Personal Blog of Joe Brewer

Launching the Climate Meme Project!

In Collaboration, Design Science, Human Behavior, Social Change on November 16, 2012 at 2:52 pm

This project is a joint effort of Cognitive Policy Works and DarwinSF.

The Climate Meme Project is a crowd funded, open collaboration initiative to reveal the meme landscape for climate action.

You can support it here.

By contributing to this project, you will help spread the ideas that can challenge climate denial and the dogmatic beliefs of skeptics who have stalled out a global response to the greatest environmental threat ever to confront humanity. We are experts in the dynamics of culture—specializing in the study of memes, political frames, social networks, and brand marketing—with a passion for applying our craft for the betterment of humanity.

So if you are frustrated by the lack of forward motion on global warming, concerned about the world your children will inherit, and ready to see us all reach a global tipping point in awareness and all the collective actions that follow, this project is for you!

Here’s what you can help make happen:

Initiate a massive research project to capture all memes that help or hinder the climate cause;

Discover ways to talk about climate change that transform the discourse and get us out of the communication rut that has plagued the movement for decades;

Create a Climate Meme Toolkit that will be freely available to all climate activists around the world;
Strengthen bonds across the network of climate advocacy groups who can coordinate their communication and engagement strategies for scaled impact.

Help humanity reach the global tipping point that unleashes our collective drive to transform the global economy and safeguard the future health of our fragile planet.

Here is Joe Brewer introducing the project:

Lazlo Karafiath shares his perspective on the project here:

We are serious about making this happen. And we can’t do it without your help. Not only will we need to pool the resources enabling us to dedicate our time and expertise to this cause, but we must recruit an army of meme hunters to help us scale this research effort quickly—including you—because time is running out and none of us can afford to wait any longer.

Please throw a few bucks our way. Spread the word to your friends. And volunteer to join us as a climate warrior who helps the right memes to spread across the conversational landscape of the world while marginalizing those harmful memes that stand in our way.

Project Timeline and Budget

We launched this project in mid-November and will go through the following stages:

Stage 1: Run crowdfunding campaign (Nov 15 – Dec 15)

Stage 2: Collect memes (Nov 15 – Jan 15)

Stage 3: Analysis(Jan 15 – Feb 15)

Stage 4: Meme dissemination (Feb 15 onward)

Our methodology is a multi-phase data gathering process that includes statistical analysis of the meme landscape revealed by the data. A rough outline can be seen in this schematic diagram.

The budget for this project will enable us to manage this multi-stage process, ensure data quality in the collection of memes, conduct in-depth analysis of the meme landscape, and write up conclusions in report and presentation formats.

We have sought $20,000 through our crowdfunding campaign to support a team of researchers throughout this three month period. Since funding will come from the crowd, the crowd will own the results — released under creative commons licensing in the spirit of open source software.

Recruiting Meme Hunters!

Perhaps the most exciting part of this project is that we are calling upon the crowd to help us gather memes. In this tutorial, Lazlo explains what memes are and how you can gather them for us to help make a bigger impact:

You can help us make this project a success by finding memes related to global warming and sending them our way. Do this by any of the following:

1. Email them to us at climate@darwinsf.com

2. Submit them via the contact form on this website

3. Tweet them with the hashtag #climatememe

We’ll gather them up and add them to our open source database so that they are included in the statistical analysis. Go forth and hunt some memes!

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