Why This Web Site?
Why Coyote Communications?
The original spirit of the Internet was to freely give information, as well as to take it. It was a system built with the primary intention of collaboration, communication and accessibility -- not exclusivity and profits.
With that original spirit in mind, and to promote my expertise and services, I began creating and posting free tip sheets to various newsgroups in 1994 and posting them to the soc.org.nonprofit USENET newsgroup (see A Brief Review of the Early History of Nonprofits and the Internet for more about the early days of nonprofits and the Internet). Two years later, I created my own web site, in January 1996 under the name "Coyote Communications", to post my materials and favorite links to help mission-based organizations (nonprofits, NGOs, public sector organizations, civil society organizations, etc.) reap program-enhancing, money-saving benefits from technology.
For its first eight years, the focus of the Coyote Communications web site was exclusively on computer and Internet technology tips for mission-based (nonprofit, non-governmental, civil society and public agencies) organizations. My expanded the web site now includes resources on communications, volunteerism and volunteer management, and community and human development abroad.
My web materials are not limited to my own thoughts and experiences -- many other people are quoted in these pages, and I link to other Web sites to provide even more resources.
In January 2016, I celebrated the 20th anniversary of this web site.
I cannot give away all of my time, expertise and materials for free. I've got bills to pay and mouths to feed and loved ones to shelter, just like everyone, and the maintenance and hosting of this web site, simple as it is, has real costs - costs I have to pay for. The materials on this web site is what I give away for free, and I hope it provides quality information to help nonprofit organizations and NGOs, especially tiny ones, to explore, to innovate, to expand and to improve. I also hope it promotes my expertise such that I can get hired and be able to pay my bills - including those for this web site!
Why "Coyote" Communications? Because I am quite partial to canines, and I think the coyote is unique among them, with qualities I greatly admire. Coyotes are amazingly adaptable to ever-changing surroundings - efforts to control or exterminate the coyote and the massive garbage-production of modern humans have produced an animal that is even more alert, opportunistic, and able to survive, even flourish. They are uniquely American creatures, incredibly misunderstood animals, much smaller than most people think, and often blamed for destruction not of their making. Coyotes are surprisingly, sometimes shockingly, intelligent, have the reputation of being "tricksters," work well in groups, love to play, and have boundless love for their families. At night, to hear the high quavering cry or the short, high-pitched yips of coyotes is the most beautiful song you can hear. My only regret in choosing the name is that it is very hard for non-native English speakers to say, let alone spell, and most people abroad don't know the word.
Some mission-based organizations may find the tech-related information on my site too basic; good for you, then, if you have become so advanced. I remember back in the 1990s when I would ask a room full of nonprofit representatives had email addresses, and not even one third of the room would raise their hands (advanced organizations should definitely check out TechSoup, which specializes in providing tech-related resources for mission-based organizations). But organizations in the developing world, as well as non-tech staff at mission-based organizations in even the USA, still need basic information, and I'm happy to do what I can to provide such (and be sure to check out my Stages of Maturity in Nonprofit Organizations Using Online Services).
These pages are formatted so that you can print them out and reference them offline. They are also formatted so that they can be viewed on "low end" machines and software -- many people and organizations are not using the latest and greatest software, and I don't want to turn away anyone (let alone potential customers)! I'm still working on making some, if not all, of the pages mobile-ready (as I'm not a web designer, that's difficult).
Special thanks to the participants of various Internet discussion groups that talk about not-for-profit and public sector agency issues. It's the collective wisdom shared in such groups that makes the Internet such a great place to be.
Subscribe to Tech4Impact, Coyote Communication's free monthly e-mail newsletter to help mission-based organizations learn how to get the most out of computer and Internet technology.
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