Quite often when we write about something related to Twitter, it’s funny or stupid — or both. But it’s important to remember that Twitter at its core is a powerful medium for disseminating information. And sometimes that power can be used for good — like fighting cancer.
Drew Olanoff, a man fairly well known in web circles, recently got some horrible news: He has cancer. That’s just about the worst news anyone could ever want to hear. But rather than sit around and feel bad about it, Olanoff decided to be proactive and use the bad situation for some good. He teamed up with developer Mike Demers to create Blame Drew’s Cancer, a site that asks you to blame everything that goes wrong in your life, on Drew’s cancer.
What’s great about this is that people love to use Twitter to bitch about things. Hell, I do it just as much as anyone — it’s a great past time. But usually those tweets just come off as lame complaints to most of your followers. But now, using the #BlameDrewsCancer hash-tag, all of these tweets are pulled into the site, where they will be tallied to lead to what will hopefully be a large donation to the American Cancer Society and the Make a Wish Foundation.
As a person who’s been heavily involved in the web space for some time across a range of companies, Olanoff realized Twitter was a perfect medium for his message. And just a few days after the launch of the site, it’s working to great effect. This morning, the cause was a top trending topic on Twitter. And even Lance Armstrong, who has just under 1 million followers, tweeted it out.
Here are some other good ones:
Luckily, Olanoff’s Hodgkins Lymphoma has a good cure rate. And we wish him the best of luck as he undergoes months of treatment. But what he needs right now is for some companies to step up to the plate and pledge to donate $1 for every unique person that tweets out his #blamedrewscancer message.
Pretty much every company these days is talking about how it can use Twitter to futher its brand. I see no better opportunity than this, right here, right now.