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Dear Twitter, I Love You

Invisible People wins at sxsw

My friend George says that blogging is just a gateway drug. If that’s the case, then Twitter is heroin.

It’s entirely possible that you got an email from me last night that looked like this:

I need your help on twitter.

Can you ask everyone to put #RefreshGary in their stream once every two hours.

Mark H is a real life friend who is literally changing the landscape. He videos the homeless (he was once homeless) and gives them real faces. Because of what he does a lot of otherwise unknowing people give a lot to homeless shelters, including time.

The contest ends tonight at midnight and there’s $50K in grant money at stake. It’s pepsi and they suck, but money is good.

Mark’s work is at what’s he’s doing matters. He’s helping families.

It’s also possible that you got direct message on twitter that looked like this:

Can I get you to vote #refreshgary all you have to do it tweet the hashtag details at Thank you so much

And so many of you did. I spammed my twitter followers like crazy last night, and I’d do it again. Mark won the Pepsi Refresh Challenge and now he’ll have a $50,000 grant to continue his good work helping the homeless.

I’d love to tell you more about what Mark has done, but I think speaks for itself. Walking down Hollywood Boulevard is different now. I see faces I recognize. It’s easy to ignore the homeless, and I’m not an advocate of the easy way out.

So for all of you who supported Mark last night, to come from behind and beat Mashable, I thank you. I am wildly grateful, my children for the first time ever watched me use twitter and got to see the impact that Social Media can have. You’ve changed Mark’s mission, you’re changing the landscape of Los Angeles, and you’re changing my children.

Obviously, you are changing the world.

15 thoughts on “Dear Twitter, I Love You”

  1. Here Here! I, for one, know the power of the Tweet, so when an opportunity to support a cause like Mark’s and his work with the homeless arises, our community shines, our families are encouraged and we renew our hope for mankind. “Homeless Has a Name” and has a renewed mission to be their voice!

  2. Congratulations Jessica (and Mark too) on using your twitter powers for good and for making many more of us aware of the plight of the homeless. You all are putting the ‘angel’ in Los Angeles. =)

  3. Amazing use of twitter. I voted, encouraged others to as well and I think your friend Mark is a true hero.

    But with all due respect, honey, the ‘Pepsi sucks’ is uncalled for. They may be a ‘brand wrapping themselves in a cause’ but they are putting their money where their mouth is… to the tune of $20 million. Wrapping themselves in a whole hell of a lot of life changing causes like the one your friend Mark is having funded. Foregoing a wasteful Superbowl ad presence and making an effort to change the brand marketing game forever is nothing to sneeze at. Hopefully others will use this case study and cause related marketing will flourish.

    No, they are not a client and no, I do not even drink soda of any kind. I am simply thrilled to see a brand make such a huge attempt to use social media as it is intended to be used. And to make a difference in the lives of so many people.

    Just saying ; )

    1. Well I’m going to disagree Amy with a number of points.
      1. Superbowl ads are not wasteful spending, they have more reach than social media.
      2. Pepsi is crap food. Soda is bad for your body, your children and for the earth. There’s nothing wrong with a treat every now and again, but with kids looking like stuffed sausages, it’s hard for me to care about Pepsi.
      3. I resent and I feel manipulated by Pepsi that I had to send my friends to their sites to explain the hashtag. People listen to me because I don’t bullshit them or promote brands that I don’t believe in. I tried my best to promote and not the soda. At least they allowed the hashtag to not say Pepsi. Of course, we are talking about them here and now.

      Is it a nice attempt at social media? Absolutely.
      Do I wish it was done by a brand that does more good than harm? Absolutely.

      1. As always, and consistent with why I respect you so much even when we disagree – good arguments.
        My counter because we love to do this:
        1. wasteful yes, the reach is only for brand gain. (I know you are from a media family so not wasteful from that perspective : )
        2. Agreed. That is why I don’t serve it in my house.
        3. I don’t see it as manipulating. You are not asking people to buy their brand, you are promoting the good that the brand is doing for others. Not a bad trade-off, again for the amount dollars going towards amazing things.

        As far as being happier to promote a brand you believe in, I totally get that, in a perfect world of course.

        And the kids who look like stuffed sausages, that is bad parenting, not marketing that causes that, no?

        Hey, we could be a great reality show together, couldn’t we?

        Love you madly

  4. Jessica: Wow, you rock – you did an amazing thing for @hardlynormal

    Anyway, I understand how you feel, but then I look what Mark can accomplish with some resources … and it doesn’t bother me quite as much.

  5. I’m glad you put aside your feeling for Pepsi to do this. I’m not the first to say this but have you seen the chemicals in Pepsi. It scared me. That’s why I drink ginger ale…stuff made locally….from actual ginger lol.

    Bravo to invisible people. It’s about sometime someone got something they deserved!

  6. I am SOOO happy to read this! Getting misty for the cause. I remember your posts you had done that you shared with us when Melissa visited you for Dr. Phil. I was moved to tears at how you explained the woman’s living situation. How could anyone not help with such a great cause! HOW AWESOME!!

  7. Jessica,

    Sorry for the delay in writing this. things got crazy and I was pulled in so many directions I lost control of my own time.

    There really are no words to describe how grateful I am for your friendship, love and support. You are an amazing person with a huge heart.

    From the first day we met at a SMCLA event (funny, I went to it not because of social media, but because I saw the event had food and was only $10. At the time I had no income and looked for creative ways to survive) you believed in me, and the homeless cause. Too most, homelessness is not ‘sexy’ unless it’s around the holidays. You started supporting the fight against poverty before many even noticed

    More than anything you have been a real encouragement to keep fighting. Without your support would not be what it is today.

    In 2009 housing programs were started, feeding programs and more. Because of your help 2010 will have more impact helping more people


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