( ENSPIRE NEWS ) Sneakerheads Unite to Raise $70,000
It is uncomfortable to write about a great thing you helped to make happen. It is easy to come off the wrong way. Still, at the risk of public ridicule, I sat down to write this piece this morning because I wanted to share something I learned over the last couple of days: when properly motivated sneakerheads will come together and can accomplish amazing things. Sneakerheads Unite to Raise $70,000
There is a lot of talk about “influence” and “community” in sneaker media. In mainstream media, sneakers rarely come-up at all – except in the negative condentation of excessive spending, or when violence disrupts a release. About 72 hours ago, our owner Khan, my friend Brian (who owns Philadelphia’s Lapstone and Hammer) and I thought it might be cool to motivate and “influence” a sneakerhead “community” to come together and try and make news for doing something extremely positive instead. We thought, with this being the holiday season, it would be amazing to bless some readers with one of the coolest packs of Holiday Jordan releases in sometime. So, we set out to giveaway three sneakers: the Aqua 8, the Maroon 6 and the Air Jordan 11 72-10. All three sneakers to three different winners.
To extend the feeling of giving to participants, we made the rules extremely simple:
We put no cap on the number of times you could donate, nor did we require that the donation was any more than a dollar. We thought “this will be neat, we will get to giveaway some dope kicks and raise a few hundred bucks for charity.” Then, just over 24 hours later, we had raised over $10,000 and in amazement spent the next two days watching it continue to grow to a donation of over $20,000.
If we are a “community” and our outlets have an influence, we should be engaging our audiences to tackle real problems. Sure, we can all take to social platforms to bitch about missing the latest release too but that’s really not doing much for anyone. We certainly are not the first to link sneakers to charity or to engage sneakerheads similarly (this is also not the first of our efforts). We wouldn’t want to make that claim even if that were the case because, simply, that is not the point. The point is it can be done. No… the point is it should be done more often.
DURING THE 72 HOURS THAT OUR GIVEAWAY RAFFLE RAN WE RECEIVED ZERO SUPPORT FROM ANY OTHER MEDIA OUTLET OR SNEAKER BLOG, PERSONALITY, INFLUENCERS, ETC. NONE. NOT EVEN A RETWEET.
I’m writing about it right now because it seemed certain no one else was going to. Let me not be politically correct here for a moment: how fucked up is that?
I don’t want the attention, nor does the site. We were careful not to include our name in the contest, our logo on the graphics involved, there was no step to follow us or otherwise engage on or with the site. We very literally (and intentionally) did not want it to be about us. Before cynics start with the “it is a company tax write off” comments, the way the charity is set up donations are direct from the participants to the charity. We are never in the possession of the money to make the donation ourselves, thusly, the tax benefits are extended to those who donated. My point is: I’m writing about how amazing it was to raise $20K for charity and how no one helped us because who knows what we could have raised had media or other sneaker outlets supported the move and helped us to engage even more of the “community.”
It is difficult to write about something dope that you’ve been a part of. It can come off the wrong way. I don’t care. Why? Because 668 people (and climbing) now have clean water because of our readers who participated – and if you talk about this at all (even to roast me) you might just motivate more of the community to get involved.
Congratulations to our winners! We thank you for giving and hope that you enjoy your new Jordans. If you would like to donate to the cause even though the giveaway has ended, you are awesome and you can do so, here.
Thank you to Brain at Lapstone and Hammer for helping to make this possible, to Khan for always making sure that as a company we are putting community first and to our awesome readers who participated so generously. I would love to have to write a much longer “thank you” list next time.