Do The Right Thing: This social network gets users to collectively rate the performance of large corporations, with the goal of getting companies and their executives talking to consumers about sustainability issues. This is one of the first sites to use a Digg like rating system on corporate social and environmental performance.
Zerofootprint.net: This is a nonprofit social network with a sustainable business model. This Toronto-based company creates branded carbon calculators and community sites for cities and large organizations.
BeGreenNow: This site was created by Austin, Texas-based clean-electricity provider Green Mountain Energy. It is a great example of how companies are using green community sites to market themselves. It’s includes a carbon calculator and ways to offset carbon emissions.
BigCarrot: This site offers cash prizes to help address the world’s problems, they offer prizes for innovations (such as the Auto X Prize and Virgin Earth Challenge) into a distributed community project. Individuals can pool their resources into a cash offering, which they can then use in the community or to build a language-teaching web app. The site makes money from a combination of a 5 percent fee for transactions, advertising on its website and investing the cash prizes in “low-risk financial” tools.
Carbonrally: This social network seeks to capitalize on the desire to compete. Carbonrally uses the draw of being on a team to help members focus their efforts on challenges that reduce carbon emissions. This site is great for corporate customers because it helps them organize company carbon programs. Corporations could also be Carbonrally’s real moneymaker, as businesses could be willing to pay for more premium subscription services.
WorldCoolers.org: This site is a browser add-on made by marketing company Collactive that alerts you to news and announcements on global warming. The site also has a section for online campaigns and a blog. Their desktop app is designed to give people concerned about the climate crisis the means to connect with one another, organize their efforts, and reach out to the larger community.
2People.org: This green social media site gets its name from the motto: “How do you move a nation: 2 People.” This site is focused on the important work of trying to organize people around climate policy.
Celsias.com: Celsias started as a blog and evolved to include a social network community site for climate change-fighting advocates. Celsias organizes its community around “Projects” that users can create and join.
Care2.com: Launched in 2008, Care2 is one of the oldest green social networking sites. With millions of members this is one of the more popular social networking sites.
Change.org: This social network addresses a variety of philanthropic actions but highlights several green projects like “End Dependency on Oil,” and “Stop Global Warming,” and features “take action” and “donate” buttons directly under the appropriate news stream. We also like the “network graph” which lets users take a look at all their recruits and contacts around the cause they are fighting for.
MakeMeSustainable: As the name suggests, this site offers ways of reducing your carbon footprint. The “Manager” section monitors your carbon emissions over time via “actions” you’ve taken like. Then there’s a social-networking component where you can join user-created groups and see who’s involved in the site in your local area. This site is well designed, with easy-to-read charts and Google maps of other MakeMeSustainable members nearby.
© 2011, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.
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