Many different chat apps exist. This page will help you choose which one to use for your organisation. Also make sure to check out our guide on how to use chat apps for campaigning.
TL;DR: We recommend activists to use Signal. It is the most privacy-friendly chat app that is easy to use as well.
We only share tools we really like. We are not being paid to recommend them. Feel free to add the tools that you use and tell us why you like them in the comments!
The applications will be compared looking at our five evaluation criteria:
We have reviewed the chat apps below. If you would like another app to be reviewed, let us know in the comment section. They are sorted by popularity.
The chat apps below are best suited for small to medium sized groups. It is also possible to use these chat apps for larger movements, but it will become harder to keep an overview. Most chat apps have a maximum number of members for group chats. As your movement grows, you might want to look at the section below about communication tools for larger organisations.
Once your movement becomes larger and harder to organise, you will likely start creating working groups that are responsible for managing one aspect of your organisation. For example, in your climate movement, you might want to have one group working on social media, one for organising protests and another one working on reaching out to climate scientists.
The tools below use channels to categorise the different groups of your organisation. It is possible for individuals to join the various channels that they are interested in. You can also join a channel, but mute it so that you do not get overwhelmed with notifications. For coordinators, having all these channels in one app helps them to keep an overview of what is happening. In addition, these fools offer various integrations with other apps such as Google Drive, social media, your calendar and email.
The apps below are developed specifically for larger organisations and thus have extensive functionality to help you communicate as efficiently as possible. However, having such extensive functionality also means that members of your movement will have to learn how to use these tools. People will have to download a new app and they will have to become accustomed to checking it regularly for updates. All of this might make it harder for new activists to join your movement. As your organisation grows, you will have to find a balance between accessibility and efficiency. You might want to consider using a combination of both simple chat apps for newcomers, and dedicated communication tools for activists that are already more involved with your movement.