This guide presents advocates with a collection of popular online services that can be used for advocacy quickly with little to no technical support. There are services for publishing photographs and video, for setting up a campaign blog or for using mobiles to communicate in a group. An amazing amount of functionality and tools are available simply by connecting to the Internet and opening up a web-browser. You don't need to have a lot of technical expertise to try some of these. You also don't need much money, these services are offered at low- to no-cost.
They require a broadband connection and are not recommended for dial-up connections. Advocates can easily and quickly connect, gather information and distribute powerful messages by utilizing these services, the majority of technology is out of sight. This guide presents use of these services from a northern NGO perspective, though we have tried to present alternative services popular in different regions and languages.
Before you start working with these tools, please note: most are free to use and are great for short-term or immediate small-scale projects. Some of these tools allow you to keep in control of your content, but nearly all of the companies that own these tools reserve the right to use the content you are posting in some way (see individual service listings section titled "Your Content" for more information). Because these are commercial services subject to the whims of the market, they can not be relied on for large-scale or long-term projects, nor for handling secure and sensitive information. Each service listing in this guide provides information on who owns the service and their track record on handling private content, along with information on when it is appropriate to use the service and when it isn't.
These tools can be used by advocates in a variety of ways including:
- Mobilising and Coordinating
- Documenting and Visualizing
- Informing and Communicating
- Bypassing and Accessing
This guide is intended for individuals who have not used these services before. If you have already used many of these services than you may be interested in Global Voices, Advocacy 2.0 guide found at http://advocacy.globalvoicesonline.org/projects/advocacy-20-guide-tools-....
For more inspiration and examples of using these services, please see DigiActive at: