Viral Giving: Bringing Philanthropy into the Social Networking Age
Edward Norton, Actor & Philanthropist
in conversation with Jason Tanz, WIRED
NExTWORK is a one-day, interdisciplinary conference that will feature world-renowned business leaders, technologists, and thinkers exploring the promise and peril of the network's future, as well as the most pressing digital issues and opportunities today.
Edward Norton is an award-winning actor, director, and producer who has starred in more than 20 films, including Primal Fear, Rounders, American History X, Fight Club, The Italian Job,
Kingdom of Heaven, The Illusionist, The Painted Veil, and The Incredible Hulk.
A committed social and environmental activist, he recently co-founded Crowdrise, a website that brings the power of crowdsourcing and the fun of social networking to fund-raising and volunteerism. In less than a year, Crowdrise has channeled millions of dollars to charitable causes; its founders were named to Barron's 2010 list of the 25 Most Important People in Philanthropy.
Norton serves on the President's Committee for the Arts and Humanities and was named UN Goodwill Ambassador for Biodiversity. He is also a trustee of the Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust, Friends of the Highline, Signature Theater Company, and Enterprise Community Partners. Norton founded the Libby Rouse Fund for Peace at Yale University, his alma mater, to encourage the study of Middle East cultures.
Jason Tanz is editor at large at WIRED, where he writes frequently for the web and print and helps set the brand’s editorial strategy. He has been at WIRED since 2007; previously he worked at Fortune Small Business, Fortune, and SmartMoney magazines. His work has also appeared in The New York Times, Esquire, and Spin, among many other publications, and he is the author of Other People’s Property: A Shadow History of Hip-Hop in White America. Tanz received a bachelor’s degree from Brown University.
Actor Edward Norton uses his own site Crowdrise, a crowdsourcing site for charitable causes, as an example to argue against Malcolm Gladwell's New Yorker assessment that social networks cannot foster substantive relationships. "We didn't want it to be a use and drop utility," says Norton of Crowdrise. "We wanted it to be a personal narrative platform where you anchor your activist life."