Satyagraha and Climate Justice

Love this connection from Matthew Klippenstein… we have much to learn about justice, and especially climate justice, from our neighbors and our own history…

Articulating a hopeful, abundant vision of what the future could be has helped climate activism gain widespread support across Canada, and even from a strong majority within Alberta’s energy sector. With the province facing a crisis, our movement may benefit from affirming solidarity with the many who face uncertainty, before we criticize the few who got them there. With luck, and working together, we can craft a “sacred yes” so inspiring that instead of revisiting old wounds anew, Canadians from coast to coast to coast can together create an abundant future “pour tout.”

Source: Three climate justice metamorphoses and a lesson from Gandhi | National Observer

The Apps You Should Really Be Concerned About with Your Privacy

After examining maps showing the locations extracted by their apps, Ms. Lee, the nurse, and Ms. Magrin, the teacher, immediately limited what data those apps could get. Ms. Lee said she told the other operating-room nurses to do the same.“I went through all their phones and just told them: ‘You have to turn this off. You have to delete this,’” Ms. Lee said. “Nobody knew.”

Source: Your Apps Know Where You Were Last Night, and They’re Not Keeping It Secret – The New York Times

Everyone is afraid of what Google and Facebook “know” about them and how much information they’re sharing with these services because of poor media coverage.

While those two services need to be investigated and questioned, it’s the “bottom half” of the advertising industry connected to seemingly innocent apps that you install on your mobile device to give you the weather or locations of gas or local sports scores that are really the most alarming in how they treat your personal location data.

Good report here by the NY Times (we need more of this type of journalism in the tech-sphere).

The God of Progress

An intriguing essay on a point that has been made repeatedly about American religion, particularly its inextricable connections to cultural materialism and scientific progress…

Our modern world tries extremely hard to protect us from the sort of existential moments experienced by Mill and Russell. Netflix, air-conditioning, sex apps, Alexa, kale, Pilates, Spotify, Twitter … they’re all designed to create a world in which we rarely get a second to confront ultimate meaning — until a tragedy occurs, a death happens, or a diagnosis strikes. Unlike any humans before us, we take those who are much closer to death than we are and sequester them in nursing homes, where they cannot remind us of our own fate in our daily lives.

Source: Andrew Sullivan: America’s New Religions

Instagram Party Accounts

Only a matter of time before us 40-year-olds start spinning up Instagram party accounts (just like we took over Facebook)!…

While Facebook event pages make clear who their organizers are, Instagram party accounts frequently don’t divulge that information. The anonymity of a party page allows for plausible deniability if the account gets discovered by a parent. If a party you spent weeks hyping up on Instagram gets out of hand, you can simply “be like, ‘Yeah, I had friends over and more people came,’” says Brown.

Source: What Is an Instagram Party Account? – The Atlantic

Tackling Tech Bias for People with Disabilities

Fantastic post… every organization, nonprofit, and church could gain valuable insight from the takeaways here:

The best path ahead is to seek out the affected stakeholders and work with them towards a fair and equitable system. If we can identify and remove bias against people with disabilities from our technologies, we will be taking an important step towards creating a society that respects and upholds the human rights of us all.

Via Venturebeat

NASCAR’s Social Media Leaderboard

Marketing and NASCAR are two of my longtime passions (lots of overlap on that Venn Diagram)… so I couldn’t resist sharing these stats.

Interesting to note that Danica retired from NASCAR after this year’s Daytona 500… that doesn’t say very good things about the health of the sport from a marketing perspective.

Kyle Busch led all drivers in engagements and total video views, with Danica Patrick coming in a close second. Busch and Patrick are both sit near the top in nearly every category.

Source: NASCAR’s Social Leaderboard: How the Top Drivers Stack Up | opendorse

The future of computers

In-ear devices will be the way we interface with our “computers” (AI assistants) within the next decade…

Kuo reportedly says that AirPods are Apple’s most popular accessory ever, and predicts that the company will go from selling 16 million in 2017 to more than 100 million by 2021.

— Read on www.theverge.com/2018/12/2/18122232/apple-airpods-upgrade-first-quarter-2019-ming-chi-kuo-rumors

You’ve already been hacked

Yet another reminder to change your passwords, use Two Factor authentication when you can, keep up with your credit and debit card statements, and don’t think for a second that all of your information isn’t already “out there”…

For 327 million guests, the information exposed was strictly personal: birthdays, passport numbers, email and mailing addresses and phone numbers.While some credit card information, card numbers and expiration dates, may also have been compromised, it was stored using a more advanced encryption method. Still, Marriott said it had “not been able to rule out” the possibility that card information had also been stolen.

