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May 21

Tweeting for a Great Cause

This doesn't have a lot to do with wine. But it does have to do with Taste of Cincinnati, which is how I'm justifying the post. Truthfully, I'm a sucker for a great cause and that's why it's here.

I originally posted this on Bub.blicio.us, a Silicon Valley-based technology blog for which I'm a contributing writer.

The latest national news out of Cincinnati is what's being billed as The World's Largest Tweet-Up. I'm not sure if that's accurate on a number of levels, but it doesn't matter. It's good marketing for a good cause, and a great example of a non-profit using social media to raise awareness.


Last July, musician Katie Reider passed away at age 30 from a rare form of cancer that attacked the left side of her face. It left her blind in one eye and unable to do what she did best – sing. Katie was a local musician for us, but she'd been on the national scene as well, and was one of those artists spotlighted on WB shows like Dawson's Creek.

500Kin365.org, was created in May of 2008 with the help of Katie Reider's loyal fanbase to reconnect and introduce 500,000 people to Katie Reider, her music and her story over the next year, as she continued to undergo treatment. The site took off, and the goal is to introduce 500,000 people to her music. Two sets of Katie's songs can be downloaded for only $1 each on the site and 100% of the proceeds to go help pay off the family's exorbitant medical bills.

Now for the Tweet-up. About 500,000 people attend our annual Taste of Cincinnati event on Memorial Day weekend. Until last year, the Katie Reider Band had entertained at the food festival for almost 10 years. This year, Taste of Cincinnati will spotlight the Katie Reider Stage, presented by Avalon and Metromix.com Cincinnati at P&G Gardens, as the first stage in the history of Cincinnati named for a pioneer of gay and lesbian rights and as the first stage in the annals of Taste of Cincinnati named for a performer. I told you we'd come a long way.

The goal is for everyone to tweet awareness of the whole deal. 500,000 attendees might equal 500,000 downloads of Katie's music. Called 3 Tweets 4 Katie, the campaign uses the shorthand Katie used in her everyday life.

Tens of thousands of tweets are expected to fill the Twitterverse over the Memorial Day weekend in honor Reider's life and music. The Friends of Katie Reider encourage peeps around the world to adopt new Twitterminology and embrace a Reider family tradition: "3" means "I love you" and "4" means "I love you, too." With tweets limited to 140 characters on Twitter, organizers believe the Reider family tradition of "3" and "4" may likely gain a global following as new Twitter shorthand.

Remember, you don't have to be at Taste of Cincinnati to participate. You can tweet directly from the 3 Tweets 4 Katie site and show your love for the cause. Your tweet will help expose other people to Katie's music and help achieve those 500,000 downloads. Or you can just spend $1 and download a set of her songs.


Here's a a YouTube clip from Katie Reider's last show:

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Posted by Michelle at 1:33 pm in Charity Benefits, Cincinnati | Permalink | Comments ()

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