Guest Post: A Social Media Geek’s Love of Cars is Exposed

August 17, 2009

A few things most people in the Boston social media scene know about me:

But here’s something most of my social geeks don’t know: I’m a huge car nut. It’s probably because I haven’t owned a car in over two years, so most of my transportation talk consists of my opinions about the MBTA, but I’ve had a long fascination with the car. Before most of us were on the internet, I read car magazines: I have every issue of Road & Track from 1989 to 1996.

My first foray into online communities, way back in the Web 1.0 world, was on auto-enthusiast forums. For my design blog, I had a chance to sit in the Chevy Malibu hybrid before it was released, and got to do hot laps in the Saab Turbo X. It’s a very fun job at times.


So you imagine my disdain when I found out that Jeff, along with Christine Koh, was helping Ford organize the Summer of Taurus, a Tweetup celebrating the release of the 2o1o Taurus. After all, Jeff’s a scooter guy.

After I got over my self-righteous pity party, I thought about how cool this is? A little over a year ago, Ford stole away one of Boston’s biggest social media minds to lead up their online media efforts, and now, they’re giving us a chance to drive a new car before it hits dealer lots.

When we meet at the Asgard, we’ll not only have chances to drive the cars, but we’ll be able to use whatever tech we know how and want to use: photos, audio, video, or any combination thereof. And we’ll get a chance to meet and talk to David Lietch, Ford Motor Company‚Äôs General Counsel and Group Vice President. We’ll all be shooting, interviewing, recording, and making content to document our time in the new Taurus.

It’s a great way for Ford to kickstart a viral marketing campaign, and a brilliant way for a social media car geek like me to get a fix.

(Photo credit: Justin Wright)

Gradon Tripp is the founder of Social Media for Social Change, an organization that uses the tools of online media to raise awareness for nonprofits. He is also the founder and chief blogger of DesignBoston. He writes about ways organizations — both non-profit and for-profit — can benefit from using social media at