Sadly, two action sources -- Ideablob and Fundable -- both closed their doors during this past year, and subsequently were removed from the Social Actions API.  


On the tech side, the Social Actions API has evolved significantly since January, including the addition of a plugin functionality that permits Social Actions to convert any data format to a readable form for the purpose of standardization and aggregation. In the "open data standards" arena, we have seen momentum buillding with much more forward motion anticipated in 2010.


  • Over the past year, we have seen a proliferation of applications and websites that distribute the contents of the Social Actions API, spurred in great part by last spring’s Change the Web Challenge. Bringing together a dozen sponsors, $10,000 in prizes and 100+ developers, the Challenge produced 30+ fully functional open-source applications serving bloggers, iPhone owners, Firefox users, and more. The Challenge also brought together the Social Actions Developers Google Group, which has 100+ members. Entire websites are also making use of the Social Actions API to fuel their action-oriented content including the newly-launched TakePart.com, a program of Participant Media, and environmental news site EarthFirst.


  • In 2009, Social Actions also played a key role in bringing the Social Entrepreneur API to life. Just as the Social Actions API makes it easier to find and share actions that make a difference, the Social Entrepreneur API makes it easier to find and support people that are making a difference. It's the first open database of information about social entrepreneurs who have won fellowships and awards from social enterprise funders. Five programs are currently participating: Civic Ventures, the Draper Richards Foundation, PopTech, the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship, and the Skoll Foundation. The Social Entrepreneur API can be searched here. There will soon be a search engine and applications available on Social Edge. Follow @socentapi on Twitter for more news as the project expands in 2010.


  • In 2009, the Social Actions team also had the opportunity to lend its social media expertise and support to a number of organizations and programs, providing consulting services of one kind or another to the following groups:




Online and off, Social Actions participated in a broad range of conversations related to the fields of philanthropy, open data, nonprofit practices, and internet technologies. Here are just a few highlights:







2009 brought amazing opportunities to connect with others around building a fully-formed philanthropic web that seamlessly connects individuals with actions they can take to make a difference on the causes they care about. We had a chance to share that vision with fellow attendees and audiences at several gatherings, including:



Vision and Mission


Defining Social Actions’ vision and mission has been a subject of our conversations as well. We’ve been drawing from Hildy Gottlieb and others to help communicate those core principles in clear and compelling language. Check out Social Actions' new About Us page and these wiki pages for a glimpse of that progress.



Don't hesitate to leave comments or questions below. Many thanks for diving into this year-end summary with us, and we look forward to an equally amazing 2010!


Comments (3)

Deron J Triff said

at 5:11 pm on Dec 18, 2009


This brilliant not only because of what you've accomplished with scarce resource, but because it is so open and transparent. Honestly, I cannot recall (ever) receiving such thorough and open assessment of progress from any organization in our space. While clearly there is much room for growth, your document shows how committed you are to serving the larger community. Thank you from the team here at Changents (Deron, Alex, Eleanor, Jennifer, Stephen and Mark). We dig the opportunity to post Change Agent stories on Social Actions (our latest http://tiny.cc/McMmW ) and wish everyone in the community a great 2010.

Deron Triff
CEO, Changents.com

Hildy Gottlieb said

at 2:34 pm on Dec 19, 2009

Christine & Peter:
So excited to be part of all this. Can't wait to see what we all accomplish together!

Christine Egger said

at 3:21 pm on Dec 19, 2009

Deron, thank you so much for these kind words. We see much room for growth, too -- one of the many reasons to look forward to 2010 and beyond. With continued best wishes to the Changent team~

Hildy, can't tell you how much your lead-by-example teachings have impacted our team this year. Looking forward to accomplishing great things together as the future unfolds :)

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