Nonprofit Radio, April 12, 2013: Followship & Social Media Boundaries

Big Nonprofit Ideas for the Other 95%

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picture of Allison Fine
Allison Fine
Allison Fine: Followship

Allison Fine, co-author of “The Networked Nonprofit,” has been thinking lately about opening organizational culture to allow nonprofits to be more reactive to the interests and motivations of followers while still keeping Oz in sight. She’ll share her thoughts.

 
 

picture of Gene Takagi
Gene Takagi
Gene Takagi: Social Media Boundaries

Our legal contributor, Gene Takagi from the Nonprofit & Exempt Organizations law group (NEO), suggests rules for your use of social media. It’s not a free-for-all for your employees and volunteers. Gene will help you stay out of trouble.

 
 
 


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Dahna hi there on. Welcome to tony martignetti non-profit radio big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent. I’m your aptly named host. Have you read it to review the show on itunes? If you haven’t, i’d be grateful if you go there. I know you don’t have to go back once you subscribe, but i’d be grateful if you would make the trip here’s what some people are saying in reviews gold for non-profits the best non-profits show period although that person had eclipsys after that period. So it’s period eclipsys i’m amazed at the variety equality and depth of his interviews. That person probably thinks i’m shallow. Otherwise he wouldn’t have been amazed he should just be fulfilled and his expectations being met. You have no idea what the trouble i went through to put those three reviews up their different accounts, i had to go to a public library, use the computer there. So please supplement those three that i put up with with your own one two, five star rating and and review the show. I’d be grateful. This is friday, april twelfth and i very much hope that you were with me last week because i would develop acute pancreatitis if i heard that you had missed talk between the generations. Phyllis weiss haserot president of practice development council, is a consultant and coach in cross generational communications think sixtieth, sixty ish boss and twenty five ish employees or seventy year old fundraiser and thirty year old donor-centric ship, phyllis had strategies for understanding and working across the generations. This week, followship alison find, co author of the network non-profit, has been thinking lately about opening organizational culture to allow non-profits to be more reactive to the interests and motivations of their followers, while still keeping oz insight and she’s going to share her thoughts. Also, social media boundaries. Our legal contributor, jean takagi from the non-profit and exempt organizations law group neo suggests rules for your use of social media it’s not a free for all for your employees and volunteers, jean will help you stay out of trouble between the guests on tony’s take two. The irs is still using form nine ninety to inquire about your compliance with state charity registration laws. Sounds thrilling, but i can make a lot more interesting than it sounds. My pleasure now to welcome alyson find she studies and rights at the intersection of social media and social change. She’s, author of the award winning book mo mentum, igniting social change in the connected age, published by wile e. Her latest book is the networked non-profit co authored with beth cantor, also widely published. She’s, a contributor to harvard business review online that’s at hbr dot or ge she hosts a monthly podcast for the chronicle of philanthropy called social good. I have one of those, too, and she blog’s a fine blawg at allison fine dot com. They’re two l’s in allison on twitter, she’s at a fine allison with two l’s welcome to tony martignetti non-profit radio. Thanks for having me, tony. I’m delighted to be here. Thanks, alison. Um, you work at the intersection of social media and social change. It sounds like a crossing guard. Yeah, what’s their what’s it that intersection well on off a lot of activity, uh, and a reshaping of institutional life right now. Uh, whereas what used to be on the outside for institutions are in use on the insider is out and that’s the kind of changing of the contours in the landscape that i’ve been taking a hard look at the last several years. What do you mean what’s in was what’s out was in what it’s in is out? What do you mean by that? Well, so imagine tony, you’re running a small social service agencies surety and there are bloggers out there and tweeters and a whole bunch of other folks who are interested in your issue and they’re looking hard. So those folks who used to be on the outside not really able to see inside are poking around now, and they’re talking about your issues and they’re talking about your organization and on the other side, the staff of organisations, whether organizational leadership of likes it or not, are on social media channels and talking about the organization. Well, so what used to be on the inside is now on the outside, uh, and what it does mainly for very traditional non-profit leaders gear the heck out of them. Yeah. There’s ah, right. Scaring about scared about losing control. Yeah, they already lost control. Go continue to care that they’re going to lose it. Okay, on dh. What are your thoughts around? Followship? What do you mean by followship? So now we’re looking at an environment and ecosystem where organizations are flatter, some by economic necessity and others because they’re using social media and networks better and, uh, there’s this changing relationship, as i said between inside and outside and the reality is tony, that people who are open toe helping causes and non-profits aren’t sitting back on their couches waiting to be told what to do, they aren’t waiting for the latest press release to come out, so smart organizations are understanding that in this new environment they have to lead by following their crowd and it’s a very different dynamic. It doesn’t mean they’re not leaders right there setting big goals and saying to folks were trying to get from here, there, you know, we’re trying to end homelessness, we’re trying to reduce obesity, whatever the big goal is, but we need you our crowd to help us get from here to there, and you’re going to do that by being creative and energetic and working side by side with us. But why do why does why do i, as the leader of this very well run? Stewart lee run very efficiently run very productive social organised social service. Organisation that that i’m head of why do i? Why do i need to follow? Don’t i know the goal? What you say you like to say, oz and and how best to get there? I mean, i have a strategic plan, i have a board