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Carter Gibson
Works at PicsArt
Attended American University
Lives in San Francisco, CA
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Carter Gibson

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Community Manager Appreciation Day, #CMAD , is a strange day for me. Still in its relative infancy, I can't help but shake the thought that CMAD exists to give all of us Community Managers a chance to explain, defend, and broadcast what it is, exactly, we do. If my experience on the east coast taught me anything, this profession is a nuanced, generally poorly understood profession. So, in the spirit of what I think CMAD is, I'd like to write about what it means, to me, to be a Community Manager.

Luckily, I've had a lot of practice explaining what I do - specifically to my parents. Over the years, I've tried all sorts of explanations ranging from "I'm the voice of the customer to the company, and vice versa" to "My job is to retain valuable customers after they're brought into the app" to many other variations. A cornerstone of all of my explanations is that I'm a marketer and that happy, passionate communities have intrinsic value. This, undoubtedly, leaves people saying, "Wow! That's great!" while at the same time wondering what my day-to-day activities and what kind of company would pay me a living wage. Through all of the confusion about me working in support (a personal pet peeve of mine), I'm generally pleased with how understanding most people are. I guess I have the total weirdness of Silicon Valley to thank for that. "Oh, that's what you do? Well, if we can have a startup that sends your enemies glitter, I guess your job seems pretty reasonable."

Damn straight it's reasonable!

One of the most important lessons I ever learned as a Community Manager is that my job is to support the community that already exists instead of viewing my job as a "Community Builder". No matter where you are, no matter what industry, no matter how small your company, you already have a community if you have customers. My job is the reach out to those people and give them the tools they need to foster their own communities. With Community Management essentially revolving around organic metrics, I don't like to measure my success on the size of my community or on any 'salesman tactics'. If I have to sell someone on being a part of my community, they probably won't stay long or will end up being toxic. I prefer to identify passionate people and reward them with more tools to do what they love doing (like beta programs over free 'swag'). 

So if my metric for success isn't something like 'Number of Twitter Followers' (Product Marketing does this by the way), what is my metric? It's engagement. It's retention. It's fixed bugs or product influence. Sometimes, it's even stories. 

In gaming, if I could boost the number of attacks-per-hour with a development-light feature that also solved a player concern (for instance, having a hard time getting experience points), it would be a success for me and validate my... well... worth. If I can sit in on a product meeting and say, "Ohhhh. No. Don't do that. The community will literally shit themselves" thanks to my understanding of my users and avoid a clusterfuck, I've done my job. If I can motivate the team by sharing an inspiring story about how a user did something great with our app, I feel happy. If more people answer, "From a friend" when answering a survey about why they used the app, I can assume that I've done what I'm supposed because organic growth is super tough to track - so I'm just going to take (at least some) credit. :)

At the end of the day, I've found that people are relieved to know that companies employ someone who is reading tweets and shit to represent their feedback to the company they're interacting with. With more Community Managers, we can show people that their opinions and preferences really do make it back to the people making the decision. I hate the ideas that so many people feel so detached from the brands they love and feel like they're just along for the ride. Now that we have hundreds of apps on our phones, I want to differentiate the ones I work on by connecting my users to both the brand and each other. Happy communities have intrinsic benefits. 

If you want to become a community manager, work for a company that believes that. Trust me. It will make your life a whole lot easier.
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Ich habe mir die Sendung angesehen als ob man zu mir sprechen würde, leider verstehe ich nicht das englische!
Aber trotzdem danke, ich denke nach!!+Carter Gibson:)) 
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Carter Gibson

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Yesterday, I gave notice at KIXEYE.

Leaving this company is hard for me. KIXEYE is absolutely filled to the brim with incredibly talented, fun, unique, and interesting people that I have loved seeing every day. I am truly entrenched in the culture here and have had a blast whether I'm in a meeting or winning at a KIXBALL game. (Seriously. My meetings were fun.) More importantly, every day was a new professional challenge. KIXEYE has allowed me to grow, learn, and experiment. I've become a better worker by being here and am grateful for every single chance I've had.

