endMS and stopSP launched

Quite a few months back, I wrote a post announcing the launch of a temporary site for the MS Society of Canada to support the endMS campaign and the society’s hope to raise enough money ($60mm) to find the cure for this disease.

Yesterday, I posted this on the iStudio Ideas and Insight blog.

If you’re in Canada, you will have hopefully been touched (in both senses of the word) by the Public Service Announcement in almost all media that direct you to the site.

Today, I’m very excited to say that the full version of endMS has launched. And it looks fantastic!

Along with the other functionality, bells and whistles I ran through in my original post (Flash intro, interactive funding simulator, email registration and secure online donation form), there are two very cool new additions.

First off, there is a community scrapbook. Because it’s not just the people with MS who are affected, it’s their whole family and network we wanted to allow everyone to tell their story. We could never hope to create the sort of content that truly tells the story, so we decided to have the community tell us, and tell each other how MS affects them and why it’s so important that we do, finally, endMS.

We’ve given the community the ability to tell their stories by uploading video, pictures or just plain text to the site – and we hope they do.

Secondly, we recognise that the site can only do so much – most of the conversation around the campaign will happen off-site and we want to embrace that. So, by tagging your content with “endMS” or “stopSP” on Technorati, on Flickr, on YouTube, on Daily Motion, on Photobucket, your content will be pulled in and displayed on the site. We believe that this will show momentum and provide some context to the wider conversation.

With something as important as the endMS campaign, we also wanted to show the reader just how important their donation is by getting the researchers that they are funding to blog about their work. But that wasn’t enough for the MS Society – the Society wanted to have everyone involved with endMS to talk about why they were passionate about ending MS forever.

And because this is Canada, for an added twist, everything had to be bilingual. Which it is, in the form of stopSP!

As of today, it is frankly awesome to see that the campaign has raised $32mm so far. Please take some time to check out the site, sign up for the newsletter and, if you want to, make a donation.

It’s easy to do great, rewarding work when you have a great client that does incredibly rewarding work – and the MS Society team is just that sort of client. Thanks to them for choosing iStudio for such an important project.

I’m pretty sure that everyone in the iStudio team had a hand in this project but I’d like to give special shout outs to Steve Coppola, Mike Badgley, Dave Knight and Keith Chadwick for all of the hard work that they in particular put into the project. I know I owe them a drink or two the next time I’m in Ottawa.

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