While on a biz trip to Toronto, I sat down for “5 Questions” with Karim Kanji of Techvibes at the EPIC restaurant (Epic is the name, not my description) at the Royal York Hotel. I manage to dispense some advice, offer props to iPadio (podcasting web app of Olympic Outsider), Sarah Prevette of Sprouter, and T.O. ex-pat Dave Delaney (dayjob= Griffin).
A busy year in the pond
Since launching happyfrog.ca just over a year ago, the small band of eco-minded renegades worked hard to help sustainability-focused businesses and organizations gain valuable exposure on the web, and in close conjunction with this effort, help green-minded consumers find these great biz’es and orgs.
Over this year, my colleagues and I attended all sorts of trade shows, conferences, meet-ups, presentations and camps to spread the message of sharing eco-smarts with your community. Indeed, we found great joy in seeing the positive impact we’ve made on green entrepreneurs and shoppers alike.
Evolution to a swimming mammal
Now, change is upon us. happyfrog has made friends with a pod of whales and announces happyfrog.ca has merged with 3rd Whale. This business merger means happyfrog.ca as we all know it will change significantly. Think of it as an evolution from a small amphibian to a giant mammal (and Darwin celebrates!).
The company will go forward as 3rd Whale with the aim of combining the happyfrog directory and social networking platform with 3rd Whale’s
mobile application (to be released for iPhone on in November, followed by Android and Blackberry versions) to markets down the West coast of North America, and to the world (and beyond! ;-).
For happyfrog to grow as fast as it did was not easy but … we’ve had a constellation of collaborators helping build the vision.
- Social Signal – strategic planning and information design
- Affinity Bridge – Drupal development and maintainence
- Brave New Code – search widget creation
- Bryght – Drupal-optimized hosting
- Zhonka – email delivery through Drupal
- Big Mike Design – flash animation
- Cyan Design – graphic design
- Info distillery – information gathering
- Rebecca Bollwitt
- John Bollwitt
- Raul Hummingbird604
- Alexa Booth
- Joe Solomon
- Greg Andrews
- Colleen Coplick
- Lisa Tilson
- Karen Fung
- Tris Hussey
- Olga Orda
- Rex Weyler
- Roland Tanglao
- Brad Rees
- Jonathan Narvey
- and all the other frogs who blogged, podcasted, vid-casted and otherwise helped.
Thanks also go to all the business owners who came to our focus groups, purchased ads, claimed their listings, spoke on a podcast, and said “thanks for helping us succeed”!
Same for the groups who invited us to speak at events and share this small revolution including Globe’s EPIC SustainableLiving Expo who which whom we put on an epic (heh) social media experimentat Canada Place (creating tons of creative commons’ content to support growing businesses), Shared Vision magazine for having our back in print, and Deirdre Rowland for getting us in the news and on the tube.
And most especially … thanks to *you* for showing up, reading our thoughts, sharing your knowledge, posting reviews, giving us a link, using the widget, and making our collective environment a little greener, and a little more fun. It would be lonely around here if you weren’t here. Truly, Thank You.
More about 3rd Whale and happyfrog
happyfrog founder (and independent media veteran), Ron Williams points out, “We couldn’t hope for a better partner than 3rd Whale – besides being values aligned, the “whales” bring technical and business skills to the table which help reach a larger audience and make change on a truly global scale.”
So, what does this mean for you?
You’ll see the site as you know it undergo a renovation and re-branding, you’ll see tens-of-thousands of new listings in new cities added (great for travelers too!), and you’ll see more tools coming out to help you share your eco-smarts with “pod mob” campaigns, mentoring programs, and reviews on-the-go with your smart phone.
Stay tuned for news about how your directory listings will change, blog posts will migrate and any changes to your account info – 3rd Whale will continue to respect both your privacy, and the time investment, you’ve put into happyfrog.ca.
I am truly grateful for your involvement in happyfrog.ca.
Dave Olson, Community Manager (emeritus)