Let’s for just one moment concentrate on something that while connected to social media is about something much bigger. Hopefully we are able to do that without being prompted but for today we’ll give you just a little push ;-). Mashable tells us that over the weekend, Drew Olanoff, who is fighting Hodgkins lymphoma, is using a piece of social media ‘capital’ to raise money in the fight against cancer.
As Drew put it himself at his blog
I have a pretty cool Twitter name – one that I got early early on. I love Twitter. Twitter the company, and the platform have been very good to me and to people I care about deeply.
My “digital identity” – the cool party trick where you say “Hey I’m @Drew on Twitter” and people say “Just Drew? Whoah”. Sure, it’s just a Twitter name, but it’s pretty sweet you have to admit.
My mom and dad are the only ones in the world who still call me Andrew. So Drew is who I am.
So what is he doing with this identity? He is auctioning it off to raise money for the LIVESTRONG who has been supporting Drew while he fights this battle. Personally, I have a father-in-law with lung cancer and have watched people dear to me suffer and die from various forms of cancer. Having said that I think that what Drew is doing is spot on and helping us understand the power of social media even more fully.
So what make this story even cooler is that Drew Carey (@DrewfromTV) has responded and is saying that he will pay up to $100,000 for the name if his current Twitter account exceeds 100,000 followers. He has already pledged to pay $25k so he is turning this into a win / win that is only possible through today’s social media reach.
So for today, think about social media as a way for change and for the greater good rather than just for marketing. There are many other efforts under way that you can uncover including Mark Herzlich’s efforts to raise awareness of Ewing’s Sarcoma through the college football community. Check out his fan page on Facebook which is being managed by some fans who are looking to help.
So for all the bad news that we encounter everyday between wars , the economy, illness and more let’s remember that this social media thing is about people. Real people with real lives and real issues. Let’s not lose sight of that as we go about our business.