Mistakes happen. I have recently made few major ones, so I know how it hurts to fail. Now, Tony Bowden from mySociety.org, has seen a lot of projects and/or people fail in various places and on various levels – but all of them in the process of establishing a project dedicated to civic engagement or other nonprofit activity. And the good news is the fact, that Tony decided to share his experience in a very creative, interesting and most of all – honest way: by blogging it;) Here is why:
From the numerous questions that I’ve been asked after my presentations, the conversations I’ve had with both hacker/activist types and also existing NGO/CSO staff, and also the large numbers of proposals that I’ve evaluated for the mySociety CEE project, for other OSI funding, and for multiple Social Innovation Camps, I’ve come to realise that there are many key flaws in people’s thinking and approaches to building these sorts of civic and democracy enhancing websites. As such my presentation has gradually evolved away from describing what we do and how we do it, and more towards explaining why we do things in certain ways.
I’ve also come to learn that many of these core ideas are interlinked. There’s an entire philosophy and mindset behind them. You can’t just change one thing about your approach and have everything come together smoothly. But it’s impossible to get across all of these ideas coherently in a 30-minute presentation, and that’s also restricted simply to the people who can attend.
Tony will post his thoughts every day this month, so make sure you read it and learn!;)