Ok, let's be real for a second.
If you're like us, you've seen/heard a lot of corporate BS and double-speak. Company says one thing, does another. Sometimes even the complete opposite. The ideals on the wall poster are pretty much that; window-dressing being passed off for good citizenship.
And whether you're an organization or an individual, it is hard to be perfect. We're not perfect. You're not perfect (though tbh if you really are, we're hiring). And that's fine - this isn't about perfection - this is about progress. It's about consistently standing behind (and up to) the values you hold and trying your best.
We are all equal, beautiful, and unique humans with the potential to create progress in our own lives, for our friends and family, and in our community.
So when we say "Our mission is to help you live better, work better, and change the world on your terms" here's what we really mean:
No one should live in poverty, be a victim of climate injustice, or suffer from a lack of access to basic needs and care. That's our collective priority #1. Next, we need to make real improvements in each other's lives: health, happiness, love, sustainable living, and the opportunity to do meaningful work.
Work sits at the center of human potential - our ability to create and innovate. We believe everyone has a right to do meaningful, fulfilling work and earn a livable wage. Research consistently shows purposeful work is one of the top deciding factors of your overall happiness.
Change the World (Your Way)
There are a lot of things in the world we need to make better. And a lot of ways you can get involved and create positive change. Whether you're just looking to volunteer a few hours in your free time for a worthy cause, or find a new job that aligns with your values and passions - we're here to help.
Since we also think it's important to pick sides and take a stand on issues that matter, here are a few other things we believe in and want to make clear:
We will only succeed if we embrace different people and perspectives. That's true for us, our hometowns, and for the world at large. At Brightest specifically, we have to be champions for diversity, tolerance, and equal treatment of people, regardless of where they’re from, who they love, who they identify as, how they look, or what they believe. We are still not diverse enough yet as a company and we need to aggressively push ourselves to get there.
We will continue to work on, talk about, and problem-solve for these three issues for as long (and as aggressively) as we can. As a company policy, content that does not align with these views will not be allowed to exist on Brightest (and if it somehow slips through will be removed immediately when it's ID'd). Moreover, we will consistently strive and constantly question ourselves how we can be a more socially-responsible organization, from carbon offsetting our fossil fuel travel and servers to only buying and using sustainable products and services in the office.
This same mission inspires our tree commitment. Every time you or another member of our community completes an action in Brightest via the "completed this" button, we plant one tree 🌳 through a local reforrestation partner.
Sign up, take action, then mark it complete - that's one more tree to make our air fresher and our earth better. If you send us a photo of you completing it to firstname.lastname@example.org or tag @brightest_inc, we'll make it two 🌳🌳.
Through our "One Action, One Tree" program and additional renewable energy purchasing, we are (and will remain) a Net Zero organization.
By the same token, we will always hold our partners to the same high sustainability standards, and are prepared to walk away from ones who demonstrate they are unable to meet them.
Capitalism is not intrinsically bad - but it can become toxic when it becomes abusive and unfair. As a basic competitive system of (financial) incentives that rewards innovation and consumer need problem-solving, capitalism has done tremendous good for the world in terms of raising global standards of living, reducing infant mortality, and enabling creations that make our lives better (and if you don't believe us please go read these pages of data and studies from independent researchers at Oxford University confirming it).
However, unchecked, unregulated, and immoral capitalism - capitalism that is only focused on maximizing profits at the expense of workers and regardless of the social costs - is something we will not stand for, and - alongside our community - will fight in solidarity to amend. That's the form of capitalism that's currently polluting our Earth, dismantling our education system, and looking to diminish the moral dignity of an honest day's work. And we must put a stop to it. We can be economically successful and give quality education, healthcare, and purposeful work to everyone.
In our own work, we make sure every employee is treated with the highest respect as a valued shareholder. Our people's success is our success. We fully recognize this fact, and are putting this in writing on the Internet so we never forget that pledge.
Unlike some other products and services - there's nothing to equivocate about here. Hate, racism, violence, harassment, bullying, bigotry, and any form of abuse has no role in discourse and will not be tolerated. We firmly believe in free speech, and you are welcome to air whatever views you believe - but be prepared for the consequences and if you do it on Brightest one consequence is we will kick you the f*ck out.
We are also actively working tolerance and safe-space priorities into our product roadmap, so we can proactively protect our community, minimize bad actors, and avoid issues we've seen play out on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and other platforms. It may slow us down, but it's the right thing to do.
A basic income is a periodic, recurring cash payment unconditionally delivered to everyone on an individual basis, without means-test or work requirement. We believe some level of basic income should exist in all wealthy countries - at least universally applied to lift people currently living in poverty out of poverty.
We believe this for two reasons:
The first ties back to our core belief in human potential. We think people are natural artists, caretakers, and problem-solvers, yet many have this agency revoked because reality (and economic pressures) force them to invest all their time and energy meeting basic needs for themselves and their family. Universal basic income could alleviate this and help unlock more human potential in both happiness-creating art and job and prosperity-creating entrepreneurship.
The second is our belief that "AI" or "artificial intelligence" (form of machine learning and deep learning) will significantly reshape the workforce in the coming decades. Some jobs will be eliminated - some jobs will be created. But ultimately we see no future scenario that doesn't create the need for major shifts in workforce re-education, re-skilling, and job transition, and we think UBI should be enacted as policy to ease these shifts and help better position people to participate in purposeful work.
The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was founded in 2003 in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks as an agency intended investigate criminal terrorist activity of foreign nationals in the United States and to enforce immigration laws. However, in the years since (and particularly under the Trump administration and Republican Congress), ICE has become a vehicle of white supremacy that has committed consistent human rights violations against innocent, immigrant (and in some cases, U.S. citizen) families and children.
While certain sub-sections of ICE do engage in morally responsible work prosecuting illegal human trafficking and child pornography, the overall agency has stretched far beyond its original post-9/11 mandate in its morally reprehensible persecution of immigrant communities.
We belive immigrants are human beings worthy of respect who deserve a right to life, freedom, the pursuit of happiness, due process, and core human rights protections that ICE consistently denies and violates.
Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.
You got this 👌