we’ve we’ve interviewed like minded agencies in the town, in the in the community, we’ve included our community in those interviews to produce that strategic plan. I mean, i think i know best i’m sure you d’oh uh, but the bottom line is, tony, you might think you know best, but social problems are enormously complex. We aren’t making progress in a lot of areas, and if organizations are very honest with themselves, they’ll see oftentimes the lack of progress and we can’t do this work alone, we have got to do this work in communities with communities, and the only way to do that is to treat people as part of your effort, not the foot soldiers doing on ly what you asked. So you’re taking a look at the fact that, uh, things like hunger and poverty and homelessness and domestic violence and climate change any literal way economic we’ve been at these things for generations, you know, so look, over the last thirty years, the needle hasn’t moved on these things, not because we’re not trying, not because there aren’t smart people doing the work, but because they are enormously difficult to solve, and institutions alone can’t solve them. It’s very dismaying to me is i think about all those things that we’ve been at for for generations, but don’t be dismayed, tony, because the great news is we’ve got this, you know, very vital, robust, energetic new way of looking at the world using our social media tool kit oh, and engaging networks of people to do great things, but you’re very encouraged, okay? But you’re concerned also, that people are that leaders are not engaging in the right way. They’re more following their their written strategic plan or they’re they’re treating as you suggested constituents as foot soldiers, you know, do this now, volunteer now sign the petition now. Donate now come to our event, uh, and and and they are exhausted. I spoke to over five hundred social service leaders in wichita, kansas yesterday. Lovely, lovely people. And they are exhausted, tony and they are struggling financially and they’re getting burned out and this is a large reason why pushing the boulder up a hill by yourself as a siloed institution is not an effective way of working. Okay, we don’t have to do it anymore. We have an alternative. Okay, followship is our alternative that’s? Exactly right? Okay, i’m not just made anymore. I’m already uplifted and just just ninety seconds you turn me around all right? So you want teo, you say, you know, take down silos, break down walls, open the culture wei have just like two minutes or so before our first break. What’s our what’s, our first step we need to know where these people are, what they want to do. The first step is listening. Yeah, right. So the first step is once you have come to the understanding of i need to work different, like, you know, there was a world out there that i can connect with. But i have to do it in the right way. Then you begin by listening. What are people out there talking about in regards to my issue and regards, maybe to my institutions. And how can i best help them more listening than we did in the interview’s for creating this music plan that’s exactly right? I’m in a more natural wave of listening through conversation like tony, right? This isn’t a science. This is being human and asking people tell me what you think. Tell me how we’re doing. Tell me why you were dismayed last year when we didn’t do act. I really think social media provides an opportunity for us to re humanize ourselves out there. So i, as the head of this social, i’d like to be ceo of a rather executive director. Okay, president, ceo of this social services so i khun b or i should be engaging directly. Well, you know, social media is not a spectator sport contact sport made everybody hands on and in order for you to run your agency, i think you’ve got to be engaged with your community. All right? I don’t want to break my collarbone. No, like that baseball player did just yesterday. That would be bad. That was just too much contact. But you can’t go on injured reserve. We need you on the field. Okay, on doubt. I mean, i could be having face to face conversations with my folks, too, right? Yes, thanks for the reminder. I never, ever want to give anybody the impression at social media, a substitute for in person engagement. It augments it, it never, ever take the place of it. We’re gonna pick up right there. We got to go away for a couple of minutes. I’ll have some live listener love when we come back and continue this conversation with alison, fine about followship. She’ll stay with me, and i hope you do, too. Talking alternative radio twenty four hours a day. Are you confused about which died it’s, right for you? Are you tired of being tired? How about improving your energy strength and appearance? Hi, i’m ricky keck, holistic nutrition and wellness consultant. If you have answered yes to any of my questions, contact me now at n y integrated ghisolf dot com or it’s. Six for six to eight, five, eight five eight eight initiate change and transform your life. Are you concerned about the future of your business for career? Would you like it all to just be better? Well, the way to do that is to better communication, and the best way to do that is training from the team at improving communications. This is larry sharp, host of the ivory tower radio program and director at improving communications. Does your office need better leadership, customer service sales, or maybe better writing, are speaking skills? Could they be better at dealing with confrontation conflicts, touchy subjects all are covered here at improving communications. If you’re in the new york city area, stop by one of our public classes, or get your human resource is in touch with us. The website is improving communications, dot com, that’s, improving communications, dot com, improve your professional environment, be more effective, be happier, and make more money improving communications. That’s. The answer. Hey, all you crazy listeners looking to boost your business? Why not advertise on talking alternative with very reasonable rates? Interested simply email at info at talking alternative dot com konnichiwa live listener love to tokyo and support of japan. Konnichiwa. Welcome back to big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent. Live listener love also california. We got san francisco and tustin, california. Welcome, san antonio and clifton, texas live listener love to you as well on dh lots of others to come. All right, alison, what should we be listening if we’re gonna be listening? We need to be asking questions of the folks who are connected to our to my cause. What? What? What questions should i be asking? Well, it’s it’s going to depend entirely on your particular cause, tony and and where you are and your