I’m a sucker for good print advertising. The kind that makes you stop and take a closer look before turning the page. Even ones so good you can’t wait to show someone. Of course, the really best ones are those that get you to do more than look and sing their praises. Really good and compelling advertising makes you take action.
In this conversation, Mark Sedway, Project Director of the Philanthropy Awareness Initiative (PAI) and Communications Network Contributor Susan Herr, explore the challenges foundations face in informing both the larger public, and in particular, “influential” Americans about the many important contributions philanthropy makes to the nation and world. That said, Sedway says new research shows that there is a growing interest among key members of the public to learn more about the work of foundations. As a result, Sedway asks, will more foundation leaders — including trustees — embrace this opportunity and become vocal ambassadors who aggressively make the case for how philanthropy can help drive change in partnership with others, such as policymakers?
It was funny the first time I saw it, and it does make a point. But if Sal Alaimo succeeds at delivering his film on philanthropy, I have high hopes we won’t ever again have to watch people make fools of themselves when asked to speak into the camera and say what they think philanthropy is or does.
One of the popular features of the Communications Network’s website is our “Jargon Finder,” which is filled with what have been dubbed as “bad words for good” — everything from misused terms to confusing phrases that interfere with the ability of foundations and nonprofits to communicate clearly and concisely. The list, originally compiled by Network member Tony Proscio, who also wrote the commentary on each of the words, unfortunately is not static. Thanks to contributions from readers, it continues to grow.
Every time I hear about another foundation making plans to spend down its endowment, my first thought is something along the lines of “Gee, I wonder why they’re throwing in the towel?”
That was not anything close to the reaction I had after hearing from the Quixote Foundation about its plans to go out of business by 2017.