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Using Social Media to Engage in the BP Oil Spill Discussion

Social media and the gulf oil spill

I’m writing this for people who may be interested in the use of social media to “cover” a disaster such as the Gulf oil spill. For those of you who tend to “bounce” from one website to another, here are links to the BP Oil News blog, BP Oil News Twitter feed, BP Oil News Facebook fan page, and BP Oil News Group discussed in this article.  Also, a warning: the next paragraph of this post contains a little personal history which some may find boring. For pure social media talk, skip to the third paragraph. [Read more…]

Oil Spill Suggestion Box Still Open | Your Suggestions for the Gulf Oil Spill

The oil spill suggestion box is still open at BP Oil News. We’ve received over one hundred suggestions, and more are still coming in. If you have ideas, please submit them at our Gulf oil spill suggestion box.

Crowdsourcing solutions for the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico

We’ve got 3 new posts at about the use of social media and crowdsourcing to empower the public to help with the oil spill at BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf. The Louisiana Governor’s Homeland Security Department has an active Twitter account (@GOHSEP)that is well-used, and the Louisiana Bucket Brigade is using crowdsourcing to map locations where oil has been observed. At BPOilNews, we were surprised to find ourselves crowdsourcing possible solutions for stopping the oil flow or limiting the damage to shorelines. [Read more…]

Crowdsourcing for the first time

In an earlier post I recommended the book Crowdsourcing by Jeff Howe. Okay, the full title of the book is Crowdsourcing: Why the Power of the Crowd is Driving the Future of Business. I mentioned in my post that I was experimenting with crowdsourcing a banner and logo for a new website,, at  Our projects there are finally over, and I was very pleased with the result.  We set an award (a financial amount we were willing to pay) and then different designers from all over the world submitted entries.

If you like, you can ask your friends, colleagues and relatives to go vote on the one(s) they like best.  We asked a bunch of family members and friends to express opinions, and were sometimes very surprised.  The end product was something I would never have visualized, and if I had bid it out to one company, I would have been stuck with one product.  I came away very pleased with the design, and had a lot of fun doing it. Give it a try when you need a graphics or web designer. I’ve used (and still on occasion use) Elance to get designers and others for temporary projects, but Crowdsourcing is more fun and, I believe, leads to a better product.

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