Press Release from MicroPlace, an eBay Company

“MicroPlace, [is] the world’s only online brokerage specializing in socially responsible investments that alleviate poverty. Today we are launching a nationwide campaign to help the everyday investor address poverty with as little as $100 – using the spare change that is laying around your house.”

Link to press release

The Backlash Over Green Marketing Is Already Here

Seth Godin says that there will be a coming backlash over green marketing. He references a marketing campaign that says Tumi will plant trees if you buy a specific line of luggage. Also relevant is this story about “green” Barbie: The Ultimate Greenwashing: Barbie Goes Green.

The fact that it’s so hard to quantify a product’s carbon footprint is the root cause of this marketing problem. (It’s the classic measurement issue that we see recurring in the social sector). For now, we have, from the FTC: Part 260 — GUIDES FOR THE USE OF ENVIRONMENTAL MARKETING CLAIMS.

And if you’re a marketer that really cares about being green, Seth says you “should be scrambling right now to find a number or an organization that can defend the green brand. If not, it’s going to be worthless and a great opportunity for improvement is going to be lost.”

Sorry, but you’ll have to read his post to understand what he’s saying.

boardnetUSA – revolutionizing the way nonprofit boards and new leaders find each other

boardnetUSA is a website that’s designed to be a marketplace where nonprofits looking to fill board seats can connect with individuals looking to serve on nonprofit boards.

The Volunteer Consulting Group, a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization in New York City with over 30 years of experience aiding in the development and strengthening of nonprofit organizations, initially developed the concept of boardnetUSA. With assistance from philanthropic and corporate supporters the Volunteer Consulting Group serves as the primary management and coordinating entity of the growing national network that is boardnetUSA.

Link to site

Bags Make A Difference

Peep Laja writes:

Hi guys,
Something you might be interested in:

A friend of mine is starting a social venture where she is helping to empower the indigenous women of Ngoble-Bugle (a tribe living in northern Panama) through giving them access to the world market by selling their amazing handicraft to the world. These women make the most amazing bags from plant
fiber. It takes 2-3 months to make one bag, and they are awesome.

Until now these women had no access to the market. There are hardly any roads leading to where they live, not to mention anything else. Sometimes a buyer goes to the villages and forces these women to sell their bags for just a couple of dollars. Couple of dollars for bags which took over a thousand years
to design and over 2 months to make. Now Sarah (the social entrepreneur in the making) is giving them a fair price for the work and providing these women access to the whole world.

She started a blog where she is talking about each step of setting up this venture. A great way to see positive change happening step by step. Link:


Two Data Points And Articles About Cause Marketing On Facebook

First is a blurb from Businessweek:

Project Agape takes a different tack with its Causes application, which raises awareness and money for nonprofits and other causes. The service takes a 4% transaction fee on contributions raised through the application. Since launching nearly a year ago, the application has generated more than $2 million in donations.

Second is about another widget company trying to do something similar:

Dank Apps, the company behind the Lotto application on Facebook, has rolled out a series of new applications called Social Change that give a significant portion of proceeds to charity. The initial set of apps consists of:

Public Schools Turning to Online Auctions To Raise Funds-

Facing budget shortfalls that are squeezing education basics, more Massachusetts public schools are turning to online auctions this spring to raise money for supplies, field trips, library books, playground equipment, and computers. And they’re raking in from $6,000 to $20,000 in the process – more money than live or silent auctions generate at traditional fund-raisers.

The online auction site is powered by, which is a product of cMarket.

Here’s the link to the article.