'Social media helped mobilise Earth Hour' | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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'Social media helped mobilise Earth Hour'

mumbai Updated: Apr 28, 2012 01:35 IST
Nikhil M Ghanekar
Nikhil M Ghanekar
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

Less than a month after 'Earth Hour 60+' was celebrated across the globe on March 31, its co-founder and executive director, Andy Ridley, spoke about how the popular environmental campaign cut across borders using social media at an event in the city on Friday.

Ridley pointed out how the private, intra-company communication software Yammer was used effectively to keep in touch with World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) colleagues, to keep abreast with Earth Hour campaigns. He also said that Facebook helped the campaign to get in touch with masses on a personal level. Using social network service Yammer and popular platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, the Earth Hour core team of eight people along with a network of WWF managed to reach out to two billion people across the globe working from Sydney, Australia.

"Social media has enabled the masses to localise the campaign, which is open-source in nature. In Brazil, its used for the Amazon's conservation, in China it's about cleaner air and here in India is about energy saving," Ridley told HT. Ridley was in the city to speak at the MTV Youth Marketing Forum.

The 'Earth Hour 60+' campaign started in 2007 and involves switching off non-essential lights and electrical appliances for an hour between 8:30 pm to 9:30 pm on the last Saturday in March.

Speaking on the criticism and polar reactions the campaign attracts due to its symbolic nature, Ridley said, "It is shamelessly symbolic and it is meant to be. We are aware of the campaign's limitations. Earth Hour is designed to essentially provoke thought and in the end, the responsibility of bringing changes lies with individuals."