life cycle of your organization you just starting. Are you? You know, more mature. I really strongly encouraged people to actually start by just listening and not speaking. Not something that we are taught to dio anywhere. I didn’t take a graduate course in it, did you? No. And in fact, when i was in the dark days when i used to practice law, i was i was always upset that there wasn’t a billing code for listening or thinking that was another there’s never a code for. Thinking i always had to be doing something, producing some documents, some delivery ble what couldn’t i just bill half an hour for thinking about your case? I couldn’t do it. No, i i understand that. And we, you know, in the nonprofit sector b value, dizziness, a great deal. Uh, but it’s very important to get a feel for what people are talking about, what they’re passionate about, what they’re interested in and then to begin to practice asking questions. There’s a great irony, tony actually have to remember howto ask a good question because organizations aren’t good at it we’re so used to broadcasting, though, used to wrapping up ourselves and talking points that are closed, that learning how to honestly openly, authentically asked a riel question that you want to know the answer to that you don’t already know the answer to take some practice. And, of course, this all feeds into riel engagement in the social networks. Exactly. Exactly think about it, tony, think about the number of times you’ve been approached by a non-profit right that there is a they send you a press release or they send you? Ah, you know, direct mail piece. And those aren’t conversations, right? Those they’re just messages being sent at you. You know, it’s a broadcast broadcast right now think about the difference of if you got from somebody who said, you know, i know that you came to our event last year. Um, how’d it go for you? Would you think about it? What do you think about us? What can we do? Better but that’s a conversation. Okay, okay, now we need to ah, keep our goals in sight. Um, you’re just you want us to be you want me to be flexible and how i get to them. That’s exactly right. There’s a group called epic change epic epic change. Okay, they are raising money to give to for global poverty alleviation. And the way they go into every year is they create a facebook group. They invite their, you know, folks duitz expressed an interest in their cause or rather than few fewer into the group they here’s the goal for the year. We’re trying to raise x amount of money or we’re trying to work in a new country. How we going to do it? How we’re going to get from here to there and people really engaged, it takes those great facilitation skills. That’s what followship is all about right? It’s, not the wild west you’re not just letting it go anywhere it wants to go. You’ve got to be a great cocktail party host to make that happen, right? Keeping the conversation going, but it really is being respectful of the creativity and smarts of your supporters and engaging them in a process of getting you from here to there. What am i going to say to my board that looks at me let’s say this is a five year old agency and i’ve got ah, oh, seven hundred fifty thousand dollars annual budget, right, trying to keep it fairly modest, but, you know, i’d like to have achieved something in five years for pete’s sake. Um, my board expects me to be the leader. What am i going to say to them when i’m asking when i’m asking them to allow the agency to be flexible and taking tio not only take into consideration, but follow the follow the lead of the crowd? Uh, with so if you have a very skeptical board, which would be a shame, right? We really got to think about who serves on board and and why we keep packing them with so many lawyers. Yes, much bigger topics for life, right? Because, lord find on certainly uncertainty very, very unsettling. Yes, you well, now. Ah, so if that’s the kind of bored that you have, what i strongly recommend is that you try followship as an experiment, take one small area in which you work for this year, maybe it’s one fund-raising event, maybe it’s one new program or revamping an existing program and try out the idea you’re not throwing the whole organization out. You’re continuing with the things that work. But you are figuring out a new way to work with people that will be particularly appealing to younger supporters. That’s, i think, is the case you could make any board. Okay, we’ll take it and we’ll take it in bite-sized pieces. Could it be? Could we do this around an event? Absolutely. You had suggested the event earlier. How do we do have a wee look what could have done better? Think about the difference tony of posting on facebook from a group that you’ve liked that says march nineteenth is our gala dinner buy your tickets now from a post echo’s up six months earlier that says we’d like to do a spring event. What kinds of things have you been to lately that you like? What kinds of things do you think we could do and start a conversation about it? Which one do you feel more excited about? Yeah, i’m going to participate in the latter. Mohr you engaged me now i have a pretty sizable ego, though. It’s gonna be hard for me now. All right? So you’ll help me persuade the board. Now, i have to now have to persuade myself that i don’t have all the answers in our community geever so if you feel that you have all the answers, i would suggest social change work is probably not a good fit for you. Therapy is probably wise psychiatry, perhaps even psychotropic drugs i’m already using them. I’m afraid already on psychotropics led me to this delusion. This is really, really hard work now, okay? It doesn’t mean that we don’t need mars confit and people running organizations. Of course we do. But if their ego is so large, they don’t allow other people. To help them solve large community problems, and they’re not going to get very far because these are collective problems that need collective solutions. You’re critical of president obama’s campaign back from two thousand eight what what happened there? I don’t think so much in two thousand eight is as opposed to this last one, so two thousand eight it was great fun, right? They let people come in and gave them a menu of things that you could do and let them go, which is great then they forgot about them once they got elected. I didn’t quite know what to do with a multimillion person proud once they got into the white hot right house because, you know, forbid somebody should talk about marijuana or something that made them uncomfortable. So they put them all into a direct mail, dona base and that’s. What they did this last election cycle was that they had a very clear, tightly controlled, um, ways of managing people as fundraisers and