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  • Mainly about engagement and collaboration using social media and events, with some asides on living in London. More about David Wilcox and also how the blog started.
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Comments

Great review... always worth being wary of things that celebrate greatness way too much.

Plus I never got that whole "Latest Members" thing on site front pages. What relevance is it?

Yikes, it might be the best site in the world, but it doesn't seem to really chime with British social sensibilities. I'd go red at the face with the idea of adding myself to a site with a name like that. The hubris!

Mmm...environmentally friendly hotel, great...have to fly to Thailand to get there. An unintended irony or more evidence of the cognitive dissonance prevalent in 'green' thinking these days?

I thought you were deeply diplomatic about it and respect your positive feedback, and love your narrative style; particularly as you uncovered that it is clearly a marketing agency marketing itself through a consultancy driven social network 'product'.

I simply *love* the Thailand convention idea; Chris Morris himself might have made it all up.

Which brings me to a bigger point which is related but not directly to igenius - consider it a reflection on the alarming state of 'The Green dollar':

The whole 'green as a market' thing is picking up so much pace that it is being stretched too far, the 'ethical' backbone to it is also becoming weakend - rabid entrepeneurialsim is using 'green' to drive wedges into new markets under the disguise of being good guys. It has Bill Hicks written all over it - 'there's a market in the angry dollar'.

This is deeply worrying as the sales people and their inane commission culture gradually sap the honesty out of 'green' and therefore 'ethical', hanging a 'brand' (for want of a better word but I mean brand in its true sense) out to dry, wringing the marketing potential out it and moving on to the next zeitgeist when it comes, leaving a hollow dis-illusioned hole where there used to be values, behaviours, benchmarks and beliefs.

Last week we saw that of all the carbon offsetting schemes springing up like mushrooms, only a tiny minority actually adhere to any benchmarks. Of these we are still wrestling with the fact that it encourages people to pay a ludicrously small amount of money (the marketeers tell the product managers not to put people off with the real cost I am sure). And those schemes focus on planting trees in the 'developed' world, let alone social development in the 'developing'... It's guilt assuation I'm sorry to say.

Anyone hear about Prince Charles flying to the U.S. with his 20 strong entourage to accept an environmental award soon? Does that sound like hip hop or UK West Country environmentalism?

Perhaps the bigger picture is why these ambitious (and I'm sure well meaning) marketing driven efforts ring rather hollow; they are 'solutions', rooted in commission culture, rather than organic, bottom-up, connected works sharing common values.

The more I see of what is going on around us, the more Chris Macrae's sometimes elusive stream of conciousness makes sense to me.

You seem to have completely missed the point about this website and what it is trying to achieve. First of all the name ‘i-genius’ may not be for everyone but most can see past that and just appreciate the website for what it sets out to do – enabling people around the world to talk to each other about a wide variety of social projects and initiatives.

Secondly concerning your cynicism of the background and other initiatives lead by the two directors – Tommy and Mike. Their collective experience only serves to justify the reasons behind their interest in setting up a social entrepreneur website. Aspects of the marketing / youth / health / drugs and social projects they have been involved with adds credibility to what they are trying to achieve with i-genius. I have met both of them and worked with them on a number of projects and their enthusiasm and altruistic passion for people and opportunities to network and share ideas always comes first.

And thirdly as the website is in its infancy there will always be opportunities to improve it and as the community grows so will mentoring and interaction with members.

I have already offered technical resources and environmental support to STEP via the i-genius site and would envisage that their conference in Thailand would be web-based with global users watching live links, asking questions and interacting with local social entrepreneurs and residents.

Have been thinking about my comment and think I was being a bit over the top and 'December in the UK'ish; tarring everything with one brush. Haven't done any deeper looking into it, but wanted to say that - might have been feeling a bit jaded :-)

Mark - thanks for providing a more positive perspective on i-genius, and I'm really glad to hear about the connection you have made.
I don't doubt the aim of connecting people - I'm just not clear what i-genius offers that other sites don't - a point others have made.
Tommy and Mike do indeed seem to be involved in very worthwhile projects. But why is that not on the site, together with clear statements about partners and funders?
My initial cynicism was prompted by this lack background information, and a press release the style of which suggested those involved were not too familiar with social networking. And what seemed a spurious claim to be launching at GEM.
OK - maybe a bit too cynical, and as Ed says we can all get a bit grey. However, I think there are important issues in here, and I would really to have this discussion with Tommy and Mike. That's not possible on the site unless you are prepared to sign up and be labelled an i-genius. I think social networking is about conversations ... so Tommy, Mike, let's have one. Your place or mine.

It's very interesting to read these comments especially when I've just started a site similar to igenius and am a member of igenius.
The reason we started network2012 was to help ourselves i.e. provide ourselves with an income doing something we enjoy, while at the same time helping others. We're a social enterprise whose profits through membership fees will go towards providing bursaries for, in the main, people who are financially excluded.
Now we may have a job convincing others our motives are honourable I accept that but people will be able to see through our accounts whether we do as we say with our profits.
Whether there is a need for such sites I think is obvious as we're here and will be tested in whether we become profitable or not by the members we attract.
I can't speak for igenius but I'm sure that if anyone wanted to remove himself or herself from the site it would only take an email to say so and that's not too difficult is it?
Also these sites are quite new and mistakes will be made as they are in all businesses. If we make too many too often then we go out of business that's the price we will pay.
Surely in the spirit of what igenius and network2012 are trying to do an email to discover the answers to questions would be more appropriate thereby giving people a chance to respond and perhaps rectify mistakes they may have made.
Call me naive but I believe in the good intent of igenius as I do in the good intent of myself and my business partner in starting Network 2012 and I'd rather contribute to the process of the growth of social enterprise than otherwise. Needless to say I found the original comment on igenius extremely cynical.

Martin - thanks for joining in this thread, and I hope you are able to develop a successful venture. I think that the key to balancing enterprise and social benefit is transparency, and that was one of the problems I had with igenius. On your site, I'm sure people would be interested in who Martin and Tom are, for example

Thanks for the good wishes David and I think you're right on both counts!

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