November 23, 2010
Thankfulfor, an online gratitude journal community, has released a report ranking what people are most thankful for just in time for Thanksgiving. From a sampling of twenty-five thousand posts, analysts (from the data-mining resources of Crowdflower) identified over 40 separate themes, which were grouped into 10 overarching topics, as seen in the illustration produced by JESS3. The report highlights specific trends that people feel most compelled to post in their gratitude journals on a daily basis. In the list are some expected items, such as people (family, friends, etc) and things (food, cars, clothes, etc). But there are some surprises in the rankings. Ranking above things/possessions are personal experiences, “self” and life, which includes posts about topics like time, hope, inspiration, health, god and more. Technology and entertainment ranked 8th (we’re sure Tech Cocktailers would have ranked it a bit higher), while jobs and money were slightly below that.
You can view details of the report here.
What is Thankfulfor?
Let’s back up a bit. In various posts on Tech Cocktail, we’ve alluded to or mentioned the site Thankfulfor.com. Created by Shiny Heart Ventures, a small product development company owned by Tech Cocktail CEO, Frank Gruber, and myself, the site is just over a year old, and in that time, has become a very special place. We often use it to thank our Tech Cocktail sponsors and demoers after events and for other work-related reasons, but we’ve never done a post on it. Given we’ve now entered the season of gratitude, I think we can talk about it openly.
Thankfulfor is a micro-journaling site that asks journal-keepers the simple question: What are you thankful for? Users can post their answers in up to 500 characters (with a photo), and save each item to their personal “gratitude journal” for private consumption or to share in the “public stream of thanks”. Social users can send each Thankfulfor post to their social networks on Facebook and Twitter, spreading the good vibes far and wide.
With the site’s most recent update, users can now post photos of what they are thankful for, follow inspiring journals from other members, create a personal profile and have more meaningful interactions across the community. Android and iPhone apps will be released soon.
in January, 1996, millions of people around the world heard Oprah say: If you keep a daily “Journal of Gratitude,” it will change your life. People took her up on that. She helped make “Simple Abundance, A Daybook of Comfort and Joy,” by Sarah Ban Breathnach, a book about gratitude, a best seller. I bought it for my mom and read it, and I kept a hand-written journal on and off through the years. Finally, in 2008, I decided there should be a very open and social version online for a contemporary audience, separate from any religious affiliations. Frank liked the idea so we went in on it together.
‘Tis the season to be grateful!
We invite you to express your gratitude at Thankfulfor.com. As someone once told us, “it’s like PostSecret, but positive and inspiring”. If you do make a post, consider making it a year-long habit. Next year at this time as you look back upon your entire 2011 journal, you’ll be thankful you did.
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