as voters. And that was it. So i found the last cycle enormously disempowering for people. Zamora how they treated the two thousand eight followers. Exactly in two thousand twelve you don’t really think you’re so smart and creative anymore. We don’t really need your help that way. All we need are your checks in your vote. People have a lot more to give them that ego. We know it now. We’ve been in office for years. We know what we’re doing, we know what we’re doing, and we’re going to control this thing to get from here to there. Allison fine is and author most recently of the network to non-profit, which is widely published and that you can find it on amazon. You can also find it on the barnes and noble actually found it a little less expensive at barnes and noble. Um, and i want to send some more live listener love, so to new bern, north carolina, frederick, maryland, and lasalle, illinois live listener love we have listeners in china knee how that’s from shanghai and hei bai, the asian continent very well represented for tony martignetti non-profit radio. Thank you. I’m glad you’re with us week to week. Um, alison, do you think a a presidential candidate could emerge from the social networks? I think what we’re going to see tony is we’re going to see it start at a more grassroots level. We’re going to start to see some layers around the country and then some governors who come up this way. Uh, it’s too hard to try to scale this at a national level first, i think, but you’re going to find somebody who’s very good at this. And, you know, rand paul could be that person because the tea party really get followship or there really are they particularly grassroots organizing online in a way that other people down they are particularly good at online engagement there. Fenton, stick at it. How so? What? What does that they do that you admire? Uh, they allow lots and lots of people to talk very loudly. Right? So being loud doesn’t bother them at all. A part of their dna. Being loud bothers other organizations and awful lot. It scares them. They support local organizing without having a need to try to control all the local organizing. They’re fried or foundation does the same thing right gives you an idea of what you should be doing. So the local p party talk. About these kinds of things, but when and how you do it that’s up to you say the name of the foundation again. You cut out. I’m sorry. The surfrider foundation. Thank you. Surf rider. Okay, they’re fried. Er it’s a non-profit thirty five years old in county started in california to provide coastal cleanup. They have hundreds of, um, chapters around the country. And tony, they basically let them do what they want to do. If you want to mash up our logo, go ahead. If you want teo street cleanup this year instead of coastal cleanup, go ahead. And in the end, the spokes do an amazing amount of work on dh. Just engage thousands of volunteers in this third rider. Like the tea party, i understand that you can provide big goals. You can provide the contours of what we need done and then let people go. Those are excellent examples. I never thought of the tea party as as such a good example of online engagement. But yeah, everything you’re saying is true. They do. They said broad outlines and and then they have hundreds of local activists and i mean and low under the local. Chapters and they’re not worried about descent. They’re not worried about disagreement, they’re not worried about some yelling. You know what happens to awesome with organizations, tony, is they’re so concerned about anything that smacks of criticism that they find it very difficult to step outside in unguarded ways. All right, um, the strategic plan that i’ve mentioned that we my organization spent about twenty thousand dollars on for a consultant to help administer and do the interviews and coalesce, and we had that nice powerpoint deck that they presented to the board a year ago. What am i going to do with my strategic plan? Throw it out. Oh, allison, fine, i said i was being very polite when you mentioned it the first time, and i didn’t bring it up. What a waste of money it was. Well, all right, let’s, talk about it now, because i’ve got my board on board and i’ve set my ego aside. That’s a very big step. Yeah, but it hasn’t solved the problem yet, right? So look how many groups you know that spent all that time and money on a strategic plan. Do everything in the planet at the end. Go the boy. That was the best thing we ever did. All right, maybe one or two over my career. Mainly. What you hear is holy, who spent a lot of time on that thing for sure. And in that process, you know, closer to your community as an organization, right? You had an outside or talk to them a zoho you couldn’t talk to them, which i don’t underst dan oh, that’s interested? Yes, i can’t talk to your community. That’s the core got a scientific approach, tio data collection because that’s the corner of their plan. You know, i was a program evaluator for a long time, tony. So you know, i have respect for people who collect data, but to say that you need an outside to come in and interview stakeholders for your organization, as opposed to the conversations you should be having every day with the people who are most important to your efforts. I don’t get it. And then the worst part, though, is pretending that we can project out years at a time. Right now, when anybody who’s successful in business will tell you right now that you can’t plan out more than a year? You just can’t your troublemaker. I am okay. And i’m small, so people really kind of leave me alone. I admire troublemakers. I like things to be shaken up. It’s a school during you call a pot stirring okay? During, right? Something that pops. Not so much troublemaker. All right, i’ll call you troublemaker. You call yourself a buster? How does the occupy movement do? Just we just have about two minutes left. What’s your assessment of them. I think that, uh, i think it’s fascinating. I think they did a great job of turning out. Ah, lot of people. But i think of that kind of organizing tony like a pointillist painting. It’s one dot and it’s going to take a lot of dots over a lot of time for that thing to mature. It’s. Not over yet. It’s just in its infancy ilsen. Fine. I hope you’re going to come back. My pleasure, i hope. It’s been my pleasure talking to you. Thank you very much. Alison. Fine. Her latest. My pleasure. Her latest book, the network non-profit co authored with beth cantor. You confined it. Amazon. You can find it at barnes and noble and on twitter, she’s a fine thankyou again, alison. My pleasure, tony talking. We’re gonna go away when we come back. Tony’s, take two about some charity registration technicalities and then social media boundaries with jean takagi. Stay