I debated with myself about when I would tell my friends about this, but came to the conclusion that I hate secrets and that I didn't want to surprise people on my last day when I'd be emotional. And I will be emotional. I'm a crier. Get ready KIXEYE. My tears are coming. Prepare your Beyonce playlist.

So where am I off to? What am I doing next? I'll leave that for another post, but I'm thrilled.
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Wonderful +Carter Gibson​
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I got to do something I never thought I'd be able to.

If you know me, you know that I have a huge thing for pandas. Specifically, I have a huge thing for red pandas. I think they are the fucking cutest, best, most stupid, most adorable creatures on the planet. Hands down. I never thought I would ever have the chance to get close to one, let alone touch one. I was wrong.

My boyfriend Shane (oh yeah. I've been dating this really hot, really nice, really awesome dude for 8months. More on that later...) told me weeks ago that I couldn't make  plans for Sunday. So I, of course, spent the coming days trying to figure out what we were doing. About an hour before we went, I figured it out. We were going to the zoo! BOOM BITCH! I figured it out. I'm a genius. I'm so smart.

Nope. I was wrong. Well, at least I didn't get the whole story.

As we're walking about the zoo, Shane is insistent that we go to the children's part of the zoo. This is very confusing for me, but hey - there's the insect house and some goats to pet. So I'm not too upset. While we're there, we run into the red pandas. Tenzing is San Francisco's red panda and the cutest red panda ever, and I make sure I spend a ton of time looking at him. I'm having the best time ever. He's eating grass. He's walking around. It's perfect. He's perfect. 

As we're walking to the goats that I want to pet while I pretend they're red pandas, a zookeeper shouts out, "Shane! Hey! How are you?" She's holding a cup. It has grapes in it. They chat for a bit and she says, "Okay! I'll get everything set up and I'll see you soon." I think this is strange, so I look at Shane and ask who that is. He says he met her at an event. Shane is a grant writer for the Red Panda Network. 

And then it hits me and I'm completely overcome with emotion.

By that I mean I am crying and in complete shock. I'm also embarrassed because it's Sunday and there are a lot of people at the zoo. I don't know if you've ever seen the Kristen Bell / Dax Shepard sloth video, but it was pretty close to that. 

Flash forward a few minutes later and I am doing something I never, ever thought I'd do in my entire life. I am feeding a red panda. His little nose touches me and one time he licked me. One time Tenzing took the whole grape and sorta choked a little bit and I was terrified because I knew I'd have to move if I accidentally killed San Francisco's prized red panda. He was fine. Just excited.

It was perfect :D
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U want to make history aaa
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Carter Gibson

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Every year, it's the same. But this year is better.

+Secret Santa this year has almost 500 wishlists already. Damn. What's special about this year is that we have an awesome new website and some seriously dedicated volunteers. Here's the deal: Secret Santa doesn't belong to just me any more. Sure, I created it, but it would be as broken this year as it was during the era of the spreadsheet if the other elves didn't do so much work. Secret Santa belongs to all of us now.

The reason we do Secret Santa is because we know that it improves people's lives. How do we know? Because they tell us. They show us. They share their stories. Every year, Secret Santa helps send joy to hundreds (thousands?) of people. It's awesome. It's truly, truly awesome.

That makes it all the more disheartening to me when I see people upset at minor bugs or minor usability issues on I don't like people to think of this as a service that they're entitled to. I want them to think of it as a "nice thing" that's "cool to have" around the holidays. Now, the people that are frustrated are in the minority, but man, if I haven't seen it.

At the end of the day, this is the simplest, easiest to use Secret Santa yet. It's that way because I and the elves feel passionately about making sure more holiday stories come out of it. That's what we're here to do: spread cheer. :)
budsara prawatvatchara's profile photoSudewa Perera's profile photoPaula Thomas's profile photoLuz Rodriquez's profile photo
I think you've done something fantastic here, and boo on petty people for being frustrated or feeling entitled. I have given back and picked something off one of the Elves(Unknown at the time) lists. It's not a lot, but I hope you know how great this thing is you guys do. Thank you, because you do need to hear it. Merry Christmas.  :)
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Carter Gibson

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Threats. Facebook. Intent. SCOTUS. And the First Amendment.

