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Communities online

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What communities can do[edit]

Overview, see right hand column for more

  • set up location or project pages in this wiki to tell us all about your community action for sustainability
  • green maps
  • encourage and benefit from virtual volunteering
  • community websites and social networking sites
  • encourage participatory journalism
  • develop, perhaps co-develop with others, online resources
  • Internet activism

Why it matters[edit]

Communties online can find it easier to learn from the successes of other communities worldwide, and can celebrate their own successes with the wider online community.

Green Map[edit]

Green Maps are locally created environmentally themed maps with a universal symbol set and map-making resources provided by the non-profit Green Map System. Based on the principles of cartography a Green Map plots the locations of a community's natural, cultural and sustainable resources such as recycling centers, heritage sites, community gardens, toxic waste sites and socially conscious businesses. W

Internet activism[edit]

Internet activism (also known as online activism, digital campaigning, digital activism, online organizing, electronic advocacy, cyberactivism, e-campaigning, and e-activism) is the use of electronic communication technologies such as social media, especially Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, e-mail, and podcasts for various forms of activism to enable faster communication by citizen movements and the delivery of local information to a large audience. Internet technologies are used for cause-related fundraising, community building, lobbying, and organizing. Research has started to address specifically how activist/advocacy groups in the United States and Canada are using social media to achieve digital activism objectives. W

Participatory journalism[edit]

Fast and flexible[edit]

Current events can be better covered, with more immediacy, when there are more people reporting them.

Topic or place specific[edit]

Participatory journalism can tackle subjects mainstream media might leave alone. Examples include environmental disasters and popular demonstrations.

Commentary about local events can be seen through the eyes of people who are most affected by them - people who live in, work in or visit a locality.


Participatory journalism can help develop a sense of empowerment for ordinary citizens and community groups. It can be seen as part of Getting to know your area and can also be used identify positive news and a can-do approach.

The concept of citizen journalism (also known as "public", "participatory", "democratic", "guerrilla" or "street" journalism) is based upon public citizens "playing an active role in the process of collecting, reporting, analyzing, and disseminating news and information." Similarly, Courtney C. Radsch defines citizen journalism "as an alternative and activist form of newsgathering and reporting that functions outside mainstream media institutions, often as a response to shortcomings in the professional journalistic field, that uses similar journalistic practices but is driven by different objectives and ideals and relies on alternative sources of legitimacy than traditional or mainstream journalism." Jay Rosen proposes a simpler definition: "When the people formerly known as the audience employ the press tools they have in their possession to inform one another." W

Virtual volunteering[edit]

Virtual volunteering is the practice of volunteering using the Internet, off-site from the organization (or group) being assisted. Virtual volunteering is also known as online volunteering or e-volunteering. W


  • Global Voices Online, international network of bloggers, translators, and citizen journalists that follow, report, and summarize what is going on in the blogosphere in every corner of the world. W
  • 5 Resources for Citizen Journalists, Rising voices
  • How To Build An Online Community: The Ultimate List Of Resources (2012) The Online Community Guide
  • Loomio School, a collection of case studies and resources about online facilitation, building a collaborative culture, team training, and more. It also provides instruction on using Loomio in your own group. While resources are focused on groups using Loomio, many of them can be used or adapted to any group decision making process. Includes:
  • The Loomio Facilitation Guide "What if we started from facilitation principles and worked toward understanding software? This guide goes in-depth about applying key facilitation concepts in the online space."
  • Movements.org, a division of the non-profit Advancing Human Rights. It is an online marketplace that connects dissidents in closed societies with individuals with desirable skills such as legal, media, PR, and technological experts in open societies. Activists post their needs and request assistance, and experts and professionals post what they have to offer and respond to requests. W
  • Tactical Technology Collective, international nongovernmental organization that trains rights advocates to deploy "information and communications technologies - social media tools, mobile phones, digital security and information design." It works with groups in "developing and transition countries" in particular. W
  • Front Seat - Civic software
  • Green Net GreenNet supports a progressive community working for Peace, the Environment, Civil Rights and Social Justice, through the use of Information Communication Technologies.
  • Teaching Community Technology Handbook, detroitcommunitytech.org


Green Map System - OpenHeatMap - ZeeMaps


"The future is here. It's just not widely distributed yet." - William Gibson

"only connect" E.M. Forster

News and comment[edit]


Ballard Farmers' Market - vegetables.jpg

Feb 17 Commons: Wikipedia Is the Last Best Place on the Internet, Richard Cooke [1]


5 Group Decision Making Resources from Loomio, Dec 27 [2]

Introducing the 'Teaching Community Technology Handbook', Dec 20 [3]

See also[edit]

  • local information can be found, or shared, via our many location pages

Interwiki links[edit]

Wikipedia: Hyperlocal, One Laptop per Child, Internet activism, Citizen journalism, Web 2.0

External links[edit]

  • One Laptop per Child, setup to oversee the creation of affordable educational devices for use in the developing world. W



This page includes Creative Commons Licensed content from the Sustainable community action wiki on Wikia.
The list of authors can be seen in the history, link via drop down menu at top left of page.