When Holly and I decided to (re)join forces, fire up the factory, and unleash Shiny New Toy on the world, we rooted our principles on many of the same principles found in the open source software community and the emerging – make that exploding – world of social media communications. Like those two outstanding communities, we value the sharing and exchange of knowledge and information.
In fact, plenty (if not all) of our success can be traced back to the knowledge we have gained from the communities we inhabit online and offline. The blogs we read, the software we use, and the though leaders we have come to know in recent years have all played a critical part in shaping how Shiny New Toy plays with others.
However, you can only be a good citizen and be part of community if you are contributing to it. At the beginning of 2008, I personally felt like I was doing too much sponging without giving back. Thus, I made a conscious decision to do what I could to do more. My mantra for 2008, one that I have on instilled upon Shiny New Toy, is to give back.
Return the favors. Share the knowledge. Contribute. Give back to gain more.
So how exactly is Shiny New Toy giving back? Our recent Solstice Unplugged party at Gray Whale Cove was one example. We’re also working with the Society of New Communications Research and Social Media Club – two wonderful non-profit organizations full of incredible thought leaders. Though leaders that have provided us so much. And we’re actively working on a project for the WordPress community. More on all of this in due time.
It’s always exciting to be part of something. But it becomes even more rewarding when you try to put as much into it as you are getting out of it.