Geeks Without Borders

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Willow Brugh, of Seattle’s Jigsaw Renaissance, sent us word of this new org, Geeks Without Borders. In the above video from Gnomedex, Johnny Diggz explains the origins of the idea. Right now, they’re looking for folks to spread the word to other geeks who might be interested in being involved and they’re traveling to hackerspaces to try and drum up support.

Geeks Without Borders (GWOB.org) is an international humanitarian organization of geeks and their technology-friendly friends, working together to assist people whose survival is threatened by lack of access to technology and communications due to violence, neglect, or catastrophe.

We want to have the bases of operation for GWOB be hacker and maker spaces across the world.

BTW: The official launch date for the organization is 10.10.10 at 10:10am PST (1:10pm EST)

Geeks Without Borders

Update: We got an email from Paul Luther, who’s the director of another org called Geeks Without Borders, that’s been around since 2002. Shame that there has to be a conflict/controversy over the naming of an altruistic group. Hope this can be amicably worked out:

One of our board members is an avid follower of makezine.com and just noticed your article titled “Geeks Without Borders,” which we are concerned about
as it represents our long-established non-profit organization as a new endeavor by someone unaffiliated with us.

It would be nice if you post a correction to the article pointing out that Geeks Without Borders is not new, or related to Mr. Johnny Diggz, who is not affiliated with the official 501(c)3 organization Geeks Without Borders.

Although his mission sounds good, and we wish him the best of luck, using our name misrepresents his organization as ours, and that’s not helpful to either organization.

Pat Luther
Director, Geeks Without Borders

Update to the Update: The parties involved are going to talk to each other, I understand. Hope it all works out.

8 thoughts on “Geeks Without Borders

  1. Chantel says:

    I was rather surprised to learn about this. Geeks Without Borders has been a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit since October 2002. Why would someone just take another nonprofit’s name like this no matter how cool it is?

  2. Pat Luther says:

    One of our board members is an avid follower of makezine.com and just noticed this article. We are concerned about it since it represents our long-established non-profit organization as a new endeavor by someone unaffiliated with us.

    I want to point out that Geeks Without Borders is not new, or related to Mr. Johnny Diggz, who is not affiliated with the official 501(c)3 organization Geeks Without Borders.

    Although his mission sounds good, and we wish him the best of luck, using our name misrepresents his organization as ours, and it’s not.

    1. Matt says:

      The “avid follower” would be me. Hope this can be remedied amicably. I’m sure everyone is trying to be altruistic, but perhaps a little more due diligence before choosing a name would be good.

      1. afiler.com says:

        They’re commented on this on their twitter feed, saying “we’ve reached out to them. They appeared inactive since 2003 and let their domain expire. Not exactly the warmest folks.”

        http://twitter.com/GWOBorg/status/22837915367

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Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. And he has a new best-of writing collection and “lazy man’s memoir,” called Borg Like Me.

View more articles by Gareth Branwyn
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