Facebook Co-Founder Launches Social Activism Network

By Cindy Waxer November 30, 2010

Think of it as Facebook for Good Samaritans: Jumo has launched in beta, “a social network connecting individuals and organizations who want to change the world,” reads the site.

Founded in February, Jumo is the brainchild of Chris Hughes, co-founder of Facebook and director of online organizing for Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential campaign. Relying on social networking technologies, Jumo promises to let users “find, follow and support those working toward solutions on the ground in their community and in regions across the globe.” So far, Jumo boasts 3,500 charitable organizations and many more are likely to follow.

Here’s how Jumo works: users simply find the issues and organizations they wish to support (ie. Freedom to Marry, Partners in Health, Creative Capital), follow the latest news and updates, and then support their causes with time, money and skills.

“I’m firmly of the mind that we have to foster relationships between everyday people and issues and organizations that are personally relevant to them,” wrote Hughes on his personal blog. “It’s now possible to provide each person with information and opportunities for meaningful action tailored specifically to who they are. If Jumo can make sure that happens and offer opportunities for meaningful engagement alongside it, I think we can speed the pace of global change.”

Jumo isn’t the first project to tackle a good cause using social networking technology. Singing sensation Alicia Keys has convinced fellow superstars Lady Gaga, Justin Timberlake, User and Jennifer Hudson to abstain from Facebook and Twitter in order to draw attention to World AIDS Day this week. The celebrities promise they will return to the etherworld once they raise $1 million for Keys' charity, Keep A Child Alive.

Nevertheless, the jury is out on what impact social networking actually has on fundraising efforts. According to a Blackbaud survey, of the $263 billion that Americans give to charity each year, a mere 5.7 percent is given online. Sadly, a mere one percent of that stems from social media contributions.

Edited by Tammy Wolf

TechZone360 Contributing Editor

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