Doing (social) good, inspired by Facebook

First it was just a simple homepage containing a poll with slightly random questions (“If you had a daughter tomorrow, what would you name her?”), but last week it launched as a fully-fledged social network: Jumo aims to connect people around the issues and projects they care about.

Chris Hughes, who you might have heard of as one of the founders of Facebook and as Obama’s online campaign director, got the idea for Jumo after the Haiti earthquake in 2010 and the massive response and involvement of the online community he witnessed. The key mission of Jumo is to make it easy for users to find the issue or organization they want to support and to then enable to connect with them in a substantive way.

When joining Jumo the user is being asked to select “issues” of interest. If you then indicate for instance that “education” and “poverty” are the issues that you’re passionate about, Jumo will provide you with the “projects” relevant to your issue(s) of choice. You can then sort the organisations close to your location. With around 3,500 projects signed up at the point of launch, there is a good chance you’ll find an issue or project you’re interested in.

The main things that make Jumo different to the various charity sites out there can be best summed up as follows:

  1. Jumo is interactive, not just informative – Users can actively engage with their issue or projects of choice all year round. On your Jumo homepage you’ll be able to view news updates from the causes you care about. There’s also a “Talk” section which aggregates all the social updates from your projects in one place.
  2. There’s definitely a hint of Facebook in there! Key elements of Jumo clearly resemble Facebook. Aspects such as “Like” (a post or video from an organisation) or the ‘fan page’ approach to the page of each individual cause do little to hide the fact that Jumo’s founder used to be closely involved with the biggest social network in the world. I guess the main difference between the two is that Jumo’s focus is much more on the organisation or cause than on the individual.

It will be really interesting to see how many users across the globe will sign up to Jumo over the forthcoming months. It struck me that I was only given one project that was UK based, so I’m curious to find out how many organisations outside the US have joined Jumo.

Main learning point: Jumo clearly aims to really get people engaged with the issues and organisations they care about, utilising social media mechanics that we’ve become so familiar with. The biggest selling point of Jumo is that it aggregates all the information and updates from your good causes in one place. It is set up to connect people on the back of an issue or project of interest, which in itself sounds like a very effective way of getting people more involved in ‘doing good’.



Related links for further learning:

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