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The PdF Network is PdF's premium membership service, designed to give those working in government, politics, advocacy, and many more sectors, unparalleled access to industry experts and resources. As we work to upgrade the network, launching at the end of spring, we're offering the PdF Network's bi-monthly call series to the public at no cost.

Yesterday, PdF (the publisher of this website) kicked off it's spring (though it still feels like winter) schedule of free PdF Network Calls (see this previous post to learn more).

The call, titled: "The Future of Social Networking for Non-Profits," featured an interview of's CEO, Ben Rattray, by techPresident's Associate Editor (and all around all star), Nancy Scola. The full call, as a podcast, is available to stream and download at the bottom of this post.

Ben didn't hold anything back in discussing's past failures and current successes, waxing philosophic on online activism and breaking down's secret sauce. Call participants, from organizations ranging from Human Rights First to the Government of San Juan, heard Ben present several case studies from the campaign vault, including a recent example of how disenfranchised women in South Africa's townships organized to get "corrective rape" of lesbians in South Africa deemed a hate crime (more information here).

Of particular interest to the many non-profit and activist organization representatives on the call was how is now framing their work with partners who are running campaigns on the site, focusing on developing strategy, targeting media, and working towards a concrete "win" in the form of a change in the world around them, as @mgyerman tweeted.

Also discussed:
-Why he thinks that the high-profile new social network Jumo needs to change to succeed.
-What Facebook's good for that Twitter's not (and why a tweet from Ashton Kutcher is not be as powerful as you might think).
-Why the launch of's blogging network convinced him that the path success was in doing one thing very well -- which included giving up on fundraising.
-What he's learned about online activism that makes him believe that the online petition, done right, can be a powerful vehicle for creating tangible social and political change.

This was just the first call in the spring series, and we're excited that all of these calls are free and open to the public. The goal is to expose those working in government, politics, advocacy, and many more sectors, unparalleled access to industry experts and resources, and the upcoming calls promise to deliver just that!

Next PdF Network Calls:

February 17, 1pm-2pm EST
Maptivism: How to Crowdsource Political Action

Web and mobile technology are enabling activists and organizers to use free, open-source platforms to crowdsource action and respond to political and humanitarian crises in new ways. Patrick Meier is the Director of Crisis Mapping at Ushahidi and the co-founder of the International Network of Crisis Mappers.

March 3, 1pm-2pm EST
Using Social Media for Non-Profit Fundraising: charity: water's Success

What lessons can your non-profit learn from a start-up whose 1.3 million Twitter followers have helped bring clean drinking water to over a million people? charity: water is a non-profit organization bringing clean, safe drinking water to people in developing nations. Paull Young, Director of New Media, leads the organization's online presence.

Sign up for future calls here.

-download podcast here
-Stream podcast here: