I came across this in my Twitter feed earlier today:

It’s inspiring and thought-provoking. And with the apparent rapid spread of this video (over 20,000 views so far in the 2 days since it’s been posted), I expect it probably won’t be too long until he’s got some work. To be honest, with the way these things go I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets interviews on news channels and prime-time chat shows.

But what if he doesn’t? How could the huge reach of Twitter help him out?

I don’t know his personal cirumstances, and leaving aside his probable need for a roof over his head, but in order to start a career as a professional voice-over man he technically only needs a laptop ($400/£250) some free audio software, and a half-decent microphone ($100/£65). With a small amount of training in how to use the software it really wouldn’t take a lot for him to start creating his own recordings, online portfolio, and eventually provide high-quality work for clients from the warmth and comfort of his own home.

So, for around $500/£320 we (the social media users of the world) could change this guy’s life at a point where he really looks like he’s willing to make it happen. Here’s a guy who is honest about the difficulties he’s had in his life, and is looking to start afresh. I for one would happily give him a tenner.

But how would this happen?

Sites like Justgiving have made it brilliantly easy to donate to charity, but giving to individuals isn’t quite so simple, especially if they’re not someone you can hand the money to personally.

  • He could set up his own site and ask for Paypal donations?
  • We could set up a Twitter/Facebook fund that we all contribute a few quid to, and then vote each week on who gets a “grant” or award from it?
  • With the relatively tiny amounts probably needed, maybe micro-donation services like Flattr could be the answer? It would take only minutes to raise the $500 needed if this video continues to spread the way it has done.
  • Any other ideas?

As social media makes it easier for brilliant stories like this to come to our attention wouldn’t it be amazing for it to be easy to donate to them, too?

If we can find a way to help him out, and he gets the facilities to do so, I’ll personally guarantee that we use him, and pay him, for a job doing a voiceover on our next Dizzyjam promo video.

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Hat-tip to Brian Travers (from UB40) whose original tweet about this reached me via an Urbanfly retweet.

UPDATE – Since I first saw the video it’s picked up over 100,000 more views, is getting about 30 comments A MINUTE, and I’ve just received news that he’s been offered some radio appearances. Excellent!

UPDATE 2 – In the 18 hours or so since I first saw this, the video has received a further MILLION views, homeless voiceover guy is landing lots of job offers it seems, and the guy who uploaded the video is going to give him a phone so that he can respond to all the offers. When used for things like this, the internet is a true force for good. But how could we formalise this process?

UPDATE 3 – Over 4.5 million views in the last 24 hours, many job offers, and a news piece on CNN:

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