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Randy Paynter

As the founder of Care2 and the PetitionSite, Randy is a pioneer of online advocacy. Randy launched Care2 in 1998 to empower individuals to take collective action in support of social and environmental causes. Today, Care2 helps over 45 million members stand together, start online petitions, and share stories that inspire action.

Author's Posts

Slacktivism: Why Snopes got it Wrong About Internet Petitions

"It is always with the best intentions that the worst work is done," observed Oscar Wilde. And so it goes with an unfortunate entry on Snopes.com (a site usually quite good about debunking urban legends), that characterizes "internet petitions" as "slacktivism", a pejorative suggesting that activism is worthless if it doesn't require considerable effort.

I usually ignore such commentary since naysayers are a dime a dozen, but that particular post gets a lot of attention: it's one of the top search results for "petitions," is a favorite among cynics, and no doubt has turned off many who might otherwise have taken action. At a time when civic engagement is more important than ever, it's a tragedy that this ill-conceived post has disempowered so many people.

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