CSS support in emails

When I was implementing the WWF-Australia E-news template I spent days working out the quirks of all the various email clients we wanted to support – especially Gmail and Hotmail.

Once the design was finished I had every intention of documenting the results and publishing them here. Needless to say I never made the time and gradually the knowledge faded. We’re just about to create a new email product that requires a new template, and I was really annoyed that I didn’t just make it happen at the time.

Well, Campaign Monitor have done us all a massive favour by publishing A Guide to CSS Support in Email. It’s an awesome resource that goes well beyond my findings. This should make life a lot easier as we develop the new product.

So, to Campaign Monitor from me: Thanks!

P.S. If you want to sign up for the WWF-Australia newsletter, you can do so here.

The future is man made

Since I started working at WWF-Australia I’ve become more and more aware of the tremendous environmental issues that we face. Although I knew we had some problems, it seems that every day news comes out that it’s worse than we thought.

My view, echoed in Tim Flannery’s book The Weather Makers and informed by what I’ve heard around the office, is that we have about 10 years to make massive reductions in CO2 if we are to avoid massively disruptive climate change within the next 100 years.

The train is already in motion – as I understand it, changes to our emissions today will not stop the effects of climate change for the next 50 years. That is, even if we reduced our emissions to almost zero tomorrow, the impacts of climate change would continue unabated for the next 50 years, at which time our emissions reductions would start to take effect. (As an aside “the train” is illustrated quite literally by the recently launched television commercials produced by Environmental Defense)

It’s an important issue that needs serious and rapid action at all levels – international, national, local and personal.

Today the team at WWF-Australia launched a large campaign that hopefully you’ll be hearing a lot more about over the next few months.

The campaign is called “The future is man made“. The name alludes to the idea that we, collectively, can choose our path for the future.

On the one hand we can choose to continue “business as usual”, which will have devastating consequences on the environment, on our health, and the global economy as irreversible climate change takes hold.

On the other hand, we can choose to rapidly change our ways, to reduce our CO2 emissions (the key driver of climate change), to live sustainably. If we move quickly – that is a drastic reduction in CO2 over the next seven to ten years – the science suggests we can avoid the worst impacts of climate change.

We are hoping to tap into the growing concern over climate change, and to make people aware that we have a choice – that we have many solutions available to us right now that we can use to reduce our environmental footprint.

In keeping with the theme of the campaign (and following on from the success of The Weather Makers book that WWF-Australia played a part in promoting), we are encouraging people to become “Futuremakers” – to be deliberate in creating the future that we want – one that is sustainable, one that leaves something for the next generation. We’ve written a piece about what it means to be a Futuremaker on the WWF-Australia website.

The main aim of the campaign site (Flash required) is to encourage people to sign up to receive regular email updates from us – to keep informed about what’s happening, and to learn about the little things that collectively can have a big impact.

Around the office we’ve been referring to that idea as “amplification” – i.e. if loads of people do a couple of small things the effect is amplified, resulting in a big impact. (The folks over at Worldchanging have highlighted two actions [1, 2] that demonstrate this to amazing effect.)

Anyways – I hope y’all can check out the site, and if you’re up for it sign up to become a Futuremaker. As with all campaigns like this, we really want to get the word out to as many people as possible. If you can let your friends, relatives, anyone who’ll listen really, know about the site and, just as importantly, the issues that it highlights, that would be tops.

I should also mention that the site was developed by Leo Burnett for WWF as an interactive interpretation of the print advertising campaign. The team there have put a lot of hard yards into the campaign and I think you’ll agree it looks pretty impressive.

Any thoughts, comments or feedback welcome.

P.S. The current issue of Time magazine, released today here in Australia, is focused on climate change. It’s quite an extraordinary piece of work by the folks at Time. We also managed to squeeze the first Future is man made print advertisements into that issue – rather fitting we think.

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Global warming television commercials

U.S-based Environmental Defense has launched some television commercials (TVCs) on the issue of global warming.

Both are pretty powerful – using the idea of legacy to children in a very sharp way. The second TVC gave me goosebumps…

There’s a tell-a-friend option there – if you are impacted by the message of the ads, please pass it on. It’s also interesting that there’s a “facts behind the ads” link underneath – very clever use of the net to ward off any attacks on that basis.

Our Great Economy

Suburban Scrawl: Our Great Economy:

The Howard Government likes to give the impression that they are fantastic managers of the economy. Yet, since they got in power back in 1996, foreign debt is up 144.6%, credit card debt is up 188.8% and household debt is up 281.2%.

Stuart posts the figures that support the percentages mentioned here. Every bloody time I see Costello get up there and talk about the stable economy, the voice inside my head always responds with “yeh, on the back of record debt”. Now I have the stats to back it up…