Responses to frequently asked questions about AidSource. This page is updated periodically, so be sure to check back occasionally.
1) What is the name of this network? The name of this network is AidSource: The Humanitarian Social Network. Or you can just call us AidSource, for short. We're working on our SEO and page-ranking (takes time), but you can get to us if you Google “AidSource." Better yet, join AidSource. Even better, join and bookmark us. Best option of all, set http://aidsource.ning.com as your homepage.
2) Who owns and manages AidSource? AidSource was created, founded, and is run by three well-known aid bloggers:
In addition to the three founders, a growing number of pieces of AidSource are administered and managed by member-volunteers (see here).
3) What is the purpose and mission of AidSource? The purpose of AidSource is ultimately to improve aid. Yes, we know that’s a tall order. We’re not looking for sweeping changes overnight, but one thing we know for certain is that getting together, across distance and agency lines, is essential to making that happen. Mingling and having fun and virtual networking are all good things to do, too – and we’ve intentionally built these opportunities into AidSource. But our overarching mission/goal/vision (or whatever aid jargony term you want to add here) is to see AidSource become a nexus of positive change in the world of humanitarian relief and development.
4) Who is the intended audience/membership of AidSource? We do not restrict who can join AidSource and set up a profile: anyone can join, and we have intentionally made the majority of content on this network visible online to non-members. This said, AidSource is meant for and will probably be of most interest to those in or with strong, sustained interest in the humanitarian aid industry. More specifically, this network is intended primarily for professional relief and development workers – industry insiders – as well as for those in adjacent fields such as education (we have sections dedicated specifically to the needs and interests of students and educators), research and journalism.
In general it is our intention to curate and develop content and discussion on this network that reflect advanced levels of technical competency and professional understanding of humanitarian practice and issues (including those spaces dedicated to humour and aid-related frivolity). We will use our control access as admins to moderate content and discussion on this network accordingly.
5) Who sponsors AidSource? At this point, no one beyond the three founders. We are paying from our own pockets the costs associated with, and donating the time necessary to administer and maintain this network. AidSource is our labor of love.
6) Will AidSource accept sponsorship? At some point, yes. We’re developing our framework and terms for sponsorship and plan to publish those in due course. In the meantime, if you are interested in sponsoring AidSource, please send us email using the email function in AidSource.
7) How can I create a new working group? Only admins can create groups (called “working groups” on AidSource). Any member can add a new discussion within an existing working group. If there is a working group that you think should be here, but that isn’t, please let us know (email is cool) – there’s a good chance that we’ll add it.
8) I have, like, 37 different social media accounts. Why do I need AidSource? Great question. We think that AidSource meets a number of needs/fills some specific gaps in the humanitarian aid and development-related social mediaverse. We hope you agree! Also, be sure to check out this page.
9) If I have an AidSource account, can just anyone see my info? There are two ways to control which of your data are visible. First, you control the information in your profile, and you can always go back and edit it later. Second, you can adjust your profile visibility so that it can be viewed by “anyone”, “members”, or “my friends.” Go to “Settings”, then “privacy” to view your options. See also this note.
10) Can I cross-post between Twitter, Facebook and AidSource? Yes, mostly. You can cross-post from AidSource to Twitter and Facebook, but not the other way. See this note.
11) There are a lot of social network platforms out there. Why did you go with a Ning network for AidSource? Yes, we’re aware of a great diversity of opinion on the various options. No platform was/is perfect. In the end we went with Ning because it was the most immediately user-friendly to non-internet/tech savvy aid workers (like us).
12) Are you open to suggestions for improvement? Yes, we are open to comments, suggestions, questions and concerns from AidSource members. We prefer that you use the member feedback forum for this, but you can also send us email using the mail function in AidSource. We promise to read and take seriously every concern and complaint, but we cannot promise to follow every suggestion.
13) I want to volunteer to take on an administrative role in one of the working groups or features of AidSource. Do you take volunteers, and if so, how can I? Great! And yes, we take volunteers. We want to see members (like you) play an increasing role in managing and moderating content and discussion here on AidSource. If you’re interested in volunteering, send us a message using AidSource email. As with suggestions, we will consider every offer seriously, but we cannot promise a role for everyone who volunteers. See also this note.