CNET News Video
Bill Gates tries his hand at tweeting, bloggingMicrosoft's chairman tells CNET's Ina Fried he is excited to once again have a public online presence and plans to post new items to his Web site several times a week.
[ Music ] ^M00:00:04 >> Ina Fried: You've been going all these places, having all these experiences. For a long time, I know you've sent emails to some of the people you're closest with. Now you're starting to broadcast that a little more broadly, I understand. You just joined Twitter, obviously, and you're launching a new site, Gates Notes [phonetic], where you share some of these things. What are some of your goals with these new methods of communication? >> Bill Gates: Well, the internet's tailor-made for the kind of activities I'm involved in, because when I take a trip, we have all these photos and... that were things that were fun and exciting, and if people wanna see that, it's very easy to put it up there. It's almost no additional work at all. If I read a book... some people are considering whether to read that book or just want a short understanding of what that's like. And so I think it's gonna be a lot of fun to be sharing on an ongoing basis and people who are interested in a particular topic can just find that piece and go after that. Because the variety is such, nobody's gonna be interested in all of it. And it'll help guide me... the interest in some of the energy things I've been doing is very high, and so I'll elaborate more on that. You know, it's great to be part of a virtual community, and I've sort of been out of it because after I left Microsoft, I didn't create my own web presence. So for the last few months, I've been thinking about it, decided to go ahead and... these last few days, I've sent out quite a few tweets and I'll learn about this and it'll keep me up to date. >> Ina Fried: It seems like these social media are actually changing a lot of the work that your foundation and other global philanthropy do in terms of getting communication in a different way. One of the places we've seen this is the response to the earthquake with Haiti. We've seen text-based donations coming in, a lot of peer pressure of friends saying, "Have you donated?" How much do you think social media is changing? Is it making the work that the foundation does easier? Is it just a different means of communication, and you have the same level of interest that's always been there? >> Bill Gates: Well, I think it's more of an opportunity than an established thing. The overall generosity of America to these developing world causes is higher than most countries, but still quite modest. And you'll often, you'll see a peak in a disaster, but the real needs are the ongoing needs and, so then you'll see the drop-off. The opportunity to have ongoing awareness, where somebody can pick a particular country or particular disease, the needs in farming, whatever they're interested in, and feel involved, that they understand where they could travel, where they could give their time, where they could give money, what the policy issues are to be as a voter having an impact. I think the opportunity is quite dramatic, and yet, so far the gross numbers in terms of generosity are not substantially changed from the past. So it's still in front of us to have that benefit. ^M00:03:12 [ Music ]