Community Highlight: Litterati
We're super inspired with the work that Litterati team + community has been doing. They are a global community that is eradicating litter one piece at a time. Anyone around the world can download the app, photograph and dispose of litter, and upload / tag in the app. Everything is added to the Digital Landfill, a photo gallery of all the different pieces of litter that are picked up. People are coming together all around the world to add to the Digital Landfill, and we can't help but be inspired by this beautiful world art project.
We spoke with Jeff Kirscher, founder of Litterati, about his inspiration behind the app and what's next.
1. What was the inspiration behind your community and how did it all start?
It was something my 4 year old daughter said. We were hiking through the woods when she noticed a plastic tub of cat litter lying in a creek. "Daddeeee, that doesn't go there,” she cried. I live in the Bay Area, a place known for being environmentally responsible, and yet everywhere you look, there's litter. Sure I’d seen it before, but that moment witnessed through a child’s eyes, opened mine.
Then I remembered a lesson I learned as a kid at summer camp. Just before our parents visited, our camp director would instruct each of us to pick up five pieces of trash. 200 kids x 5 pieces per kid = a cleaner camp. So why not apply that same crowd-sourced model to the entire planet? And leverage technology to do it. That’s when Litterati was born.
2. How do you inspire others to take part?
One piece at a time.
3. How would you describe your community culture? How does someone join?
Confident and collaborative. Each individual knows they're making a difference while together we can see our combined impact.
4. What is your community buzzing about?
Video: 12 year old Nadia Sparkes. The world needs more people with this level of courage and compassion.
Podcast: How I Built This With Guy Raz - From Joe Gebbia (AirBnB) to Yvon Chouinard (Patagonia) to Kate Spade, hearing how people turned their dreams into reality is such an inspiration.
Article: McDonald's Makes A Stunning Announcement That Will Completely Change the Future of Fast Food. We shared this with the Litterati community and it was fascinating to see the variety of comments. Some are excited and supportive, others think it's been a long time coming.
6. Who should we know about or follow?
Marcus Eriksen: Co-Founder and Director of Science at The 5 Gyres Institute. He's the epitome of someone who walks the walk. Not only is Marcus one of the world’s most respected marine scientists, he also leads sailing expeditions all over the world to research plastic pollution in our oceans. Not to mention his 2000-mile, 5-month journey down the Mississippi River on a homemade raft. Oh and in his spare time, he's a paleontologist.
Mark Tercek: CEO of the Nature Conservancy - perhaps the most influential environmental organization in the world.
Dr. Wallace J Nichols: Author, speaker, and filmmaker behind the #BlueMind, a movement focused on the true value of waters and our oceans for good.
7. What are some exciting things that folks can look forward to from your group this year?
We're focused on creating a great product. We just received backing from the National Science Foundation, which will allow us to start building the technology to create experience that people love.
You can read more about it here.