with me. Ditigal lending the dude in the good ending, you’re listening to the talking alternative network e-giving. Nothing. Cubine are you suffering from aches and pains? Has traditional medicine let you down? Are you tired of taking toxic medications, then come to the double diamond wellness center and learn how our natural methods can help you to hell? Call us now at to one to seven to one eight, one eight three that’s to one to seven to one eight one eight three or find us on the web at www dot double diamond wellness dot com. We look forward to serving you. Hi, i’m ostomel role, and i’m sloan wainwright, where the host of the new thursday morning show the music power hour. Eleven a m. We’re gonna have fun. Shine the light on all aspects of music and its limitless healing possibilities. We’re going invite artists to share their songs and play live will be listening and talking about great music from yesterday to today, so you’re invited to share in our musical conversation. Your ears will be delighted with the sound of music and our voices. Join austin and sloan live thursdays at eleven a. M on talking alternative dot com. You’re listening to the talking alternative network. Lively conversation. Top trends and sound advice. That’s. Tony martignetti non-profit radio. And i’m janna agger’s, senior vice president, products and marketing from blackbaud. Dahna and i’m tony martignetti tony martignetti non-profit radio time for my take to taxes are on everybody’s mind april fifteenth coming up so i’m talking about the tax form that charity’s fill out the nine, ninety and between that form and one of its schedules, there are two questions that probe your offices compliance with state charity registration laws, which i always think is interesting that’s a federal agency questioning whether you’re complying with state laws. It’s not a good idea too fudge on those questions because you’re nine, ninety assigned by an officer under penalty of perjury. So you want to be conscious of your compliance with those registration laws in each state where you are soliciting donations, it’s not enough to just be registered in your home state if you are soliciting in other states. The post on my block is irs continues inquiry on charity registration compliance the block is that tony martignetti dot com and that is tony’s take two for friday, the twelfth of april fifteenth show of the year jean takagi is with me he’s, our regular legal contributor to the principal at neo non-profit and exempt organizations law group in san francisco he edits the popular non-profit law blogged dot com, and he is at gi tak gt. A k on twitter. Jean takagi, welcome back. Thanks, sonny. How you doing? I’m doing well, pleasure to have you back, it’s, good to talk to you. We don’t want to need to set some boundaries around social media. Why do we need more than just sort of usage guidelines? Well, let me first get some of your opening comments, tony, dark days when you’re a lawyer. Oh, yes. So you have a song about just go i jean i you know, i i love that you love the practice of law, it did not do for me what it does for you, but i appreciate that, tony, it definitely isn’t for everyone. And i heard alison’s comments as well about lawyers finding uncertainty unsettling on probably being deal breakers and, well, now i don’t think she said, did you say deal breakers? I know should i sort of added okay, well, let’s, not let’s, not put words in my mouth because defamation is one of things we’re going to talk about your there we go. So part of the reason why you need you need rules in this game. And so i actually agree with ours that lawyers do find uncertain uncertainty unsettling, and we can sometimes be deal breakers, which are my words and part of the reason why is that? Because if we give advice, tio some organizations and, you know what, consultant were to give that advice and has ninety nine percent effectiveness and ninety nine percent of the organisation it works really well, there is that one percent it might not work well point, and they might actually get in trouble using that advice with the lawyer we can’t afford to do that. We’ve got to make sure that we’re protecting one hundred percent, which means we can’t quite be is aggressive in some ways in other ways we can let organizations and our clients know how we can empower them to let them know what is okay to do and that they should feel comfortable doing it, that it may be part of theirs, their duties in terms of furthering their mission in order to engage in those things. So that’s one of the reasons why, why we wantto have rules so there’s a better understanding of how to play this game of using social media. And, you know, i think, tony, when you play any game, we should read the rules first, right? They understand what you’re doing. My favorite game is monopoly. I don’t like other players to read. The rules just, you know, yeah, i know. And then and then, you know, i have a good eye use the rules of sort of guidelines, and then, you know, i’ll borrow a little from the bank and things like that, you know, at below and at below market rates and things like that let’s go actually into a couple of those things that you talked about borrowing money from the bank, okay? Let’s say, you know, we organize this nationwide effort and have our volunteers go out and create different events fund-raising events in, uh, in different locations throughout the country, on behalf of our organization and furthering our movement. Well, let’s say, we’ve got ten of these things going on in seven go really well, can we gene, can we taken example? I’m thinking of ah, move on dot or ge, they are frequently get their emails, attend an event in manhattan or the bronx or, you know, can somebody in well, they know that i’m in new york, so they don’t ask me to host elsewhere, but they’re certainly doing these things throughout the country. Yeah, and a lot of organizations are now using facebook and and other platforms toe mobilize their supporters throughout the country, right? Okay, so, you know, let’s, say it’s an organization that’s like move on that that’s got a nationwide presence with a lot of supporters throughout, and they’ve got some active people in different locations again, let’s say they’re ten events and seven go without a hitch and raise a lot of money for the organization. But one of the things you asked and when the things you talked about your take two is, are they registered in those states in which the volunteers there suddenly engaging in these fund-raising activities? Because if they’re not, that can get them into trouble, right? Tony, i think you know better than anybody it can is the now the volunteer yeah, they’re volunteer is acting as an agent of the of the organization at that point. Or