Years in St. Pete
Tampa Bay for many years. 15 years in Pinellas County.
Co-Founder of Bridges.
What do you do?
Creator, co-founder, thought originator of Bridges. Alternative social media platform that is designed around connecting people by their differences in fundamental things like religion, politics, race, gender, gender identity, sexuality.
Why do you do it?
So that they can connect in one-on-one conversations to discuss those differences in a civil dialogue, rather than the discussions you see on our social media platforms of today that all too often lead to fights, aggression, and insults.
What was your Catalyst? (How did you get started?)
It came as an idea in the lead up to the last presidential election, thinking that there were going to be a lot of disaffected voters on one side. There was a lot of conversation that wasn't happening in a productive way. The election went the other way, but that just meant the disaffected voters were on the other side. But we really want to do more than just politics because there are so many divides in our country that are exascerbated through a lot of social media channels and media we consume that we think can be healed to a great degree just by having a conversation with someone.
What’s a common misconception or unknown aspect of what you do?
People ask how we're going to moderate the platform, keep the conversation civil. We're going to rely mainly on community ratings for that. So when you have a conversation with someone, you're going to rate them, and that's going to aggregate into their community rating.
What’s the most challenging part of your Hustle?
The biggest challenge we'll face is just scaling it up. It's going to be a new social media platform. We know we're not going to replace Facebook, but we want to be an alternative platform to get out of the fray and get one on one with someone to have a real meaningful conversation. As far as scaling up, our initial plan will obviously be marketing, but also working with colleges and professors.
What’s the most valuable piece of business advice/insight that’s helped you?
Just launched an Indie Go-go to build the actual platform. You can donate through the indie go-go at igg.me/at/bridgescommunity.