What would you tell a green building insider interested in social media and web 2.0? 

I recently had to answer this question, and I thought my answer might be helpful to some Green Building Law Update readers.  I decided to keep it simple.  For me, social media starts with two platforms:  blogs and Twitter. 

A number of tremendous green building blogs are now available and the best way to keep track of them is through an RSS reader.  I prefer Google Reader.  What is RSS?  I like to describe it as an online mailbox where your subscriptions to websites and blogs are delivered.  The video below also does a good job explaining RSS:


What green building blogs would I recommend?  I recommend you start with one blog that aggregates many of the best green building blogs:  Sustainable Cities Collective.  By subscribing to the Sustainable Cities Collective RSS feed, you are subscribing to a handful of green building blogs. 

The next web 2.0 platform I use is Twitter.  The first step to using Twitter is to create a user name — I highly recommend using your own name (@chrischeatham).  After setting up your Twitter account, you need to start following people and join the conversation.  There are hundreds of green building experts on Twitter, but I am going to mention two to get you started.

  • @kilrwat – This is Rob Watson, the Father of LEED.  He is also the editor at GreenerBuildings.com and is not afraid to share his opinions about green building and the environment.
  • @elaineishere – Elaine Hsieh is on a bunch of LEED committees and is always in the know about the future of green building.  She regularly provides new information and helpful green building links. 

The key to Twitter is to mix it up.  Use the "@" symbol followed by someone’s name to start a conversation.  Or re-tweet a link of interest.  If you think there is a problem with the LEED rating system, tell Rob.  I bet he responds.  If you have a question about the best solar strategy in California, ask Elaine.  Do something more than reading through tweets.  I have found that much of the conversation regarding Green Building Law Update occurs in Twitter and not in the comments section of my blog.  Let me know what you think (@chrischeatham). 

Once you are comfortable with Twitter, you can upgrade to power Twitter by using Hootsuite.  Hootsuite allows you to search for key terms, manage all of your online profiles and so much more in one central location.  Thanks to Matt Handal for suggesting Hootsuite. 

That is the green building version of social media. 

What did I miss?