is that? Is that a question? I think that’s a question and, you know, the more that the organization is telling the volunteer on how to organize the event and what rules should apply to the event and how the money should be collected and forwarded to the charity, i think it looks more and more like it the organization’s event and charity registration has got to be something that considered okay. Now i’m skirting jargon jail. We haven’t talked about jack in jail for weeks. I’m disappointed too many. My guests are plain talking, plain language. I don’t like that like abstruse language talks over everybody’s head. So why don’t you help define define for me? Because i said, are they an agent, but that that actually is a term of art has legal import, doesn’t it? Yeah, so generally an agent is acting on the authority and on behalf of the principal. So if i ask, skew tony and you are except that you’re going to make a donation on my behalf, another charity and i give you the money to make that donation. You’re acting as my agent, your not making your own donate donation of money. You’re donating the money on my behalf. You have certain responsibilities by taking on that relationship. I’m the agent and you’re the principal in that example, correct. So if the charity tells a volunteer agent to start fund-raising them and organizing an event on their behalf, then it’s really the charities event and the volunteers acting as their agent, which means the charity has responsibilities in that jurisdiction. Okay, okay, so the other things that you raised is, well, what if somebody just took off with the money? But if you’ve got a volunteer there but you have no staff presents there and you don’t really know this volunteer, you just sort of engaged with them online, and all of a sudden they’re holding this event for you, and they take off with the money. Now, what happened? What did you do? What? What? Showing a reasonable care did you take to make sure something like that wouldn’t happen then the awful thing is, what if somebody gets hurt at this event and right? And now in this case, it doesn’t even have to be an event that is a solicitation event like maybe we’re just we’re just rallying the troops, but we’re not asking for any money we’re not soliciting, just trying to maybe we’re all watching a video together or it’s some, you know, kind of activist activity, but but no money is changing hands. Go ahead. So something else could happen. Yeah, exactly. Right. So whether it’s just being an educational event, uh and you’ve got some people out there, they’re gathered together under the charity’s name and you know, they’ve gotten together and maybe there weren’t any steps, teo, prevent some risks or maybe it’s like a walkathon, so maybe it is a solicitation event that’s part fun solicitation, but there weren’t these risk management steps that were looked at charity. The cherry didn’t really take any step to make sure that no harm’s could be prevented that were reasonably foreseeable possibilities of that. So those are things that charities have to think about when they start to mobilize their supporters are are the supporters holding their own events? In which case do do those people after register in order to fund raise for another charity? That might be an issue as well? Or is it the charity’s own event, in which case the charity’s got to think about registration and also creating rules of the game again that have to do with holding that event to make sure that the people who attend or the people who have money get solicited are protected? I’ve got two troublemakers on the show today you’re a lot of trouble, gene, you’re asking a lot of questions? Let’s, try toe help with some answers. What? What? What do you know? Right now, we know what we have to think about, but what are we going to do should we not be hosting these events? Or is it cannes insurance help or we need we need written regulations about what volunteers khun do in other places. Where we supposed to do? Yeah, i think we’ve got to figure out first two’s event is it? Is it the charities event? Or is it the individuals that are gathering together that are raising funds on their own? And if they’re raising funds are their own? Are they going to get in trouble? And should we try to help them understand what their responsibilities are in what limitations there are for them to start raising money on their own without being under the umbrella, if you will, of the charity so rules of the game, first who’s event is it, and if the charity has authorized and encouraged it, it should try to protect those people who are going teo organize the event as well as those people were going to attend the event and having rules there instead of just guidelines makes perfect sense to me, you know, you you’re not allowed to, uh, you know, serve alcohol to minors may may seem, you know, very simplistic and obvious, but sometimes when you’ve got volunteers who you’re unaware of, you’ve not screamed, not interviewed them. Um, you’ve got to be really explicit about what’s, okay? And what’s not okay, even if you think it’s obvious. So rules of the game and rules of the event, i think there’s something that you have tohave in-kind also have some people, you know, on the charities staff that or they’re volunteers, if they’re in all volunteer organization really think about risk management of that event, what risks are involved? And should we take steps like having a first date? You know, kid available or having some people there are having a written release and waiver of liability form that all event participants find those air things to think about? And then the charity registration thing on top of that, if it’s an event of any significance, i think you have to really seriously think about that and probably by your book, tony. Okay, or have me register for you. There you go. Now what if the agent doesn’t follow the rules, then? Is the organization protected at least? Well, maybe, maybe not, but what could i have got any colonization playing the agent and sue the agent? But whoever got hurt from that if its a charity, that man is going to kind of everybody. And if the charity has a deeper pocket than the agent and if it’s, you know, just day ah, volunteer who may not have ah, a lot of that worth and the charity may have a deeper pocket, and the plaintiff lawyer will go after the charity in that case and if they’re not register stirred on top of all of this in that state, it’s going to look even worse for the charity in terms of saying, well, you know, we tried our best, and we just didn’t you didn’t weigh had rules, but but the the solicitation was illegal because the charity wasn’t registered in the state. That looks bad. Yeah, your insurance company might, even if you have insurance might