Last week I revealed some exciting news, the launch of Facebook Supporters – a project I am helping to pilot for Facebook. This project has got me thinking about how important it is that artists and creators everywhere are given the support and freedom they need to do what they do best. So much so, that I used this topic as my Toastmasters speech subject on Monday. My speech task was to ‘Persuade with Power‘. To persuade my listeners (none of whom were cake decorators) to adopt my viewpoint or ideas or take some action. Here is what I had to say:
Toastmasters speech – Who will you choose?
You may not be aware but today, Monday the 9th of April 2018, is an important day for artists and creators everywhere. Today is the day that a little seed, one that has been lovely nurtured, has started to sprout. The protective coating of the seed has split open and the young shoot is pushing its way out into the world. This shoot has the potential to grow into a mighty tree, with many branches, leaves and fruit that can eventually benefit us all in one way or another.
Looking back in History
Now I’d like you to think back, way back, to a time in history where kings, popes and the wealthy aristocrats of the day supported artists such as musicians, painters, and sculptors. Without this support or patronage, we wouldn’t have Shakespeare’s plays, Mozart music, Leonardo da Vinci’s art – no Romeo and Juliet, no Magic Flute no Mona Lisa! Our experiences in today’s world would be very different.
To quote the author, writer and speaker Monica Bryrne
For non-Latin buffs ‘quid pro quo’ means something for something, a favour for a favour. I give you something and you give me something back.
Something for something
I think you’ll agree this principle sounds fair, but is it happening right now? I say it isn’t, we live in a world where we all expect free software for our computer, free videos on YouTube and free or almost free books on Amazon and these are just a few examples… There is, however, a wind of change.
Two months ago a surprising email landed in my inbox from the Facebook developer team based over in California. I was amazed, they loved what I was doing on Facebook Live. I was even more amazed that they had found me, the probability must be infinitesimally small! Especially when you consider there are over 65 million business Facebook pages.
To cut a long story short, I have been chosen to help test drive a new product which is being called a Facebook Supporters programme for creators. Where I give my supporters valuable content in exchange for a small monthly sum, which I’m likening it to the price of a cup of coffee. The 21st century equivalent to the patrons of the past.
I’m not the only one, creators from many different backgrounds have been chosen, a magician, an actress, a florist, a video gamers creator etc. We’ve been told that we are a ‘small yet mighty group of creators’, which is good to know
Some of you might have read the book ‘big magic’ in the words of Elizabeth Gilbert:
Why am I telling you this?
Well, I’m thrilled that Facebook wants to support creators. I think it is an important mindset change. I can see this seed, with Facebook’s backing, grow, branch out and making a real difference to many peoples lives, including yours and mine. We may not all love Facebook and maybe it drives us mad at times. I expect, however, that most of you are on Facebook, it’s in our pocket, at our fingertips, it’s very accessible.
Did you know?
• 1 in 11 people in the world are on Facebook – that’s a humongous number.
• 1.40 billion people on average log onto Facebook daily.
• The average time spent per Facebook visit is 20 minutes.
My questions for you…
Facebook supporters is currently only a pilot. Going forward, however, I’d like you to think about who would you might like to support? Will it be, say a local woodcarver, who creates the most amazing pieces that make you stand and stare? A colourful painter, who brighten up your world? An author, who takes you to places you could never have imagined? A musician, who’s music touches your soul?
Will you click their ‘become a supporter’ button once this Facebook supporter programme is rolled out? Will you help make the magic happen…? Do you think it’s important?
Have I persuaded you?
I hope my speech has got you thinking. I know there are still many questions that need addressing. In the meantime, however, I’d like to ask you…Will you help give me the freedom to create more amazing things? Will you join my ‘inner circle’ and help make the magic happen?
‘Bringing world-class sugarcraft to your kitchen’