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Making The Web Powerful

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  • As you may or may not know, Amnesty International is an organization, founded to protect human rights worldwide. We research and document human rights violations, plan actions, and try to raise public awareness for almost fifty years now. We've got 2.2 million members and subscribers worldwide, are active in over 150 countries and regions, and have offices in more than 80 countries. Here in the Netherlands, we have 300.000 members and 200 people in our staff
  • As you may or may not know, Amnesty International is an organization, founded to protect human rights worldwide. We research and document human rights violations, plan actions, and try to raise public awareness for almost fifty years now. We've got 2.2 million members and subscribers worldwide, are active in over 150 countries and regions, and have offices in more than 80 countries. Here in the Netherlands, we have 300.000 members and 200 people in our staff
  • As you may or may not know, Amnesty International is an organization, founded to protect human rights worldwide. We research and document human rights violations, plan actions, and try to raise public awareness for almost fifty years now. We've got 2.2 million members and subscribers worldwide, are active in over 150 countries and regions, and have offices in more than 80 countries. Here in the Netherlands, we have 300.000 members and 200 people in our staff
  • As you may or may not know, Amnesty International is an organization, founded to protect human rights worldwide. We research and document human rights violations, plan actions, and try to raise public awareness for almost fifty years now. We've got 2.2 million members and subscribers worldwide, are active in over 150 countries and regions, and have offices in more than 80 countries. Here in the Netherlands, we have 300.000 members and 200 people in our staff
  • As you may or may not know, Amnesty International is an organization, founded to protect human rights worldwide. We research and document human rights violations, plan actions, and try to raise public awareness for almost fifty years now. We've got 2.2 million members and subscribers worldwide, are active in over 150 countries and regions, and have offices in more than 80 countries. Here in the Netherlands, we have 300.000 members and 200 people in our staff
  • As you may or may not know, Amnesty International is an organization, founded to protect human rights worldwide. We research and document human rights violations, plan actions, and try to raise public awareness for almost fifty years now. We've got 2.2 million members and subscribers worldwide, are active in over 150 countries and regions, and have offices in more than 80 countries. Here in the Netherlands, we have 300.000 members and 200 people in our staff
  • It all started in 1961 in London, when this man, Peter Benenson, read an article in his newspaper when he took the underground to work. It was an article about two Portugese students, living under the dictatorial regime of Salazar who were sentenced to seven years in prison for raising their glasses in a toast to freedom. He decided to do something for them, and for all political prisoners.
  • He wrote an article for the Observer newspaper and started an action: Appeal for Amnesty 1961. That article became the foundation for Amnesty International.
  • For almost fifty years, Amnesty went on to become the largest human rights organisation in the world. Thanks to our members, who, like Benenson, read something in the papers or saw something on tv that they would like to change. They wrote millions of letters to governments around the world, adopted political prisoners, signed petitions, spread the word on the streets and made Amnesty International into what it is today. We're respected around the world, and even received the nobel peace prize in 1977.
  • But the world is changing. You know that, because almost every speaker before me has mentioned it. Newspapers and other mainstream media are in trouble. For instance, The Observer was almost axed this summer, due to its losses. Old-school television is losing out to the internet. The number of channels where people can read about what's happening in the world is multiplying every day. The Peter Benenson of 2009 wouldn't write an article in The Observer. He would set up a blog, and try to start a human rights revolution via Twitter.
  • That's why Amnesty International is looking for more and more ways to engage people for human rights. People can send in their protests via e-mail or text message, and new technologies like Twitter and Facebook are creeping into our ways of working. More on that later.
  • As I said earlier, Amnesty International is constantly trying to find new ways to get our message across. Well, our audience is constantly finding new ways to communicate, and so should we. Social networking is basically a return to our roots. I met someone yesterday who learned about Amnesty from the people who campaigned on her university. In other words, our volunteers on that university were Amnesty's first social media experts. Social media in the twenty-first century is not organised on a local scale, but more on a national, and mostly on a global scale. So we, the webteam at the Amsterdam office of Amnesty, are playing the part that the campaigners on universities played all these years ago.
  • The Dutch Amnesty section is active on numerous social networks, like Hyves, the largest network in the Netherlands, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  • The Dutch Amnesty section is active on numerous social networks, like Hyves, the largest network in the Netherlands, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  • The Dutch Amnesty section is active on numerous social networks, like Hyves, the largest network in the Netherlands, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  • I'd like to talk to you about Twitter. You all know that Twitter is the current buzzword in the social media world, but I want to show you three things that really made Twitter work for us.
  • Our first action on Twitter was in March of this year. The man on the left is Maxime Verhagen, minister of foreign affairs in The Netherlands. He is an avid Twitterer, and responds via Twitter to people who ask him questions about his work. You may think that he delegates it to his staff, but that isn't the case. He does it all by himself. On this picture, you see him at a Twitter meetup, a tweetup, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague, which he organized to get to know his followers on twitter.
  • In March we asked our followers (144 at the time), to ask mister Verhagen on Twitter to support an arms embargo against Israel and Hamas. About twenty people responded. Not much, I agree, but those twenty people sent their message directly to the Blackberry smartphone of the minister. Most letters we send to the minister end up with his staff, so this action was a wonderful addition to our goal of influencing the minister.
    For our second Twitter story, I'd like to tell you about an action from our British colleagues. Let's start with a small video.
  • Now as you can see, Shell isn’t coming clean in the Niger Delta, and Amnesty International wants to change that. But how could we manage this?
  • Well, to join the debate about global warming and corporate responsibility Shell has built a website called Shell Dialogues. They host web chats there about all kinds of important things like sustainability, biofuels and CO2 emissions. But we wanted to talk about human rights.
  • So our British colleagues mobilized their supporters and asked them to twitter this message to Shell:

