Joan Baez cites Quaker upbring­ing in pres­i­den­tial endorse­ment

From the musician’s Face­book page:

My choice, from an early age, has been to engage in social change from the ground up, using the power of orga­nized non­vi­o­lence. A dis­trust of the polit­i­cal process was firmly in place by the time I was 15. As a daugh­ter of Quak­ers I pledged my alle­giance not to a flag or a nation state but to humankind, the two often hav­ing lit­tle to do with each other.

Philly Quak­ers pio­neered social enter­prise.

Philly Quak­ers pio­neered social enter­prise..

Tony Abra­ham writes:The prac­tice of mak­ing money while mak­ing a social impact is a busi­ness strat­egy largely thought to have orig­i­nated on the brink of the 21st cen­tury with the rise of clean­tech. But the seeds of social enter­prise may have actu­ally been sown in fer­tile Philadel­phia soil two and half cen­turies ago.

“We’re here to bring peo­ple together”: Check out new album by West Philadel­phia con­scious acoustic duo

“We’re here to bring peo­ple together”: Check out new album by West Philadel­phia con­scious acoustic duo. In the West Philly local:

West Philly-based duo City Love, com­prised of Man­tua and Bel­mont res­i­dent musi­cians Ster­ling Duns and Caselli Jor­dan, writes songs to spread the love, make peo­ple move, laugh, and fos­ter dia­logue about social issues.

Dr. Sa’ed Atshan: Teach­ing tol­er­ance, pro­mot­ing peace

Dr. Sa’ed Atshan: Teach­ing tol­er­ance, pro­mot­ing peace. The Philadel­phia Gay News pro­files a Friend and grad­u­ate of the Ramal­lah Friends School:


blockquote>I didn’t have a con­ven­tional coming-of-age there because I got to go to the Ramal­lah School, which empha­sized non-violence and social jus­tice and the light of God in every human being. It was also very rig­or­ous aca­d­e­m­i­cally. It allowed me to escape from a quite-harsh real­ity and gave me hope and promise for a future.</ block­quote>

Quak­ers and the ethics of fixed pric­ing

From a 1956 issue of the then-newly rebranded Friends Jour­nal, an expla­na­tion of the ethics behind pro­vid­ing a fixed price for goods:

Whether the early Quak­ers were con­sciously try­ing to start a social move­ment or not is a moot point. Most likely they were not. They were merely seek­ing to give con­sis­tent expres­sion to their belief in the equal­ity of all men as spir­i­tual sons of God. The Quaker cus­tom of mark­ing a fixed price on mer­chan­dise so that all men would pay the same price is another case in point. Most prob­a­bly Friends did this sim­ply because they wanted to be fair to all who fre­quented their shops and give the sharp bar­gainer no advan­tage at the expense of his less skilled brother. It is unlikely that many Quak­ers adopted fixed prices in the hope of forc­ing their sys­tem on a busi­ness world inter­ested only in profit. That part was just coin­ci­dence, the coin­ci­dence being that Friends hit upon it because of their con­vic­tions; the sys­tem itself was a nat­ural suc­cess.
— Bruce L Pear­son, Feb 4 1956


Lib­eral vs rad­i­cal social wit­ness

Lib­eral vs rad­i­cal social wit­ness. Another install­ment from Steven Davison’s Quaker-pocalypse series:

Lib­eral social action tends to be respect­ful, too, if not even a bit def­er­en­tial. The lib­eral impulse in wit­ness and out­reach seeks not to turn away a seeker who might be made uncom­fort­able by un-reasonable words and actions, or to seem to dis­re­spect the peo­ple with whom we dis­agree. This is not rad­i­cal, and I ques­tion whether it is the path to renewal.

A social media snap­shot

When I first started blog­ging fif­teen years ago, the process was sim­ple. I’d open up a file, hand-edit the HTML code and upload it to a webserver–those were the days! Now every social web ser­vice is like a blog unto itself. The way I have them inter­act is occa­sion­ally dizzy­ing even to me. Recently a friend asked on Face­book what peo­ple used Tum­blr for, and I thought it might be a good time to sur­vey my cur­rent web ser­vices. These shift and change con­stantly but per­haps oth­ers will find it an inter­est­ing snap­shot of hooked-together media circa 2012.

