Google recently released an enhancement for their Docs feature called “Discussions” in addition to the announcement of a new not-for-profit program. Discussions is an enterprise collaboration extending the comments feature within Google Docs. This enhancement combines the following important features:
- Structured discussions
- Time stamping
- Profile pictures
- @ mentions
- Unified stream discussion
- Email alerts
If the discussion stream becomes too large, comments can be archived as opposed to deleted. This ensures no information that may need to be accessed at a later date is lost or missed due to deletion. At this moment, the Discussions feature is only applicable to newly created documents and will not be applied to existing files. Discussions is currently available to all users with personal Google accounts and Google Apps customers.
Bundled with the release of Discussions is the announcement of Google’s new nonprofit program which is based out of the United States. The primary objective of the program is to assist U.S.-based nonprofits with reaching more donors, raising awareness for a specific cause as well as improving management operations of the organization. Basically this nonprofit program is helping improve other nonprofit programs.
According to Alfred Spector, Vice President of Research and Special Initiatives, Google has learned that many nonprofit organizations in the United States need hands on assistance with the optimization of Google’s many tools. Therefore, the Internet tycoon is attempting to provide that assistance.
There is another helpful feature working in conjunction with the program: Google Nonprofits Marketplace. This connects various organizations with certified providers that are offering their assistance for free or at a discount. In 2011, Google is looking to help nonprofits make a positive change to the local and global community and is excited about being available for support. Those that work for a nonprofit can apply to see if Google can help.
In 2011 Google is attempting to make serious changes to the way in which they do business and others help the world. By continuing to add features and upgrade the many software programs Google implements, the entire world will continue to become closer and more connected.
Since Google is such an industry giant, it is commendable for them to take corporate social responsibility and apply that to those that help others in crisis. It is unfortunate more large corporations do not have Google’s heart to give back to the community that supports them.