Awesome article from my friend Tess van den Dolder about threats on Facebook, intent, and the First Amendment. Also, I'm quoted in it - which makes it more awesome. Obviously.

"Social media is inherently different than an in-person conversation, sound bite, or even books. Statuses are often reactive, bite-sized chunks of information which often have certain context restricted by privacy settings or are posted to select audiences, but seen by unintended ones regardless,” Gibson explained to GVH Live. “Being a blogger, I've had my intent misconstrued despite having what I thought was an obvious tone or amount of sarcasm. There's a fine line between taking too many things seriously online and not taking enough seriously. I'm not sure where that line is, so I always try to engage in dialogue with a person to figure it out if I'm alarmed. Threats online are difficult. We say what we would in person, but the context is missing. I think anonymous threats are far more dangerous than ones from individuals because they don't have any context at all."
Source: Public Domain Anthony Elonis fancied himself a budding rapper, with an ex-wife that served as violent inspiration. He frequently posted statements on his Facebook page promising violence against his ex, as well as threats to kill everyone from his ex-coworkers to a federal agent. He even wrote about shooting up a kindergarten. Starting on Monday the Supreme Court is set to begin hearing arguments as to whether or not Elonis's...
Ricky Daniels's profile photoMikel King's profile photoJodie Renna's profile photoSkylar Starghill's profile photo
had you ever considered that corporations or the government could accomplish many extra-judicial goals by way of social media platforms that could be harmful to the person of natural individuals? when institutions take it upon themselves to do harm to civil publics (like the millenial cohort although they are cleverer than we assume), we must take as much notice as is possible (given that these superordinant actors command the agenda and provide the knowledge content).
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Carter Gibson

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Welcome to Post Racial America.

Be safe in your love and rage, #Ferguson .

Photo by @fordm
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Il y'a justice et justice !?!?!?
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Alright Google+! Who are your favorite artists / photographers?

Who deserves some love out there? +Mention them below!

You know, I'm just curious :)
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You're very welcome, +Victoria Johansson. :)
Even though I've missed your presence here, I'm glad to hear that your business is fruitful and apart from the last 2-3 weeks, I haven't been very active either. ;)
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Carter Gibson

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This coming week I will start as a Senior Community Manager at PicsArt - a photo editing, drawing tool, and social art community!

It was tough for me to leave the gaming industry. I love games. I admire the craftsmanship. I appreciate the strong gaming community. But, most of all, I've always been fascinated by visual storytelling. After studying film at American University, I decided once and for all that I need to be working in a creative space. I need to be somewhere that gives people tools to express themselves and be inspired by others.

Even though leaving gaming is hard, I realize that working for a creative platform, namely PicsArt, is the right move for me. This realization is strengthened by their mission and drive.

"We want to give freedom to our creativity and make the world a more beautiful place to live in."

That's something I can get behind. That's a mission that will make it easier to get up in the morning. So, am I stoked for this next adventure? You better believe it :)
PicsArt wants to change the world too. We want to give freedom to our creativity and make the world a more beautiful place to live in.
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Carter Gibson

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The last Christmas before a new tradition.

I get incredibly reflective around the holidays. Always. It was probably my dad's incessant joy for Christmas that eventually rubbed off on me to make me someone who plays Christmas songs before Thanksgiving and who says, "I love you. Seriously." to all of my closest friends. Every year on Christmas morning, my dad will make my mom and I sit at the top of stairs. He'll run down to turn on the Christmas lights and, when I was younger, set up a toy train. He'll then shout from downstairs, "I think Santa came.... Do you want to see?" After a photo at the top of the stairs, my mom and I will venture downstairs to see. 

This tradition has been carried out in Chesapeake, Virginia for almost as long as I can remember. We've done it over 20 times. This year will be the last year it happens.

In Chesapeake at least.