The glue services you don’t see:

  • Google Reader. I still try to keep up with about a hun­dred blogs, mostly spir­i­tual in nature. The old tried-and-true Google Reader still orga­nizes it all, though I often read it through the Android app News­Rob.
  • Diigo. This took the place of the clas­sic social book­mark­ing site Deli­cious when it had a near-death expe­ri­ence a few years ago (it’s never come back in a form that would make me recon­sider it). When­ever I see some­thing inter­est­ing I want to share, I post it here, where it gets cross-posted to my Twit­ter and Tum­blr sites. I’ve book­marked over 4500 sites over the last seven-plus years. It’s an essen­tial archive that I use for remem­ber­ing sites I’ve liked in the past. Diigo book­marks that are tagged “Quaker” get sucked into an alter­nate route where they become edi­tor fea­tures for Quak​erQuaker​.org.
  • Pocket (for­merly Read it Later). I’m in the envi­able posi­tion that many of my per­sonal inter­ests over­lap with my pro­fes­sional work. While work­ing, I’ll often find some inter­est­ing Quaker arti­cle that I want to read later. Hence Pocket, a ser­vice that will instantly book­mark the site and make it avail­able for later read­ing.
  • Flip­board is a great mobile app that lets you read arti­cles on top­ics you like. Com­bine it with Twit­ter lists and you have a per­son­al­ized read­ing list. I use this every day, mostly for blogs and news sites I like to read but don’t con­sider so essen­tial that I need to catch every­thing they pub­lish.
  • Ifttt​.com. A handy ser­vice named after the log­i­cal con­struct “IF This, Then That,” Ifttt will take one social feed and cross-post it to another under var­i­ous con­di­tions. For exam­ple, I have Diigo posts cross-post to Twit­ter and Flickr posts cross­post to Face­book. Some of the Ifttt “recip­ies” are behind the scenes, like the one that takes every post on Word­Press and adds it to my pri­vate Ever­note account for archival pur­poses.

The Public-Facing Me:

  • Word­Press (Quak​er​ran​ter​.org). The blog you’re read­ing. It orig­i­nally started as a Move­able Type-powered blog when that was the hip blog­ging plat­form (I’m old). A few years ago I went through a painstak­ing process to bring it over to Word­Press in such a way that its Disqus-powered com­ments would be pre­served.
  • Twit­ter. I’ve long loved Twit­ter, though like many techies I’m wor­ried about the direc­tion it’s headed. They’ve recently locked most of the ser­vices that read Twit­ter feeds and reprocess it. If this weren’t hap­pen­ing, I’d use it as a default chan­nel for just about every­thing. In the mean­time, only about half of my tweets are direct from the service–the remain­der are auto-imports from Diigo, Insta­gram, etc.
  • Tum­blr (Quack​Quack​.org). I like Tum­blr although my site there (quack​quack​.org) gets very few direct vis­its. I mostly use it as a “links blog” of inter­est­ing things I find in my inter­net wan­der­ings. Most items come in via Diigo, though if I have time I’ll sup­ple­ment things with my own thoughts or pic­tures. Most peo­ple prob­a­bly see this via the side­bar of the Quak­er­Ran­ter site.
  • Face­book. It may seem I post a lot on Face­book, but 95 per­cent of what goes up there is imported from some other ser­vice. But, because more peo­ple are on Face­book than any­where else, it’s the place I get the most com­ments. I gen­er­ally use it to reply to com­ments and see what friends are up to. I don’t like Face­book per se because of its pater­nal­ist con­trols on what can be seen and its recent moves to force con­tent providers to pay for vis­i­bil­ity for their own fan pages.
  • Flickr. Once the dar­ling of photo sites, Flickr’s been the heart­break of the hip­ster set more times than I can remem­ber. It has a ter­ri­ble mobile app and always lags behind every other ser­vice but I have over 4000 pic­tures going back to 2005. This is my photo archive (much more so than the fail­ing disk dri­ves on a suc­ces­sion of lap­tops).

Honorable Mentions

  • I use Foursquare all the time but I don’t think many peo­ple notice it.
  • Right now, most of my pho­tos start off with the mobile app Insta­gram, handy despite the now-tired con­ceit of its square for­mat (cute when it was the artsy under­dog, cloy­ing now that it’s the billion-dollar main­stream ser­vice).
  • Like most of the planet I use Youtube for videos. I like Vimeo but Youtube is par­tic­u­larly con­ve­nient when shoot­ing from a Google-based phone and it’s where the view­ers are.
  • I gave up my old cus­tom site at Mar​tinKel​ley​.com for a Fla​vors​.me account. Its flex­i­bil­ity lets me eas­ily link to the ser­vices I use.

When I write all this out it seems so com­pli­cated. But the aim is con­ve­nience: a sim­ple few key­strokes that feed into ser­vices dis­sem­i­nate infor­ma­tion across a series of web pres­ences.