We are building a social network for climate action
Power to the people. And lots of it too. That’s the goal of the international climate initiative #WeDontHaveTime.
The method: Building the world’s biggest social media network. “We’re aiming for at least one hundred million users”, says founder and CEO Ingmar Rentzhog.
Ingmar Rentzhog is a multi-award winning Swedish entrepreneur who changed course after starting to read about the climate crisis.
In 2017 he founded WeDon’tHaveTime, which has already organised the world’s first fossil-free international climate conference and co-hosted the Climate Emergency Plan seminar, which took place in Stockholm on 24 November.
The main focus of WeDontHaveTime.org, however, is to create the world’s biggest social media network to put pressure on world leaders and encourage them to do the right thing.
“What we are trying to achieve is giving power to the people. If people get together and cooperate I am sure that we can solve the climate crisis, and the perfect way to get together is with modern technology”, says Ingmar Rentzhog.
The goal, one hundred million users, is founded on basic mathematics. Surveys show that 54 percent of the world’s population are worried about the climate. One-third of the same population have a social media account.
“If you take away countries without access to free internet, we are talking roughly 800 million social media users. We aim to mobilise one-eighth of those. And once we reach a hundred million, the number is just going to continue to rise”, says Ingmar Rentzhog.
The trademarks of the app are the climate hearts and the climate bombs. If a political party, a company, an organisation or an individual is doing something good for the climate, app users can send them climate hearts to encourage them to continue on the same path. If, on the other hand, they are doing things that increase emissions, users can send them climate bombs.
After a certain number of bombs or hearts, the campaign reaches a new level, and a reward is handed out by WeDon’tHaveTime.
“At level two, it could be that an email is sent to the company, telling them that ten thousand people have sent them climate bombs and asking them to respond. At level four, it could be that a film is being made and spread on social media. At level one hundred, perhaps we’d arrange a seminar about this specific problem”, says Ingmar Rentzhog. “But we also want to encourage those who do good. For example, if a fast food chain starts selling vegan burgers, we want to spread the word about it, so that others are encouraged to do the same.”
He describes the app as a mix of TripAdvisor, Instagram and Twitter. In addition to the love and climate bombing, users can post and share content, initiate campaigns, follow others and take part in discussions. No login is required for those who just want to like or share.
“The app is a platform in itself. It is our channel to other social media. We want to build something that can utilise other social media platforms in a good way. You don’t often see that happening today. People seldom share a tweet on Facebook or vice versa.”
The early beta version of the app is currently under internal testing. The official launch of the app will be on Earth Day, 22 April, in 2019, but for invitees only. If you want to be one of those, you can sign up for the launch on the WeDontHaveTime website. 6000 other people have already done so.
“The reason we’re starting off with invitees only is that we don’t want to grow too fast”, explains Ingmar Rentzhog. “We are developing this together with our users, and we want to be able to handle all the feedback we will receive from them. It might turn out that they use the app in ways that we haven’t anticipated, and if that happens we need to be able to keep up with them and modify it to satisfy their needs.”
Ingmar Rentzhog is enthusiastic about the launch.
“We already feel that we have great support from many people around the globe. Many of those who contact us want to contribute in various ways. There is great demand for a tool that allows them to do so.”
Written by Markus Lutteman
Proofreading by Jane Davis
Facts about We Don't Have Time
We Don’t Have Time is a movement and a tech start-up that leverages the power of social media to hold leaders and companies accountable for climate change.
WeDontHaveTime AB (publ.) is a “Good Cause Company”, in which the brand and voting shares will be controlled by a foundation. The purpose of the foundation is to promote knowledge about climate change and its consequences, to reward good initiatives from leaders, companies and organisations, and to manage the WeDontHaveTime brand in accordance with this purpose. 10% of all future profit from WeDontHaveTime AB (publ.) will be shared with the We Don’t Have Time Foundation, based on a licensing agreement for the WeDontHaveTime trademark.
We Don’t Have Time are currently building the world’s largest social network for climate action. Together we can solve the climate crisis.
But we are running out of time.