Jack Dorsey Saves Our CitiesDamien Moye
Detroit, once an American jewel of cars and music, has declared bankruptcy and is now a shell of it’s former self. In Nov. 2011, so did Jefferson County/Birmingham, Alabama. According to some articles and experts, Chicago, San Diego, and Silicon Valley’s own San Jose, CA are on the chopping block. One tech pioneer is trying to do something about it.
Here comes Jack Dorsey, co-founder of Twitter and CEO of Square, a service that helps merchants take debit and credit card payments over smartphones. Starting Aug 29, he’ll be hosting a forum with merchants and small business owners in St. Louim s. St. Louis is Dorsey’s home town and a city that’s struggling on many sides. In the near future, Dorsey plans to host forums in Bronx NY, New Orleans, and Detroit, among other cities. Focusing on cities that are facing hard times, he wants to build dialogue and community. He’s focusing on the small business for two reasons. One, people actually want to buy locally and keep their dollars in their communities. Two, he recognizes small businesses are the social backbone of a town, even major cities. Merchants can even use these forums to share their works, sort of like a show and tell for small business owners. Dorsey admit this may not solve all problems, but at least dialogue and plans and a re-building progress can be started.
And I have to agree with him. Think about it: for the longest time, meeting places have always been the local tavern, pizza parlor, salon/barber shop, pool hall, bowling alley, skating ring, coffee shop, etc. Sure, with today’s social media, we can keep virtual contact with anyone anywhere, and that’s a great way to build community. But there comes a time when we all want human contact, and these small businesses allow us that. Plus, I’ve notice a movement going on. I think people are tired of globalization being shoved down their throats. And since so many jobs have been shipped overseas, there’s a hunger for local businesses and an insistence on keeping dollars in the community. Thus, jobs are created, because people need to run and manage these businesses and services. So I say hats off to Jack Dorsey. If these forums come to your town, would you attend?