There’s a blog meme going around at the moment where you post about 5 things people don’t know about you, and then “tag” five other bloggers you know to post in similar fashion. Fun… but shallow. And that’s OK.
But I’d love to see us have a go at a “meme with meaning”. I really would. I’d like to see bloggers each do a small, good thing, that overall makes a big difference. So I’ve been pondering that for a while. And I came up with something…
Make your blog a sponsor for something or someone
It’s so simple! Decide what you care about, and go find something or someone to sponsor in that area of concern.
While I may well go beyond this for my blog, I can start with the my own story: since 1990 I’ve been sponsoring a child in the 3rd world. Because I care that children in poverty are empowered with real choices. Because I care that they grow up educated and able to read. Because I care that they know that people across the globe are in some small but powerful way, reaching out to them.
In 1990 I started sponsoring Sabina from Bolivia. I asked the man at the Compassion stand which kids he found hard to get sponsored. He said that while the black african kids look so cute when they’re young, the Bolivian kids from up on the Altiplano often have a very ruddy, severe look about them, and — lacking the cuteness factor — don’t get sponsored so quick. Because child sponsorship for me is not a cuteness contest, I picked Sabina. She’s now an adult, out of the programme and working as a secretary somewhere. I’m thrilled for her.
For the last few years my family has had a new girl given to us: Madelin from the Dominican Republic.
My suggestion for a Meme With Meaning
Firstly, find someone or something meaningful to sponsor. It may be a sponsor child. It may be a village well in Africa. It may be a share in a community bank in Bangladesh. It may be something much closer to home.
The point is make you and your blog the sponsors of something, and put up a post about it. Explain in your post what you’re sponsoring and what it means to you. Explain why you chose this person or project, and not something/someone else.
Take or find a photo so there’s a strong visual to accompany your post. (Be careful to respect the privacy of people. In my case calling Madelin from the Dominican Republic is enough. I don’t need to say any more.)
Then (and this is always the fun bit), tag some other bloggers. Who am I tagging? Well I would just be delighted if this thing caught on in a big way in my own neck of the woods… the SEO/SEM/pro-blogger community, so I’m going to tag all the bloggers on Lee Odden’s SEM list.
Now, do the math with me on this one. If Lee’s list represents, say, 300 SEM bloggers, and each found something worth, say, $40/month to sponsor (that’s about the cost of a sponsor child), then as an industry, we’d be supporting good causes all over the place to the tune of $12,000 per month!
Something to ponder…
I have been flabbergasted at the sheer volume of posts related to the Apple iPhone. As a joke I contemplated a post jokingly announcing that mine was officially the last blog in the world to post about the iPhone. I mean, it’s taken up half of techmeme for most of this month! Insane. And yet, those millions of typed words and gigabytes of endlessly repeated images and videos are all on the topic of a luxury item that we can all actually live without, and which most of the world will actually never see!
So my heart behind this “Meme With Meaning” is that we balance out the scales in the blogosphere a little, back from the edge of this pit of me-too mindless consumerism and hedonism (which is a lot of what I see behind these seemingly endless eye-candy iPhone posts) and realise that we have the power to actually do something really good, and to encourage others to be part of that too!
And of course, if you have other ideas for what a blog “Meme With Meaning” might look like, start it yourself!
So, fellow SEM bloggers, consider yourselves tagged