That's because my parents, ever the cunning planners for the future, have completed a new home. You see, my parents have had quite the journey. Starting their relationship young and poor, my dad took out a loan for a home that my mom thought was too much. He made her cry with the amount they'd have to pay each month. My dad isn't someone who likes to settle. Having grown up in a room with five siblings his entire life, he feels very strongly that a home should have space and, most importantly, a big bedroom for just him and the love of his life. So there they were. Broke, stressed, and working two jobs in Norfolk, Virginia.

As my mom completed school for clinical psychology and my dad came to grips with just getting back from serving as a helicopter pilot in Vietnam, they started talking about, well, me. I didn't exist yet, but I was in their plans. If I was going to exist, I was going to need a bedroom. So they moved to a bigger home. As I grew, they moved to an even bigger home. This home is where our top-of-the-stairs Christmas tradition takes place. 

Though we haven't moved in over 20 years, my parents seemingly sold and bought houses every few years. We had a home in Washington, DC where my dad spent the work week and we also had a beach house that we rented out all but a few weeks a year. I've always been proud of my parents for what they've been able to accomplish. But I don't think I've ever been as happy for them or as proud of them as I am this very second. 

Last year, my dad told me that we were selling the beach front property we had bought just a few years before. I didn't understand. I thought it was excessive. And, honestly, I was pretty attached to it. My dad didn't think it was good enough, so he informed that work had begun on a new property. A dream home, on the ocean. It would be the fifth house my dad has built. 

He assures me that it will not be his last. I told him he was crazy. He told me that he has one or two left in him.

I tear up as I write this, in front of the Christmas tree in my living room while my dad washes dishes. I'm calling out to him to make sure I have my facts right. You see, I think of this post as a permanent documentation of the way I'm feeling right this second. I want to remember it. I want to remember the tree the looks out on the street I grew up on. I wan to remember that I want to start a fire in the gas fireplace, but don't know how and am too embarrassed to ask dad like I am every year. I should know how to do that by now. I want to remember that my mom is upstairs taking a nap. I want to remember the guilt I feel for being so self-focused in 2014. I want to remember how happy I am because I've been so self-focused in 2014. I want it to sink in how special this moment, in this living room, is to me.

I want to remember this house and sitting at the top of the stairs before we sell it and move into our new home. 

Next Christmas we'll start a new tradition. I don't know what it will be. I don't know where the tree will be. I don't know how I'll sit at the top of steps since my new room opens up directly onto the living room. Will I remain trapped inside while my dad yells out that Santa came? Will I sleep downstairs so I can walk upstairs? What will happen when my parents are too old to carry presents to the tree in the morning? We'll have to figure out all of these things together.

It will be the first Christmas tradition that we figure out together. I can't wait. I'm so excited for the future as I try, desperately, to be in the present right now. When I wake up tomorrow morning, groggy, I will hold my mom extra tight at the top of the stairs. I might cry. I'm almost crying right now. My mom's awake from her nap and helping my dad with the dishes. They don't know how special this moment - this house - is to me in this very moment. It's my secret. I hate showing them that I'm sentimental. I don't want my dad thinking that he's rubbed off on me too much.
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hola que tal soy de Perú
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Carter Gibson

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With 15 days left in SF before the holidays...

I just couldn't justify buying a whole tree. I'll settle for this Charlie Brown-Inspired version until I go home to the real tree. ;)
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Secret Santa is here!
Add and browse wishlists here:

'Tis the season! #SecretSanta  has an all new, easier-to-do-everything-with website which will make gift giving even easier. Enjoy everyone. I love this time of year :)
Secret Santa starts today!
Add and browse wishlists here:

It's December. That means it's the season the spread joy, love, and tell the people who've impacted you that you appreciate them. This year for Secret Santa, we've streamlined our process (and website) to make it easier than ever before. 

Here's how it works:
- Go to here:
- Sign in with Google in the top right. 
- Add your wishlist with an explanation of why Secret Santa is important to you.
- Search, browse, and gift your friends or a stranger!

Create your Amazon wishlist here:

**IMPORTANT** Make sure you add an address! Instructions in this video:

Happy Secret Santa 2014! #Gplussanta   #SecretSanta  
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Yaaaaay :D
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Say it with me: I have racial bias.