Source: Marriott discloses a massive data breach affecting up to 500 million guests – The Washington Post

Churches, We Need to Talk About Website Accessibility (and Discrimination)

Open Door to a Church

“Failure to comply with Section 508 of the Department of Justice’s ADA (American with Disabilities Act) Standards for Accessible Design could expose your company to hefty fines, the risk of expensive criminal and civil litigation as well as a reputation for being unfriendly to the disabled.” https://userway.org/

I’m going to make a rant here. Forgive me (or just don’t read if you’re not up for a Sam Rant™).

Cheap website builders really upset me. For a number of reasons.

We’re working on a couple of large church website revisions for clients this week. These are content-heavy sites with numerous pages that are all info-dense with text, video, audio, podcasts, galleries, and just about every measure of content you can imagine. They are both complicated builds with lots of moving parts. So, we are constantly doing checks and QA (quality assurance) tests to make sure everything is working. Building websites of this scale might be sold as an easy thing to do on Super Bowl ads, but they are definitely not easy or “quick” things to do if you want to do them right.

One of the pitches I make to clients like this when they want to know what Harrelson Agency does differently that they couldn’t get done if they just used Wix or Squarespace or Weebly or one of the many other “website builder” apps is the care and attention we give to details such as Search Engine Optimization, mobile user experiences, payments and online giving (those %’s really do add up when you start receiving online donations), and security. It’s not that the website builder apps don’t offer those services, but items like SEO or mobile experience and especially website security tend to be the last things that someone volunteering to build your site checks (if at all). Plus, there are just better tools that last longer if you know what you’re doing, which is a cost saver over time. That’s especially true of security in 2018 and 2019.

However, one of the newer pitch items I’ve been including out of my own interests and passion is accessibility. I’ve always been interested in the subject, but that became especially true during my time in the classroom as a teacher. I frequently became frustrated with books or apps or computers or websites that students were forced to use but designed specifically with no regard to accessibility or usage issues. Over the last few years running Harrelson Agency and working heavily on website builds and designs with companies, individuals, churches, and nonprofits I’ve noticed that accessibility definitely takes a back seat to other concerns. That’s ESPECIALLY true with resource-strapped and budget limited churches and nonprofits.

However, that should not be the case. In my mind (that’s admittedly full of “too much righteous indignation” as a mentor once chided me), churches and nonprofits should be leading the way to make their websites true open doors to the public in a way that does not discriminate against anyone, including those who need usage, visual, or auditory accommodation to participate in that invitation.

  • 1 in 5 Americans experience permanent or temporary usage, auditory, or visual disability
  • 7.6 million Americans are auditory impaired
  • 8.1 million Americans are visually impaired
  • 2.2 million Americans suffer seizures and epilepsy
  • 2 million Americans are blind
  • 19.9 million Americans are motor impaired and cannot use a computer mouse

Technology is most powerful when it empowers everyone.

Apple is one of the most forward thinking and acting tech companies when it comes to raising awareness of accessibility issues for users. It’s one of the reasons I truly love that tools such as iPad are available for students and all people who seek to participate in the global experience that is the world wide web.

https://www.apple.com/accessibility/

Why aren’t churches talking the similar language and instead forcing everyone to fit through a very narrow door and definition of visitor abilities? We wouldn’t do that in the physical world. It’s time to take the digital world just as seriously and stop passively discriminating because of poor website build decisions.

Take your website’s functionality seriously and allow it to empower and welcome ALL. It’s a matter of mixing philosophy with theology with technical know how. And the trick is that it won’t even cost you that much, but you’ll gain so much more and perhaps share the love of God with someone who is looking for a real open door.

Instagram Stories Maker (for Churches, Nonprofits etc)

Just this past week I was having coffee with a friend who volunteers to manage all the social media and website duties for his church (bless them). They’re savvy and very good about getting their church on Facebook Live each Sunday and creating shareable content throughout the week.

I brought up Instagram Stories during our conversation and remarked at how “hot” Stories are from a marketing point of view compared to the FB Newsfeed or Instagram’s photo feed and how more churches need to be hopping on the bandwagon to increase engagement (if that’s your sort of thing).

I just happened to stumble across this iOS app today to make creating Stories easier… will have to give it a shot this week!

Templates You can choose from 40 templates of many different styles. All are 100% editable. · Text Styles There are 50 different texts styles you can add to your stories. All styles are beautifully animated. You can customize fonts, colors, sizes, positions and alignments. · No Account Required…

Source: ‎Mojo – Create Video Stories