I remember when Twitter was small. You were a big cheese if you had ten thousand followers, and then minor and then major celebrities signed up to interact with fans on the road, spread the word about charities, or simply because it is less of a pain in the butt as Facebook.
I joined after someone (who has now become quite famous and shall thusly remain anonymous) told me about Twitter in a MySpace message, and after figuring it out, I quite like it. There's few weird apps, a ready timeline, and nobody asking if you want to join their imaginary mafia for the 142nd time.
Twitter has blown up, and there are tons of kids who follow their favourite actors, writers, and politicians. And those in the limelight are often bombarded with follow and tweet requests from their admirers. While some of us old farts might find it silly, it can really make some kid in the hospital's day if Justin Bieber or Jay-z wishes him a happy birthday.
Today an auction began, and I'll admit that I was cynical at first. Influential twitterers are being asked to auction off follow requests, mentions, and retweets. Part of me thought this idea messed with the integrity of Twitter in the way that sponsored tweets does, but I figured I'd still read up on the reasoning behind the auction before passing judgment.
As it turns out, all proceeds of the auction are going to benefit disabled and orphaned children in Haiti. Through aHomeinHaiti.org , kids who might otherwise be left to die will be given an opportunity to have food, shelter, and adult mentors to see them on their way to becoming the generation that affects real change in the troubled nation. When you help the smallest members of a society, you become huge in my eyes.
I'm not surprised that so many of the famous have lent their names to such a noble cause and more should jump on board. Like it or not, celebrity is a huge thing in our society, but I'm thrilled that fame is being used for societal betterment as opposed to staining it like notoriety so often does.
Chances are that large businesses are going to win most of the auctions, but why not band together to make some sick kid's day with a united mega-donation? Or why not make a smaller donation just because it is the right thing to do?
If you want to change a kid's life TODAY without waiting to see if you've won an auction wander over here and drop a dime in a bucket that will hopefully fill to the brim. I may not be a celebrity, but you'll be a hero not only to me, but an innocent who needs their voice heard.
" the most terrible poverty is loneliness and the fear of being unloved" - Mother Teresa