Announcing the Creative Good community
By Mark Hurst • May 6, 2021

This is one of the biggest announcements of my career: I'm inviting you to join Creative Good, a new community to make tech better.

Creative Good is, now, more than a weekly newsletter. It's a community of people who believe tech can create better outcomes in the world, in contrast to the harms caused by Big Tech. We'll journey together to gain awareness about what's happening, call out what's going wrong, and spotlight what's good and deserves more attention.

Who should join Creative Good

My invitation is simple:

• If you feel - as I do - that Big Tech has too much power and needs to be reined in, join us.

• If you want to spotlight and explore positive alternatives out there - tools, teams, thinkers, and viewpoints - please join us.

• Most importantly, if you want to be part of an online community, outside the toxic social media sphere, that is making tech better, I hope you'll join us.

This is also your vote of support for me and my work on Creative Good. If you want me to continue what I'm doing, join Creative Good.

I'm asking for $60 for six months, or $100 for a year. If enough people join, I'll be able to continue my weekly columns - and my development of Good Reports.

And you'll be among friends.

Introducing the Creative Good Forum

I'm really excited to unveil our new community platform, the Creative Good Forum. This is our online hub where Creative Good members can connect, post, and discuss - all on a non-toxic platform well outside the sphere of Big Tech.

The Creative Good Forum is run on Discourse, an open-source platform that is freely available under a GNU license (see Wikipedia) - and it's fully hosted on the Creative Good domain, not in a corporate cloud service somewhere. Here's what it looks like:

When you join, I'll send you a login so that you can start participating right away.

Benefits of joining Creative Good

Join Creative Good and you'll...

• Get exclusive access to the Creative Good Forum
• Connect with other Creative Good members
• Receive a daily or weekly digest email of Forum content
• Show your support for the weekly newsletter/blog post
• Support our continued development of Good Reports
• Join a community that's opposing Big Tech and making tech better

Another benefit is that with your support, I can keep all of this going: writing the newsletter, creating Good Reports. (I also still run Good Todo, supported by its own subscription.)

But I really do need some support to keep this up, and I don't want to have to put up paywalls for the columns and Good Reports. If enough people join Creative Good, I'll be able to keep these resources open to everyone.

A year of preparation

In a way, I've been working toward this launch for the past year: this week is the one-year anniversary of my shift to a weekly schedule for the newsletter and blog. Minus an end-of-year holiday break, I have published, counting this one, 52 columns since May 1 of last year.

The columns over the past year have included...

• A multi-part humor series (from April, May, July, September, and December), showing how memes and creators responded to Covid,

• an explanation of NFTs (here and here),

• the story of the WeWork con job,

• deep-dives on Amazon Ring surveillance and Amazon Halo surveillance and Amazon's surveillance-as-a-service,

• an analysis of Twitter and the stifling of civil debate,

• an analysis of Google and its deceptive communications with New Yorkers,

• three movie reviews (for Speed Cubers, The Social Dilemma, and My Octopus Teacher, which went on to win the Oscar for Best Documentary),

• the fight between Congress and Big Tech (with CEOs and perjury, a congressional antitrust report, the companies' own pathetic defenses, the CEOs preparing, then dancing around the truth in March, and most recently, last week's Senate hearings),

• warnings about accelerating dystopia (here and here and here) and the increasingly criminal behavior within Big Tech,

• alerts about wearable surveillance devices (here and here),

• a discussion of Facebook and Twitter's role in the insurrection, as well as their hollow non-apologies,

• a simple tech ethic for creating better tech, as well as

• a new RSS feed at the request of several readers, and of course,

• last fall's announcement and launch of Good Reports, a list of alternatives to Big Tech.

I hope that the past year has shown you: I feel passionately about raising awareness about tech - what's going wrong, where there are bright spots, and what we can do better. If you want me to continue what I'm doing, join Creative Good.

And there's a bigger opportunity here than one person writing columns and recording interviews. We can do more, learn more, as a community - working to make tech better.

If you want to be a part of it, join Creative Good.

See you on the Forum.


Mark Hurst, founder, Creative Good
Read my non-toxic tech reviews at Good Reports (see the new entry on Best tech podcasts)
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Twitter: @markhurst

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