The Lab; Portnoy Media Group Blog

In an effort to raise awareness and funds for clean water access and conservation, is launching its first annual anti-water poverty campaign asking people to live on just four liters of water a day for up to five days.

LOS ANGELES, Calif., September 17, 2013– A staggering 783 million people worldwide do not have access to enough clean water to live a full and healthy life. Human beings need at least 4 liters (the equivalent of 2 large soda bottles) of water a day to survive and require closer to 50 liters a day to stay healthy in the long term. While nearly a billion people survive on just 4 liters of water a day or less, the average American uses up to 550 liters of water every day, the highest water consumption rate in the world.

“Access to clean water is a basic human right,” states George McGraw, Executive Director, DIGDEEP Water. “Here in the U.S. we consume so much water with such easy access, that we often forget water’s importance to human lives and livelihoods. Even in the U.S. nearly 13% of Native Americans lack clean water or working toilets. Water poverty is more prevalent in under-developed countries; 4,500 children die every day from water borne diseases, and nearly 80% of disease worldwide stems from dirty water. But this is a crisis that affects everyone, and it’s time we find the perspective we need to take action.”

The 4Liter Challenge (4Liters) is a way for anyone to experience the daily struggle of living on a limited amount of water. The challenge exposes Americans to the true value of clean water and provides them with a deeper connection to water access projects combating poverty worldwide. People are encouraged to sign up at, an interactive web tool that will help them fundraise, live-blog and share their experiences across social networks. also offers a free multi-disciplinary curriculum for middle and high school educators bringing themes of water poverty and human rights into the classroom.

One hundred percent of funds raised will be sent to DIGDEEP water access projects in South Sudan, Cameroon, and New Mexico. These sustainable projects are built in partnership with local communities in tremendous need. DIGDEEP’s human rights-based model varies from the work of other water charities by using sustainable technology for its water projects and customized, community-led solutions to achieve basic human rights such as health and safety, gender equity, economic empowerment, and prosperity.

Participants and schools are welcome to learn more about water poverty and take The 4Liter Challenge by signing up at The site also features an informational video featuring David Henrie (Wizards of Waverly Place), Jennifer Cadena (The Roommate) and narrated by Drake Bell (Drake & Josh). All participants will live off of 4 liters of water per day for 2-5 days the week of October 14th (October 14 – October 21, 2013). 4Liters aims to transform public perception of water, water consumption and its value and impact on human life. For more information on DIGDEEP please visit




About DIGDEEP Water

Launched in 2011 by international human rights lawyer George McGraw, DIGDEEP is a human rights organization defending and sustaining access to clean water for everyone worldwide. Changing the way people think about water, DIGDEEP focuses on education and advocacy programs exposing people to the issues and solutions of water poverty, consumption and conservation. Through its sustainable and customizable water access projects DIGDEEP has successfully transformed the lives of thousands of people in South Sudan, Cameroon and the Navajo Nation in New Mexico. DIGDEEP is committed to ending the injustice of water poverty and 100% of all donations support their water projects in the field. To learn more visit   

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Portnoy Media Group uses the influence of social networks to expand your organization's voice and tell your story. We connect people with your mission and enable your brand to be shared, discovered, and connected. Work with us as we empower your organization to dramatically extend your online presence and increase donations.

Speakeasy – Bill Hader


Check out this interview with Bill Hader talking about stand up comedy, his roll on SNL and writing for South Park.


It’s important to tell your story but it’s also important to show your tribe behind the scenes. Give them the inside scoop.

Paul F. Tompkins has a great rapport with his guests – check out the ManMade show here.

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Elmore Leonard’s Ten Rules of Writing


We lost a great writer today. Elmore Leonard is responsible for many stories that I love including Get ShortyOut of SightHombreMr. Majestyk and Rum Punch, which was filmed as Jackie Brown. Leonard’s short stories include ones that became the films 3:10 to Yuma and The Tall T, as well as the current TV series on FXJustified.

Here are his 10 rules on writing, may we all learn from this master storyteller.


1. Never open a book with weather.
2. Avoid prologues.
3. Never use a verb other than “said” to carry dialogue.
4. Never use an adverb to modify the verb “said”…he admonished gravely.
5. Keep your exclamation points under control. You are allowed no more than two or three per 100,000 words of prose.
6. Never use the words “suddenly” or “all hell broke loose.”
7. Use regional dialect, patois, sparingly.
8. Avoid detailed descriptions of characters.
9. Don’t go into great detail describing places and things.
10. Try to leave out the part that readers tend to skip.

My most important rule is one that sums up the 10. If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it.

Elmore Leonard




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Behind the Scenes with 4Liters


4 Liters is the next campaign from DIGDEEP, a human rights organization that defends water access. They work on the 100% donor model and generally make the world a better place. We’re collaborating for 4Liters, a next generation experience on the need for access to clean water. The campaign launches in the month of October. Here’s a few pictures of the campaign video shoot this Saturday, starring David Henrie (Little Boy, Wizards of Waverly Place ) and Jennifer Cadena (The Roommate, Premonition).


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Top Story on Christianity Today

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Today’s Top News – Building Community

Earlier this year, I helped launch a project with Justin McRoberts. Today the top story on Christianity Today was on this project. See what they’re saying:

“The words “pastor” and “artist” aren’t often used for the same person, but Justin McRoberts is an exception that proves the rule. Co-pastor of a church in Concord, California, McRoberts is also a hard-working indie musician and author with a busy touring schedule.

McRoberts’s latest work, The CMYK Project, started with an encouraging letter he received at a difficult time. He began writing letters of his own, and commissioned three different artists to create artwork for a book containing them. What ties the book together is the idea that Jesus is master of everything—especially a community full of lovely, crazy, terrible, and forgiven people. In addition to crafting the book, McRoberts wrote fifteen original songs as a soundtrack. These different elements combine,
much like the four printer’s inks of cyan, magenta, yellow, and black, to paint a compelling picture of life together under Christ’s lordship.”

Read the rest of the article here 

The FREE sample chapter and corresponding song are available at Noisetrade.
The whole project is available at his Web Store.
The book is discounted at Amazon.
The Album is getting great ratings at iTunes.

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Of Love and Facebook

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Fresh from the lab is a bit of silliness. It’s a story of love in the internet age.

Michael Moore –
Ryn Harrison –

Cinematography by Nate Harrison
Written and Directed by Dan Portnoy

Music by The Wannadies

Let us know what you think.

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Pure Charity Webinar

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Last weeks webinar has posted on the Pure Charity website.

This hour long webinar focuses on 4 goals:

  • How to think like a storyteller.
  • How to use your current tools for implementing a great story.
  • How to respect the channel.
  • How to jumpstart your next campaign.

Check it out today!


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CreativeMornings with Seth Godin

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Check out this great talk from Seth Godin from CreativeMornings back in May.


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Don’t Do This

You’re better than this. We’re better than this. let’s make the Internet a better place.

DogHouseDiaries created this comic as part of their ongoing series of awesome but I think it’s pretty dead on.



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Want To Tell A Good Story?


Join me this Thursday for a webinar hosted by Pure Charity on storytelling for non-profits. We’ll be talking about some key themes that every marketing manager and development director needs to consider for effective marketing strategy.

The webinar happens  this Thursday, Jul 11, 2013 at 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM PDT

Register here or click the picture – See you there!


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