Insights to Power Social Good

The Wireless Industry- An Example of Working for the Common Good

Posted by Elizabeth Same on Oct 25, 2013 1:31:00 PM


By Jenifer Snyder, Executive Director, The mGive Foundation

Work together like the wireless carriers

At a time when collaboration sometimes seems in short supply, we wanted to highlight the example set by the wireless industry, who have been coming together for 30 years now, to create and preserve the common ground of  the wireless system that is now so central to all aspects of our daily lives.  The wireless industry’s achievement is proof that collaboration among rivals is not only possible but that working together can truly benefit the world. 

Today, we can send text messages to family members and friends all across the world.  Imagine, however, if you could only text family and friends who shared the same wireless carrier as you?  Inconvenient to be sure, inconceivable given the dependence we all have on our mobile phones to stay connected through messaging, the Internet, email and various apps. 

Yet we can communicate with each other seamlessly because wireless carriers put their competitive differences aside to allow true innovation.  Imagine that you could only conduct cell phone calls within your home network?  That would almost render cell phones useless -- but the wireless carriers joined together and made sure that no matter where you are in the world- you can text your mom to let her know that you are still alive, and send her a few pictures just to remove all doubt!

We have come a long way from the days of Zack Morris and his amazingly cool (and ginourmous) cellular phone.  Innovation and collaboration have taken us far.  Today we rely upon mobile devices, networks and the wireless carriers.  Imagine if the wireless carriers refused to compromise and work to a happy settlement so that you couldn’t call or text a different provider.  Or worse yet, imagine if your wireless carrier shut down -- how would you live without the ability to text a friend, read your email or surf Pinterest for 24 hours?  It would be a dark world.

We owe the wireless leaders and pioneers that came together to establish our current wireless world a debt of gratitude because they allow us to be better connected than ever before.  It’s an example we should follow, which is one reason why mGive is supporting #GivingTuesday on December 3rd – a day when America comes together to give. 

#GivingTuesday is a national day of giving – a day set aside, following Black Friday and Cyber Monday – to refocus on giving and social good.  Last year was the first year for #GivingTuesday and it fueled marked increases in social involvement for organizations that participated.  mGive will soon be sharing our suggestions for how mobile can help your organization benefit from #GivingTuesday – watch for details to be shared in this space.  In the spirit of collaboration, I hope your organization will be part of this important day and leverage the wireless matrix built by some amazing pioneers.

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 Jenifer SnyderJenifer Snyder is Executive Director of The mGive Foundation.  She brings years of leadership experience in the mobile industry to the position. Previously, Jenifer was a founder and General Counsel for 9 Squared, Inc., a mobile content and services company subsequently acquired by the Zed Group. She left Zed in 2007 and started building the mobile channel for social and charitable effort, later forming The mGive Foundation.

Topics: Strategies and Tactics, Innovation and Creativity, year-end, Mobile History

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