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Ping Pong for Social Good?

March 2, 2011

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How are tech geeks using the game of ping pong to inspire a social good initiative?

A group called TechiesGiveBack, a nonprofit that looks for ways the tech community could give back, launched an event called BackSpin2011. The idea was to raise money for a charity organization called Child’s Play. No, not the creepy Chuckie movies. Child’s Play is a non-profit organization that provides books, games and video game consoles to hospitals across the country.

So what was BackSpin 2011?

Using Xbox’s Kinect, TechiesGiveBack provided a fun atmosphere with their ping pong tournament. Several tech companies around the NYC area took part in the action, including CollegeHumor.com, Google, The New York Times and Foursquare. Some of the players competed on team levels while a few competed individually. In addition to the virtual table tennis game, TechiesGiveBack also provided an open bar, MCs from CollegeHumor and even some crazy costumes in the mix. Using a virtual tournament provided a more level playing field for everyone involved than hosting a real ping pong tournament.

Was the event a success? Absolutely. The half party/half networking event raised $12,000 for Child’s Play. Who says helping out can’t be fun? More info about the tournament can be found at Mashable.

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