Personal Democracy Plus Our premium content network. LEARN MORE You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

Upcoming: PD+ Call on Women's Online Health Activism and Planned Parenthood

BY Micah L. Sifry | Tuesday, March 27 2012

I'm looking forward to this Thursday's Personal Democracy Plus call with Heather Holdridge and Deanna Zandt for a bunch of reasons. Obviously, the "internet wave" that is lifting all kinds of social activism boats is playing a big role in the politics of women's health care these days. As one of the country's biggest providers of health services to women and families, Planned Parenthood is inevitably in the middle of all of this. A year ago, when pressure in Congress to cut off federal funding to the organization started to hit a boiling point, Planned Parenthood saw a surge in membership, with more than a million new supporters joining. And more recently, in the four-day media firestorm that erupted when the Komen Foundation announced that it was withdrawing its funding of PP's breast-cancer program, the online arena was central to the pushback.

Holdridge and Zandt are ideal people to talk to for insight about these issues; Holdridge is PP's digital director, and comes to that position with years of experience advising and guiding other nonprofit groups navigating the online environment. And Zandt is a quintessential net-activist, who has been steadily perfecting a variety of creative ways of rallying and galvanizing the grassroots around a range of issues. In the most recent instance, the Komen controversy, Holdridge was on the inside at PP helping manage the organization's online response, while Zandt was on the outside, spreading a supportive message using a Tumblr called "Planned Parenthood Saved Me."

On the call, I'm aiming to get into three related areas:
1. How PP understands and navigates its online environment;
2. How grassroots ('free agent'?) activism around women's health issues is growing and using the social web; and
3. To what extent the social media toolkit (everything from Tumblr testimonial sites to Change.org petitions to Twitter hashtags, Facebook walls and viral videos) is becoming understood by organizers and a methodology is arising for how to move rapidly around media moments.

To join in, you should RSVP here to get the call details. It's Thursday at 1pm ET.

News Briefs

RSS Feed tuesday >

With Vision of Internet Magna Carta, Web We Want Campaign Aims To Go Beyond Protest Mode

On Saturday, Tim Berners-Lee reiterated his call for an Internet Magna Carta to ensure the independence and openness of the World Wide Web and protection of user privacy. His remarks were part of the opening of the Web We Want Festival at the Southbank Centre in London, which the Web We Want campaign envisioned as only the start of a year long international process underlying his call to formulate concrete visions for the open web of the future, going beyond protests and the usual advocacy groups. GO

First POST: Lifestyles

Google's CEO on "work-life balance"; how CloudFlare just doubled the size of the encrypted web; Dems like Twitter; Reps like Pinterest; and much, much more. GO

monday >

First POST: Showdown

How demonstrators in Hong Kong are using mobile tech to route around government control; will the news penetrate mainland China?; dueling spin from Dems and Reps on which party's tech efforts will matter more in November; and much, much more. GO

friday >

Pirate MEP Crowdsources Internet Policy Questions For Designated EU Commissioners

While the Pirate Party within Germany was facing internal disputes over the last week, the German Pirate Party member in the European Parliament, Julia Reda, is seeking to make the European Commission appointment process more transparent by crowdsourcing questions for the designated Commissioner for Digital Economy & Society and the designated Vice President for the Digital Single Market. GO

First POST: Dogfood

What ethical social networking might look like; can the iPhone promise more privacy?; how Obama did on transparency; and much, much more. GO

thursday >

First POST: Sucks

How the FCC can't communicate; tech is getting more political; Facebook might see a lawsuit for its mood manipulation experiment; and much, much more. GO

wednesday >

First POST: Wartime

A bizarre online marketing effort targets actress Emma Watson; why the news media needs to defend the privacy of its online readers; Chicago's playbook for civic user testing; and much, much more. GO

More