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Twitter Roundup – June 11: Cigarette vending machines sell books, MasterCard targets developing world and Waterworld star saves Gulf?

   /   Jun 11th, 2010Environment, News, Tech

Search for the hashtag #socent and you’ll find wide-ranging interest in social entrepreneurship on Twitter. Here’s a roundup of tweets from the past week:

In the wake of an environmental disaster, thinkers, activists, artists and business people convene to make sense of things at a TEDx conference. Sound familiar? It’s reminiscent of TEDxVolcano, April’s impromptu gathering of those stranded in London by the Eyjafjallajokull eruption. Details are yet to be released from the TEDxMidAtlantic team organizing the event.  If you plan to be in D.C. on June 28, they’re accepting applications for speakers and attendees, check it out!

If this quote reminded you of Field of Dreams, you’re right on track. According to Mother Jones (@MotherJones), actor Kevin Costner has spent 15 years investing his money and time to create an ocean cleanup device through his company, Ocean Therapy Solutions. BP is already using ten of Costner’s machines in the Gulf, and they’ve ordered 22 more. It’s not yet clear how effective these devices will be. Testifying at a House subcommittee meeting this past Wednesday, Costner appeared confident. But he was also confident when he made Waterworld. Let’s hope this production fares better.

MasterCard (@MasterCardNews) has struck a partnership with Smart Hub, Inc., the  global mobile phone network. According to a press release issued Wednesday, the company is aiming to bring payment services to a billion mobile phone users in developing countries, like Brazil, which will host the pilot launch. Companies such as Vodaphone have offered mobile banking for several years now. MasterCard’s move is a sign that these services will soon redefine the way money moves around the globe.

Aida Mollenkamp (@aidamollenkamp), television host and chef, alerted us to an idea which is making waves in Germany this week. A company called “Automatenverlag” (in English, it means something like “the automatic press machine”) has been turning unused cigarette vending machines throughout Hamburg into book vending machines. The books come from local writers and cost just 4 euros (US $5). If you read German, their website is here, complete with a neat video; if not, GOOD Magazine has a little more information on their blog. We hope this idea finds its way stateside soon.

What’d we miss?

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