The changes that networks are hard-wiring into society are discussed much more often in the corporate world than in our world of social change. That’s why we’re so excited that writer, researcher, and strategist Tom Liacas has joined our team. Here is a selection of Tom’s recent writing on network society trends in Mashable, Mobilisation Lab and more.
Based in Montreal, Tom Liacas has over eighteen years’ experience as a campaigner, corporate strategist, and writer working on the frontiers of digital change. Having served as Adbusters Magazine’s Campaigns Manager in the years when their digital campaigning practice was just getting started, Tom went on to deepen his knowledge of next-generation online influence strategies through an M.A in Media Studies at Concordia University and then flipped over to the private sector, where he founded a publicly-traded social media agency.
Now back to progressive work full time, Tom brings a unique understanding of network society and how institutions and causes can harness its forces to build their own power. Below is a sampling of his recent writing.
Tom has dug deep into the applications of distributed organizing/campaigning as a principal factor behind the explosive growth of climate activists 350.org. Read his article in Mashable.
Writing for Mobilisation Lab at Greenpeace, Tom explored the winning balance of top-down leadership and grassroots autonomy applied to distributed organizing at groups like 350.org and street harassment activists Hollaback! Read his article on the Mobilisation Lab blog.
For those with a more academic bent, Tom’s study of distributed campaigning was also presented at the Goldsmiths University of London “Social Media, Activism, and Organisations” conference in 2015. The full academic paper is available online here.
Micro-fundraising at Avaaz and Sumofus
Often dismissed as slacktivist petition sites, Avaaz.org and Sumofus.org have steadily built membership and power that translates into effective online and offline pressure campaigns. They have also excelled at raising millions through small online donations, a game-changer that frees them up to pursue any target that their membership identifies for them. Read Tom’s analysis in Mashable, including interviews with key figures in both organizations.
Tracking people-powered activism with MobLab
Tom is a key contributor to Greenpeace Mobilisation Lab’s bi-weekly Dispatches, which report on digital and people-powered activist innovations from around the world. You can sign up to receive MobLab’s Dispatches here.