I do. I have racial bias. I feel things sometimes that I know are unfair or racially motivated. Honestly, that's okay. We all do. Instead of getting defensive, I think we need to acknowledge the prejudices and biases we have in order to move past them. We need to be aware of our racial biases in our pursuit of equality. Unfortunately, I'm not seeing a lot of that introspection happening at a time it should be. Having racial bias doesn't make you racist. What makes you racist is the actions you choose to take with that bias in mind (or 'not in mind' if introspection isn't your thing). Oh, I have white privilege too. The same applies to it as well.

I saw a tweet last night that really resonated with me. It says: "White people: your privilege lives in the fact that you can be outraged, horrified, and upset about tonight. But you are not afraid." (via @jazzedloon) We need to stop being defensive about this privilege and thinking that having it means we aren't good people. Bottom line, you can't help it. You were born with it. You will die with it. How you deal with it is up to you, but we're going to move past this shit a lot faster if you acknowledge it.

Listen, I get it. Talking about race is really difficult, but talking about looting is really easy. Looting. It's wrong. Racial bias? Complicated. Nuanced. Challenging. Personally, I'm not that interested in talking about a small minority of people who abused a situation. Unfortunately, it appears that a ton of you, my Google+ peeps, are. From memes that imply black people don't have jobs to sarcastic comments about how this is "absolutely helping" to the "Why, I would never act that way!" statuses, the importance of the looting has been greatly exaggerated as people, once again, try to ignore the bigger issue and focus on something easier to understand.

To those people I say: May you never feel the anguish, frustration, or as shorted as the people protesting do now. Everyone reaches a breaking point. I empathize with the protesters, but I don't encourage violence. I say that with the knowledge that without justice, there can't be peace. Honestly, if I were in their shoes, I don't know what I would do. I'd probably want to set a car on fire too. You have no idea what it feels like to be born into a society that wasn't made for you. That doesn't mean I dismiss the actions of the looters, but it means I understand them. I try to look at all of it through that lens.

As an aside, I'm incredibly disappointed with my gay friends who say that the protests are too violent or over the top. Do you not remember what people did to get you your rights in the first place?

If you've noticed, I haven't said much about the actual verdict yet. That's on purpose. The reason why I haven't is because I'm not sure talking about it is productive yet. I'm not sure we're ready to talk about someone else's racial bias when we can't even acknowledge our own. We're not going to make any progress on deciding whether or not the grand jury made the right call if we're still thinking we aren't racist because we have black friends. So let's use this moment productively and think about what it means to have racial bias. If all we can see is looting, we have a long way to go.

I don't pray, but my thoughts are with you #Ferguson .
Asia Huggins's profile photoMarc Staniford's profile photoDy OH's profile photoJodie Renna's profile photo
I don't believe I'm racially biased anymore, at least nowhere near to the extent that I blame certain problems on race. I do acknowledge there remains much racial tension in the world, but that isn't the same thing as racial bias.

I would say that, if anything, I'm culturally biased. I do believe certain cultures exhibit superior traits which I admire, and these cultural views are not limited to race or ethnicity or region (though there is often a correlation between the two).