say, well, you’re operating illegally. We don’t ensure that well, okay, uh, okay. So we we strayed a little bit from social media, but that’s fine, because we’re talking about events which might be propagated through social media. What about more directly, you know, the advocacy advocacy online? Sure, i mean, i guess he’s a big thing for for non-profits and i’m just a big proponent of non-profits engaging in a lot of advocacy to further their their mission, but social media channels again allow, you know, a lot of questions to rise, like whose message is being sent? You know, we’ve allowed staff members and volunteers in this kind of followship model that that alison is describing in and where everybody’s is contributing, are you going to be sending conflicting messages? And are some of those messages going toe actually be attributed to the organization and not be a communication of the type that the organization is allowed to do? Like an election eri and communication worth jargon jail right durney election hearing endorsing a political candidate which a five a one c three cannot do, but an individual can do so it gets a little grey when an individual uses an account that has the organisation’s name somehow attached, whose account is it? And is that communication? Ok, ok, but what about i mean, alison was sort of seeking feedback from from the community, i mean suppose someone uses their own account to post something on the organization’s facebook page or or points ah, address is a post on twitter to the organization that i mean that’s what the person’s using their own account? Yeah, i mean, would that be ok, though? That’s the organization is not responsible for that one, is it? Even if it’s just on their facebook pages, somebody else posted it? Well, let’s think about that. What? What if it was a really defamatory statement against somebody? Or what if it was endorsing a candidate for political office, tony and the organization has control of that facebook pages being able to delete that comment out of there, should they do it? Or should they just let it sit there? My my feeling is conservatively, you’re going to want to delete something that would be illegal if the charity had posted it itself. Obviously, you don’t want to show opinions and participation of your supporters on the facebook page, but you don’t want, you know, people the flame or defame others, and you certainly don’t want, uh, charity metoo attributed with endorsing candidates or engaging in some sort of private benefit that that benefit thie organizations, insiders. Those can all get the organization into a lot of trouble. We’ve got to go away for a couple of minutes. When we come back, jean run, and i will keep talking about the social media boundaries. And i’ve got some live listener love for the korean peninsula. Stay with us. You’re listening to the talking alternative network. Latto are you stuck in your business or career trying to take your business to the next level, and it keeps hitting a wall? This is sam liebowitz, the conscious consultant. I will help you get to the root cause of your abundance issues and help move you forward in your life. Call me now and let’s. Create the future you dream of. Two, one, two, seven, two, one, eight, one, eight, three, that’s to one to seven to one, eight one eight three. The conscious consultant helping conscious people. Be better business people. Altum have you ever considered consulting a road map when you feel you need help getting to your destination when the normal path seems blocked? A little help can come in handy when choosing an alternate route. Your natal chart is a map of your potentials. It addresses relationships, finance, business, health and, above all, creativity. Current planetary cycles can either support or challenge your objectives. I’m montgomery taylor. If you would like to explore the help of a private astrological reading, please contact me at monte at monty taylor dot. Com let’s monte m o nt y at monty taylor dot com. Talking alternative radio twenty four hours a day. Welcome back on io haserot for soul, young son and day, john korea on your haserot. Dahna. As i said last week, especially south korea, in our thoughts, lots of saber rattling, you know, i saw i saw seventy something interviewed, and he said, the north is just like a schoolyard bully. It’s, no big deal. Andan. I saw a twenty something interviewed, who said she was nervous and pays attention to where exits are. When she’s, when she’s in buildings. So, anyway, are our thoughts are with you, south korea jane. Let’s, let’s see about okay, so let’s, continue with this online. The all these questions about online your you think that? Ah, non-profit should delete things that it wouldn’t be able to print or ah, post itself on, say, facebook or twitter? Yeah, i think it depends on the channel that you’re using. Sometimes you’ve got listservs where you’ve got a charity, that’s decided not to moderate the contact content, but put in disclaimers that might be one set of rules that applies. But with your facebook account, i think you’ve got to be be careful, especially if it’s a page that’s under the control of the charity, if their comments on there again, that would be hurtful to the charity or hurtful toe. Others that’s something that you might think about the leading, and if it’s obviously going to be in violation of of laws, you’re going to want to report it. You know, it’s against facebook zone privacy or policies as well, but to protect the organization, i think that’s really important, and that gets into what we were talking about earlier about defamatory statements, um, could also be is like harassment? Yeah, absolutely. So you’ve got to be careful, there’s. Some sometimes employees or even managers will use social media channels now to communicate with their people that report to them and got to be very, very careful that they’re not sending messages that if they communicated in real life or by email. This is not all of a sudden. Better because it’s being broadcast on social media. Aren’t there also issues around posting other people’s content? Either me either an excerpt or even just linking to it let’s talk about that? Yeah, it’s a great question. Tony gets a little bit confusing when we’re talking about copyrights on copyright protection there a lot of non-profits out there that are just accepting from other sites and thinking that as long as you attribute that that source that it’s okay, and that might not just be content written content, but that could be photos and music as well. The company presentation, you got to be careful because somebody else owns that content, and just because they’ve published it on the web doesn’t mean they’ve given free permission for anybody else to copy and use it so that