News from the NTEN Connect Blog

Happy Thanksgiving NTEN Members!

Submitted by Annaliese on Wed, 11/21/2007 - 8:46am

As I write this, some folks may be placing pumpkin pies in the oven in preparation for a Thanksgiving meal, and as that warmth sets in, I'd like to extend another warm "thank you" to our NTEN members and announce the NTEN Member who will receive a gift of appreciation from us today:

Sandra Deacon, of the Student Conservation Association.

Thank you for doing the work you do and for being a supporting member of NTEN! We're sending you a coupon for a free NTEN webinar of your choice.

And a reminder to all NTEN members of the free webinars for you this month:

> Free Webinar: An Hour A Day with Google Analytics (recording)

> Free Webinar: Introduction to Google AdWords (recording)

> Free Webinar: Advanced Google AdWords (recording)

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

We're Not Tired Yet

Submitted by Annaliese on Tue, 11/20/2007 - 7:30am

You'd think that the daily giveaways would be wearing the shine off my Member Appreciation Month cheer -- but you'd be wrong!

Today I'm happy to give long-time member (and another 501 Tech Club Leader) a gift of appreciation:

Judy Hallman, of RTPnet!

Judy, we're sending you some NTEN Gear from CafePress. Even though we say that the NTEN Gear is to show your NTEN pride, the truth is that it's the techies for good who make the gear look good!

And since this month is for all NTEN members, don't forget that you can all take advantage of the special programming and discounts this month.

Thankfulness for Our Members

Submitted by Annaliese on Mon, 11/19/2007 - 8:35am

Judging by the number of "Out of Office" automatic replies I'm getting today, there are lots of folks already on their way to visit relatives, friends, and other loved ones for the Thanksgiving holiday.

This year NTEN has decided that the month of November is the perfect opportunity to express our thankfulness for our members. So, we've established the first NTEN Member Appreciation Month, and we've been giving a gift away to an NTEN member every workday this month.

Today we're happy to be able to thank:

Grace Barry, long-time member and Long Island Tech Club leader!

We're sending Grace Forces for Good: The Six Practices of High-Impact Nonprofits, by Leslie Crutchfield and Heather McLeod Grant, compliments of Jossey-Bass/Wiley Publishers.

All NTEN members can get this book for 20% off with the NTEN member discount.

Speaking of member discounts, I'd like to take this opportunity to announce five new member discounts that have come on board:

Closing the Digital Divide Among the Elderly

Submitted by Brett on Fri, 11/16/2007 - 4:53pm

The Houston Chronicle has a report about a project designed to reduce the digital divide among the elderly. The program, sponsored by AT&T, the OASIS institute, and the Houston Parks and Recreation Department, is designed to teach senior citizens how to use cell phones:

"Marlene Matzner — the Houston director of OASIS, a national nonprofit designed to enhance the quality of life for older adults — said the program is part of the agency's plan to reduce the digital divide among the elderly."

Recent research has shown that text messaging works to get out the youth vote. Advocacy groups would do well to watch the success of OASIS's program, particularly as seniors are already those most likely to participate in U.S. elections.

OASIS plans to bring the cell phone education program to 21 other cities after Houston, and to teach computer and Internet skills to the elderly, as well.

Using New Media in Virtual Meeting Spaces

Submitted by Brett on Fri, 11/16/2007 - 3:18pm

[Ed. Note: Don Wedd, of the Center for Economic Progress -- and NTEN Member -- submitted the following case study on his own organization's meeting strategy, as part of NTEN Member Appreciation Month. Learn more about how you can submit to the next issue of NTEN Connect.]

The National Community Tax Coalition (NCTC), which leads the movement connecting working families with tax credits and economic opportunities, is a national coalition of 600 plus organizations providing free tax preparation for low-income families. The NCTC is a project of the Chicago-based Center for Economic Progress.

We have a Steering Committee of 25 people, dispersed nationally, that meets by phone monthly. One of the group wanted to improve our meeting process, so he suggested:

1. Any issue to come before the Steering Committee should be first shared via e-mail.

2. Committee members then react electronically in a forum that compiles all comments (newsgroup, chat room, listserv?).

3. Based on that discussion, the appropriate work group chair prepares and distributes a summary of the key decision-making points and assigns presenters to represent each viewpoint.

4. The conference call uses a "speak only when spoken to" approach, in which the facilitator calls upon the assigned presenters.

5. Reaction is provided online simultaneously through e-mail, texting, or surveying; a commenter’s list is prepared (the equivalent of making a list of people holding up their hands in an in-person meeting) and called upon; formal votes are taken by either phone roll call or online survey tool.

My job was to find tools to support this process. Needless to say, I didn’t find any one toolkit, but have experimented with cobbling together several tools.

Happy Friday, NTEN Members!

Submitted by Annaliese on Fri, 11/16/2007 - 8:10am

NTEN Member Appreciation month continues as we announce today's NTEN Member who will receive a gift of thanks from NTEN:

Lisa Finkelstein, from the Full Circle Fund will get a free webinar of her choice.

All month we're celebrating our members, but as the Thanksgiving holiday approaches, we want to shout out once more our appreciation for the supporting members of NTEN who make our programming and resources possible. Thank you!

We hope you'll take advantage of the special programming and discounts this month.

Coming From NTEN, November 26-30

Submitted by Brett on Thu, 11/15/2007 - 5:09pm

As you prepare your Thanksgiving plans, don't forget about us: We have a few more things to offer you before the Holiday Season really kicks into gear.

First up, three days of webinars:

Half-Way Point of NTEN Member Appreciation Month

Submitted by Annaliese on Thu, 11/15/2007 - 9:24am

Things We Like: Member Appreciation Edition

Submitted by Brett on Wed, 11/14/2007 - 4:33pm

As part of NTEN's Member Appreciation Month, the November issue of NTEN Connect will be compiled from Member submissions, which are beginning to flow in.

Amy Sample Ward, Communications and Learning Associate for the Meyer Memorial Trust, says,

"Readytalks's free online tutorials are a great resource for nonprofits to jump on board with great new media tools like podcasts!"

Marc Baizman, Project Manager for NPower NY, offers two suggestions:

  • Yugma: "It's free web conferencing that just works. I use it with clients and team members all the time. No heavy client installers, and it's FREE."
  • Jing: "Screencasting for the rest of us. Instead of writing long documents that no one reads, I do a 5 minute jing and it's done. Time limited (5 min max) and only in beta, but seems to work very well."

Finally, Dr. Jerry Field, of the Illinois Institute of Technology, thinks that many IT professionals may be closer to earning a degree than they might think:

"Many IT professionals may not have completed their bachelor degree and would like to do so. IT professionals have a number of certifications and may qualify for this [IIT] special program."

You can start the process with an e-mail to Dr. Field.

Send submissions of your own to


NTEN Connect Archives

Submitted by Brett on Wed, 11/14/2007 - 2:47pm

What's more exciting than the announcement that Marvel has started a digital archive of its comics? How about the news that, on the very same day, NTEN has done the same for our e-newsletter, NTEN Connect?

Okay, I suppose your response depends on the type of person you are.

But NTEN Connect is packed with resources from leaders in the field on the latest issues of nonprofit technology, and every issue remains chock-a-block full of useful information. Besides, we're not going to charge a monthly subscription fee.

Visit the newsletter archive today!

And for the freshest content, sign up to have NTEN Connect delivered to your e-mail address of choice.