With regards to this whole Ferguson case, I don't know enough about it to provide a truly informed opinion (otherwise I would have posted it on my profile by now). However, I'm not entirely convinced this case was racially motivated, or that any racial bias really played a part in it. Obviously, media news outlets have touted it as such, and the riots and racial tensions are evidence enough that people believe this case to be a racially-motivated event. I've honestly not seen enough evidence of this, however, and refrain from any such claim.
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Sr. Community Manager, PicsArt | Founder, LittleBigFund
Community management, Nonprofit management, Event planning, Blogging
  • PicsArt
    Sr. Community Manager, 2015 - present
    • Show people off.
  • The LittleBigFund
    CEO & Founder, 2013 - present
    • Make everything happen
  • BIL Conference
    Google+ Community Manager, Organizer, 2012 - present
    • Create a presence for BIL on Google+, utilizing its unique tools to present ideas and host interviews with speakers • Grow the BIL Google+ page from zero followers to 2,400+ in 4months • Collaborate with the BIL community managers for Facebook and Twitter to create unique content strategies for each platform
  • Kixeye Inc.
    Community Manager, Mobile Games, 2013 - 2015
  • UserVoice
    Community Manager, 2012 - 2013
    • Represent user experience to the team to enhance product development and then communicate company positions back to our community • Improve our feedback product to help brands communicate with their users and users feel heard by their brands • Establish UserVoice as the thought leader in customer service by managing communication on Twitter, Facebook, and the UserVoice UserCentered blog through storytelling
  • HelpsGood
    Community Manager, 2012 - 2012
    • Unified the United Way's social media presence to create a stronger message while retaining a unique voice on various platforms • Consulted the United Way on how to successfully engage their audience both locally and nationally to assure an active, passionate, and reliable community • Reviewed analytical tools to best measure engagement on media platforms for the United Way and Bronx Zoo
  • Kogod Center for Career Development
    Peer Career Counselor, Marketing Intern, Coordinator, 2009 - 2012
    • Coached undergraduate business students to improve resumes and cover letters to propel career and personal development • Organized and executed various recruitment and networking events for 700+ graduate and undergraduate business students providing opportunities for employment resulting in favorable opinions from students and employers
  • The Ad Council
    Campaign Management Intern, 2011 - 2011
    • Simultaneously managed development stages of strategic creation, creative concepting, production, and promotion for the new Anti-Texting While Driving and Feed the Pig PSA’s in a team-oriented environment • Engaged agency creative directors and campaign sponsors directly to guide development of national campaigns • Created three campaign case studies to be featured on the new including the Smokey Bear, Buzzed Driving, and Adoption PSA campaigns to provide comprehensive insight from concepting to impact
  • RealEstate Business Intelligence
    Marketing Intern, 2011 - 2011
    • Created promotional material including publications, blog posts, website design, and newsletters highlighting product features • Produced four, 3 to 5 minute website tutorial videos using Final Cut Pro, After Effects, and Camptasia Studio for RBI's online platforms
  • American University
    Orientation Leader, 2009 - 2010
    • Facilitated honest, open discussions and activities for 2000 new freshman with a diverse team of 14 other leaders to address transitional issues, personally leading 500+ students over two years
  • Bean There Cafe
    Barista, Marketing and Events Coordinator, 2007 - 2009
    • Made delicious coffee for the amazing people who needed it • Coordinated special events and created a social media presence to represent Bean There's passionate community
  • YMCA
    Fitness Instructor, 2005 - 2007
    • My first, hellish job. Ask me about it!
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San Francisco, CA
Washington, DC - Virginia Beach, VA - Norfolk, VA
Contact Information
(757) 339-2410
CEO of The LittleBigFund | Community Manager | Accidental LGBT activist | Beer drinker | Dog lover | Gay techie
Hey! I'm Carter and I'm fascinated with how people interact with each other through technology. That fascination lead me to be a community manager and you all have empowered me to be an accidental LGBT activist and start a nonprofit. I'm not too much of any one thing and I promise to have fun.
American University
BS, Business Administration (Marketing)
BA, Film and Media Arts

I community manage...
Community Management - Career Development - Marketing - Campaign / Project Management - Event Planning - Blogging - Graphic Design

Interests / Possible Circles
Google - roller coasters - advertising - videogames - nonprofits - movies - beer - technology - music - marketing - social media - graphic design - art - LGBT - nonprofits - motion graphics

In summation
Meyers Briggs - ESTP
Enneagram - 2w3

And I'm gay. Google won't let me tell you any other way...

I'm not going to see every time you mention me. Don't be mad and keep bugging me if I don't respond :)

This account reflects only my personal thoughts and not that of my employers, clients, customers, or (most importantly) pets.
Bragging rights
Who I am here is who I am there, Top 150 (USA), Top 100 Men (USA)
  • American University
    Film & Media Arts, 2008 - 2012
  • American University
    Business Administration (Marketing), 2008 - 2012
  • Cape Henry Collegiate School
    2004 - 2008
Basic Information
Looking for
Friends, Dating, A relationship, Networking
July 11, 1990
Other names
Paul Randolph Carter Gibson, Carter Kel Gibson