    @shelldotcom Please schedule a web chat on Shell Dialogues so we can discuss the impact of your presence in the Niger Delta on human rights.

    A simple Twitter message, repeated by just a few hundred users, and a couple of days later, Shell gave in and pledged to organise a web chat.

    They did, and although most questions had to be submitted in advance, we tried to influence the discussion by organising a simultaneous chat that people could open in a second window. Our experts responded directly to Shell's answers, so that the people who were in the Shell chat could ask better questions.
  • So our British colleagues mobilized their supporters and asked them to twitter this message to Shell:

    @shelldotcom Please schedule a web chat on Shell Dialogues so we can discuss the impact of your presence in the Niger Delta on human rights.

    A simple Twitter message, repeated by just a few hundred users, and a couple of days later, Shell gave in and pledged to organise a web chat.

    They did, and although most questions had to be submitted in advance, we tried to influence the discussion by organising a simultaneous chat that people could open in a second window. Our experts responded directly to Shell's answers, so that the people who were in the Shell chat could ask better questions.
  • So our British colleagues mobilized their supporters and asked them to twitter this message to Shell:

    @shelldotcom Please schedule a web chat on Shell Dialogues so we can discuss the impact of your presence in the Niger Delta on human rights.

    A simple Twitter message, repeated by just a few hundred users, and a couple of days later, Shell gave in and pledged to organise a web chat.

    They did, and although most questions had to be submitted in advance, we tried to influence the discussion by organising a simultaneous chat that people could open in a second window. Our experts responded directly to Shell's answers, so that the people who were in the Shell chat could ask better questions.
  • So our British colleagues mobilized their supporters and asked them to twitter this message to Shell:

    @shelldotcom Please schedule a web chat on Shell Dialogues so we can discuss the impact of your presence in the Niger Delta on human rights.

    A simple Twitter message, repeated by just a few hundred users, and a couple of days later, Shell gave in and pledged to organise a web chat.

    They did, and although most questions had to be submitted in advance, we tried to influence the discussion by organising a simultaneous chat that people could open in a second window. Our experts responded directly to Shell's answers, so that the people who were in the Shell chat could ask better questions.
  • So our British colleagues mobilized their supporters and asked them to twitter this message to Shell:

    @shelldotcom Please schedule a web chat on Shell Dialogues so we can discuss the impact of your presence in the Niger Delta on human rights.

    A simple Twitter message, repeated by just a few hundred users, and a couple of days later, Shell gave in and pledged to organise a web chat.

    They did, and although most questions had to be submitted in advance, we tried to influence the discussion by organising a simultaneous chat that people could open in a second window. Our experts responded directly to Shell's answers, so that the people who were in the Shell chat could ask better questions.
  • So our British colleagues mobilized their supporters and asked them to twitter this message to Shell:

    @shelldotcom Please schedule a web chat on Shell Dialogues so we can discuss the impact of your presence in the Niger Delta on human rights.

    A simple Twitter message, repeated by just a few hundred users, and a couple of days later, Shell gave in and pledged to organise a web chat.

    They did, and although most questions had to be submitted in advance, we tried to influence the discussion by organising a simultaneous chat that people could open in a second window. Our experts responded directly to Shell's answers, so that the people who were in the Shell chat could ask better questions.
  • So our British colleagues mobilized their supporters and asked them to twitter this message to Shell:

    @shelldotcom Please schedule a web chat on Shell Dialogues so we can discuss the impact of your presence in the Niger Delta on human rights.

