John Coventry
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John's been campaigning on issues for ten years. Now communication director at online campaign platform Change.org, John blogs on campaigns, communications and how people powered change is shifting the political and social landscape.

Entries by John Coventry

To Avoid Special Surprises on Social Media, Curate, Don't Control

(0) Comments | Posted 20 February 2014 | (09:10)

Cursory lessons all round this week on Social Media - as two quite different organisations trying to assert too much control of their message end up losing control of it entirely.

PR agency House PR became the story yesterday for trying to force journalists to tweet puff about...

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The Internet: Fine for Shopping, Not Allowed for Important Stuff

(0) Comments | Posted 18 November 2013 | (11:37)

There was an in-depth look at global campaigning movement Avaaz in Sunday's Observer. Its founder, Ricken Patel, was interviewed about how it builds movements online to secure change. It was a generally fascinating piece, but the headline was bothersome to me - "Can Online Activism Really Change the...

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The Power of the Little Big Thing

(0) Comments | Posted 8 July 2013 | (12:48)

When you're campaigning on something, people often don't care. They don't care on message boards; they don't care on Twitter and Facebook; they don't care, most robustly, in the comments on news websites. "This is not important" they cry; "this campaign is a waste of time", they declare. "Isn't there...

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We Look to Charities to Raise Money, Then Moan When They Spend It - Why?

(31) Comments | Posted 13 March 2013 | (23:00)

Two things crossed my Twitter feed this week that got me thinking about our relationship with charities.

The first was this story in charity trade magazine Third Sector. In it, philanthropist Gina Miller sets out a series of attacks on the charity sector - lashing out at "careerists"...

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2012: A People Powered Year

(0) Comments | Posted 27 December 2012 | (23:00)

As a memorable year draws to a close, I thought we'd get in the end-of-year-review spirit and look at some of the biggest people-powered campaigns of 2012.

These are a just a few examples people coming together to make a difference in 2012. There are thousands more and every single...

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Evasive on Avoidance: How People Power Put Brands in the Dock

(0) Comments | Posted 13 November 2012 | (13:15)

On Monday this week representatives of Starbucks, Amazon and Google faced MPs to have their companies' tax affairs scrutinised in a quite ferocious manner. Select committees have become a kind of reality show where MPs get to look look tough and funny and deliver a few zingers at...

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Been There, Done That, Refused to Wear the T-shirt: How the Kick It Out Furore Reveals a Challenge Facing Campaigners

(6) Comments | Posted 22 October 2012 | (00:00)

To put it how a player might, football's had a shocker. After a week of abject racism and thuggery, Reading striker Jason Roberts was joined by Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand and other professional footballers in deciding to make a point about racism in football by not wearing the Kick...

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Politics Has a Boos Problem - Time for Rehab

(0) Comments | Posted 6 September 2012 | (15:09)

It's very, very difficult to feel sorry for George Osborne or Theresa May, or indeed any politician who puts themselves up for a photo opportunity that backfires. But I did feel a tiny twinge of sympathy when the boos rang out in the Olympic Stadium as they handed out the...

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A Branson Pickle - Can Online Petitions Shape Democracy?

(2) Comments | Posted 30 August 2012 | (10:47)

As of today, around 165,000 people have signed it. A very quick search throws up over 2,000 bits of media coverage about it. One of the great social injustices of our time? Nope. Richard Branson's lost the franchise for the West Coast Main Line rail service. Despite the...

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