Fight for the Future Defends Net Neutrality with Programmable Voice and SMS
“It’s the free speech fight of our generation.” Evan Greer, Deputy Director at Fight for the Future, doesn’t mince words about the importance of net neutrality. “We see [the rollback of net neutrality] as something that will determine not only the future of what the internet looks like, but what the future of what our society will look like.”
Battle for the Net
Net neutrality is a deceptively simple concept with broad implications. Essentially, it’s the principle that internet service providers (ISPs) should treat content equally. Without net neutrality, ISPs can treat the internet like T.V., where the voices you hear are those that can afford to pay for access, whether that’s your latest Netflix binge, a startup’s homepage, or independent journalism. “Net neutrality protections are ...
The Bike Project Delivers Critical Mobility to Refugees in the UK
Jem Stein is on a mission to get every refugee on a bike.
Each year over 13,000 people seek asylum in London. Many arrive fleeing war, religious persecution, and government oppression. Once in the UK, asylum seekers face new challenges adapting to their new home. Among these, a lack of affordable transportation creates a virtual wall between refugees and basic resources like food shelters and health services. Led by founder Jem Stein, The Bike Project is breaking down this barrier, two wheels at a time.
The Difference a Bike Makes
Jem’s mission began after he witnessed the importance of transportation to refugees firsthand. “I mentored a Darfuri refugee named Adam at university and saw the difficulties he faced getting around London.”
Government accommodations for asylum seekers typically reside on the ...
Notifica provides Urgent Support for Immigrants with the Touch of a Button
In deportation events, every minute counts. Immigration enforcement raids can happen at any time, anywhere. When an arrest occurs, family members get separated without being able to tell loved ones what happened, or let their employers know where they are. And connected to each person directly affected by a deportation are communities around the country that lose friends, family members, coworkers, and teachers.
There are approximately 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States and 800,000 who are at risk of losing legal residency status currently provided under the DREAM Act. For these people, connections to their communities, families, and attorneys are essential to ensure that they receive fair treatment during and immediately following an immigration raid. Through their bilingual mobile app, Notifica, technologists at United We Dream seek to ensure ...
Celebrating Women Who Drive #Tech4Good
To celebrate Women’s History Month and the awesome work of women in the Twilio community, we wanted to take a minute to recognize some of our personal heroes. This is in no way an exhaustive list, but a small cross section of amazing developers, entrepreneurs, CEOs, and all around badasses that are building the future of social impact through communications technology.
All of us here at Twilio are grateful for the opportunity to work with such inspiring people and look forward to seeing the history each of them continue to make every day.
Led by CEO and founder, Meena Palaniappan, Atma Connect enables people in Indonesia to share real-time information about issues affecting their communities, including floods, fires, jobs, and education. With a text-based alert system, users can stay ...
Age UK fights loneliness among older people with a telephone befriending service
Nearly 1.2 million older people in the UK say they’re chronically lonely. Roughly 3.9 million say that TV is their main form of company. And some 200,000 haven’t had a conversation with a friend or family member in more than a month.
London-based charity Age UK set out to reduce chronic loneliness in 2005 with its Call in Time service. Once a week for 30 minutes, Call in Time connected older people with volunteers over the phone, providing companionship, advice, and support to the people who needed it most.
Although Call in Time had helped thousands of people, the service’s manual call system was labor intensive and couldn’t scale to reach the number of people Age UK wanted to help. It plateaued at 3,500 ...
Band Together Bay Area concert to support North Bay relief efforts
This year has witnessed an onslaught of natural disasters around the world. Here in California, we’ve seen our neighbors in the North Bay sustain the most destructive and deadliest firestorm in California history. The fires have burned an estimated 200,000 acres and 6,000 homes in Sonoma, Napa, Mendocino and Lake Counties, displacing thousands of residents.
In response to damage wrought by these fires, Twilio is joining Tipping Point and a coalition of Bay Area business and community leaders to launch Band Together Bay Area, a fundraising initiative to support relief efforts and long-term recovery in the region. The funds raised by Band Together Bay Area will go into an emergency fund established by Tipping Point Community and will be directed to North Bay community foundations, service providers, and government partners supporting the low-income communities hardest hit by the fires.
We’re kicking off this effort with a ...
Top 5 Peer to Peer Fundraising Tips with Team Rubicon and Twilio.org
Recently, fundraising trailblazer, Matt Scott of Team Rubicon, joined up with Twilio.org for the Peer to Peer World Virtual Conference to discuss best practices for creating sticky fundraising campaigns that drive big results.
As the resident fundraising guru at Team Rubicon, a nonprofit that deploys US veterans in support of disaster relief efforts, Matt helped grow Team Rubicon’s annual revenue from $250k to over $15 million – $9 million for Hurricane Harvey alone. So it’s safe to say Matt knows a thing or two about creating successful fundraising campaigns.
During the conversation, Matt offered his top 5 tips for peer to peer fundraising campaigns that generate strong conversions and create long term relationships with supporters:
- Make Your Fundraiser Time-Bound
As a rule of thumb, Matt finds that 4-6 weeks is ...
TxDOT Cuts Down the Commute with Traffic Updates via Programmable SMS and Notify
Can a text message create a safer, shorter commute? Researchers at the Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI) think so, and they’re proving it to thousands of Texas drivers each day through a support contract with TxDOT to bring innovation and best practices to a major highway reconstruction effort.
Some 60,000 to 132,000 vehicles travel the hundred-mile stretch of I-35 from Hillsboro to Salado daily. An eight-year, $2.1 billion project is currently underway to increase mobility and facilitate economic development along the corridor, as well as make commutes safer for Texans. During construction, getting timely, accurate information to travelers about slow-downs and traffic incidents has been a primary goal.
As part this communications effort, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) recently implemented real-time alerts about construction-related issues via text ...
Good Call Supports Through the Arrest Process When One Call Must Connect
Imagine you’re arrested and your cell phone is taken away. You have only few minutes to make one phone call through a public line to a number you know by heart. Who do you call? Have you memorized their number? Do you have a qualified lawyer available to represent you?
These are the questions that four social tech entrepreneurs set out to solve with Good Call, a free 24/7 legal hotline serving New York City’s Bronx borough.
“We heard dozens of stories from people arrested for either really trivial reasons, like hopping a turnstile or forgetting to pay a ticket, or for no reason at all—just for fitting ‘the description,’” explains Gabe Leader-Rose, co-founder and project manager of Good Call. “They all said how hard it was to ...
Atma Connect gets people to safety fast with text-based disaster warnings
Massive floods are common during Indonesia’s monsoon season. Houses and roads are often inundated with floodwaters, and extreme weather sometimes displaces thousands of residents and causes dozens of fatalities each year. Government early warning systems exist but are unreliable, rarely reaching those living in the poorest and most vulnerable communities. However, most Indonesians have a mobile phone, making SMS communication a natural fit for critical communications in the region. Realizing this, Atma Connect turned to text-based communications to deliver locally relevant alerts to its users.
The organization’s flagship tool is AtmaGo, a web- and Android-based social networking app designed to foster neighbor-to-neighbor communication in traditionally underserved urban communities. Users have taken to AtmaGo to share real-time information about floods and other disasters, help community members find jobs, keep others informed ...