    A simple Twitter message, repeated by just a few hundred users, and a couple of days later, Shell gave in and pledged to organise a web chat.

    They did, and although most questions had to be submitted in advance, we tried to influence the discussion by organising a simultaneous chat that people could open in a second window. Our experts responded directly to Shell's answers, so that the people who were in the Shell chat could ask better questions.
  • The web chat was a succes, although the answers provided by Shell were a bit vague and didn't answer much. But Twitter helped us to gather a crowd that pushed a large company to talk about their corporate responsibility.
    You can read the transcript at Shell Dialogues, and read more about our own experience on the Protect the Human Blog at Amnesty UK.
  • My last example of effective use of Twitter is our action at the Lowlands music festival last August. It's the largest music festival in the Netherlands, 55.000 visitors, and Amnesty is a regular guest there. Our campaign this year was 'Stop Violence Against Women in Congo'. Visitors could take a much needed shower at the Amnesty International stand.
  • We started with announcements on Hyves, and during the festival we twittered about our showers, using the #LL09 hashtag. We can't say how many people came for a shower thanks to social media, but it started a buzz, and a lot of people said that they read about it on Hyves and Twitter. In total, more than 1000 people showered for Congo, and that is a nice total.
  • We started with announcements on Hyves, and during the festival we twittered about our showers, using the #LL09 hashtag. We can't say how many people came for a shower thanks to social media, but it started a buzz, and a lot of people said that they read about it on Hyves and Twitter. In total, more than 1000 people showered for Congo, and that is a nice total.
  • We started with announcements on Hyves, and during the festival we twittered about our showers, using the #LL09 hashtag. We can't say how many people came for a shower thanks to social media, but it started a buzz, and a lot of people said that they read about it on Hyves and Twitter. In total, more than 1000 people showered for Congo, and that is a nice total.
  • We started with announcements on Hyves, and during the festival we twittered about our showers, using the #LL09 hashtag. We can't say how many people came for a shower thanks to social media, but it started a buzz, and a lot of people said that they read about it on Hyves and Twitter. In total, more than 1000 people showered for Congo, and that is a nice total.
  • The last thing I'd like to say is that we're not as different to a regular company as you may imagine. We've got a stubborn IT department too, some people in our press team are also afraid to lose control they – in my opinion - have already lost some time ago. We're in a constant struggle to combine our reputation as a nobel peace prize winning knowledge organisation with our desired image of a vibrant, modern action organisation. Sometimes it's difficult, but in the long run experimenting with social media will help us to build a new and natural connection with our supporters.
  • Transcript

    • 1. Making the web powerful (on a low budget) Martijn van Es
    • 2. Amnesty International
    • 3. Amnesty International  Protecting human rights worldwide
    • 4. Amnesty International  Protecting human rights worldwide  Researching, documenting and campaigning
    • 5. Amnesty International  Protecting human rights worldwide  Researching, documenting and campaigning  2.2 million members and subscribers
    • 6. Amnesty International  Protecting human rights worldwide  Researching, documenting and campaigning  2.2 million members and subscribers  Active in over 150 countries and regions
    • 7. Amnesty International  Protecting human rights worldwide  Researching, documenting and campaigning  2.2 million members and subscribers  Active in over 150 countries and regions  Offices in more than 80 countries
    • 8. Amnesty International  Protecting human rights worldwide  Researching, documenting and campaigning  2.2 million members and subscribers  Active in over 150 countries and regions  Offices in more than 80 countries  AI Netherlands: 300.000 members
    • 9. PETER BENENSON (1921-2005)
    • 10. Guardian Media Group
    • 11. Nationaal Archief Karen Veldkamp
    • 12. Karen Veldkamp
    • 13. Daphne Horn
    • 14. Daphne Horn @maximeverhagen Ik steun Amnesty en eis een wapenembargo tegen Israël, Hamas en andere gewapende groepen in Gaza. Info: http://url.ie/1akr
    • 15. Daphne Horn @maximeverhagen I support Amnesty and demand an arms embargo against Israël, Hamas and other armed groups in Gaza. Info: http://url.ie/1akr
    • 16. www.shelldialogues.com
    • 17. shelldialogues.com/doingbusinessinnigeria
    • 18. shelldialogues.com/doingbusinessinnigeria http://blog.protectthehuman.com/tag/ shell/
    • 19. Lowlands 2009  Large music festival  55.000 visitors  Stop Violence Against Women in Congo  ‘Shower for Congo’
    • 20. Thank you r.vanderharst@amnesty.nl m.vanes@amnesty.nl @amnestynl/@martijn

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