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The Green Life: Help Merrell Build the World's Biggest Panorama

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May 25, 2011

Help Merrell Build the World's Biggest Panorama

Nature photographer Summer makes us pine for trees and sunny vistas. And surfing the web for gobsmacking views can take a while. On Monday, though, clothing-and-shoe company Merrell launched a site that compiles users’ favorite scenic views into a worldwide panorama. You can upload and anchor a photo with a pushpin anywhere on its digital globe, and the site then lines up your photo according to longitude.

Enough of cliched photos of hikers “overlooking pine-fringed fjords,” thought Ed Chilcott, who created this add-your-own-scenery campaign at advertising firm The Minimart. He didn't want to tell Merrell's customers where they should want to be, because, he explained, “Your idea of the perfect adventure should be very personal.”

Merrell then upped the ante by pledging to match every photo uploaded with $1, to donate up to $250,000 to conservation organizations including the National Park Foundation. We can’t decide what we like more: making a company give one more dollar to the trees or admiring a stand of young pines near a remote Russian village from our desk.

Other outfitters that give back to the land include Patagonia, which donates 1% of sales to eco-causes; L.L. Bean, which has given $6 million over the past three years to environmental nonprofits; and the North Face, whose Explore Fund brings children outdoors.

--Juliana Hanle

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