A real case study in the power of social media

Living in Japan is an addictive experience. When I talk to other people who have also lived there, they share that smile of a happy time in their life experiencing new and wonderful things. So when the tsunami struck Miyagi this week, it was of no surprise that current and former JET programme participants looked to move quickly to help find missing people, collect funds, share news and support one another.

In the four years that I have worked in online media, I have spoken to many people about the power that blogging and social networking can bring to solve a common problem. This week I saw this power unleashed for a cause I care deeply about.  This blog post from a fellow JET programme participant nicely demonstrates the positive results that the internet can enable geographically dispersed groups to achieve. The video posted above is another example of how quick action can raise awareness, catalysed by the use of shared online content.

At school this week, a group of us arranged a collection for the Japanese Red Cross. We created a brand, made announcements and set up an online collection site. It was great to see everyone at school digging into their pockets to spare some money for the cause.  Thanks to everyone who contributed - will share the final number soon!