can get organizations into trouble. There are some some exceptions for fair use, uh, which might involve charity or commentary or criticism on sometimes for non-profit educational purposes, but that can get really big. Ah non-profits really want to know what they’re doing when they are borrowing or accepting content from other sites or from other individuals, and then suddenly posting it on their own and again, even with attribution that that may not be sufficient. Yeah, attribution doesn’t hear it. So you’ve got to make sure that either you’ve gotten written permission to use that content or you’re using it in a fair way that would not create an infringement liability issue. Okay, but those fair, those fairways, those those are the exceptions that you were talking about in fair use and they’re pretty pretty well defined. Well, not so well defined. Well, ok, they’re specific categories. Yeah, and they’re definitely enforced in different ways in different jurisdictions. So if you just read, you know, website resource on fair use don’t rely on that, but i do encourage all non-profits if you are borrowing or accepting or commenting on other people’s content and putting it up on your own sites to make sure you understand what the rules are, so do look some good, you know, reputable web resources for that and then move on from there in california, we’ve got an organization called public counsel that’s got excellent information on copyright and fair use, and i think other other states organisations could probably look at that stuff as well, because some of the state laws will be similar and just get a general idea of what the rules are and that’s a public counsel c o u n c l e that’s, right. Okay, just a couple of minutes left before we have to go away. Gene. So if there is a violation or something you’re you’re just concerned about you talked about deleting the post, what else should we be conscious of? Well, i think the important thing, especially on a governance levels way talk about board board duties now, tony is the board to develop a social media policy for the organization, so now they think and delegate the drafting out to management, but to have a social media policy and to make sure that everybody using social media on behalf of the organization understands what the rules are and what the risks are, because those those volunteers and supporters want to do good things for the organisation for its missions, they don’t want to go get the organization into trouble, but what happens is oftentimes they just don’t know what the rules and risks are, so educating them through a policy have guidelines for sure, but also have solid rule in place that don’t allow them to. Do things that would violate the law think that’s critical, just like thirty seconds left. Jean how about apologizing on the site where the violation occurred? Sometimes i can work, some sometimes can get you into more trouble, so you know, sometimes you’re just during the pot even more tomorrow how allison’s, where then? And that can create more more divisions, so it sort of look at it on a case by case basis. Look, a senior management, the american red cross put out a tweet before that says this was a rogue treat that says, when we drink, we do it right getting withered. This was a mistake, somebody using their personal account and thought they thought they were using their personal count. Instead, the american red cross account american red cross immediately came up with an apology that said, we’ve deleted the road treat, but rest assured the red cross this sober and we’ve confiscated the keys, humor, apology and everything worked out just fine. All important points to keep in mind. Social media is not just a wild west gene takagi principle of neo, you’ll find his block at non-profit law blogged dot com, you’ll find him. On twitter at gt a kg tech gene, thank you very much. My pleasure to talk to you again next month. Got some final live listener love teo taiwan we don’t know the city, but taiwan welcome and ni hao next week a conversation with amy sample ward reduction part do we’re talking about her new book co authored book social change? Anytime everywhere we started last month and there’s more to cover about your fund-raising calendar and social media. Andi, i’m hoping for a special appearance by tim amy’s, dad hoping we can get him to call in like to have a little fun with tim sample we’re all over the social web can’t make a click without lador a spark a testa trying to say, smacking your head hard into tony martignetti non-profit radio pinterest for example, i’ve got boards for the show and my blogged my favorite board on pinterest, though that i’ve got is women leading non-profits lots of videos of female non-profits ceos like abby falik of global citizen year and marry in wright edelman of the children’s defense fund. If you can suggest some that are missing, please do our creative producer is claire. Meyerhoff sam liebowitz is our line producer, but not today. Today, the line producer is janice taylor. We don’t have an assistant producer, but we struggled through. Janis filled both roles. The show’s social media is by regina walton of organic social media and the remote producer of tony martignetti non-profit radio is john federico of the new rules. I hope you’ll be with me next friday went to two p m eastern at talking alternative broadcasting, found at talking alternative dot com. Duitz found anything? That dude, in the good ending, you’re listening to the talking alternative network. Get him. E-giving you could hi, i’m donna, and i’m done were certified mediators, and i am a family and couples licensed therapists and author of please don’t buy me ice cream. 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You’re listening to talking alternative network at www dot talking alternative dot com, now broadcasting twenty four hours a day. This is tony martignetti aptly named host of tony martignetti non-profit radio. Big non-profit ideas for the other ninety five percent technology fund-raising compliance, social media, small and medium non-profits have needs in all these areas. My guests are expert in all these areas and mohr. Tony martignetti non-profit radio fridays, one to two eastern on talking alternative broadcasting are you fed up with talking points, rhetoric everywhere you turn left or right? Spin ideology no reality, in fact, its ideology over in tow. No more it’s time for action. Join me, larry shot a neo-sage tuesday nights nine to eleven easter for the ivory tower radio in the ivory tower will discuss what you’re born. Teo you society, politics, business it’s, provocative talk for the realist and the skeptic. I want to go what’s. Really going on? What does it mean? 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