Here are my slides from my talk entitled Platforms & Practices at the first Think Digital Cardiff event.
This was a bit of a freeform talk about social media. There are no bullet points! Its purpose was to inspire people to think about creative use of digital media. Some quick notes follow.
Platforms & Practices: the general point was that it’s not enough to say you’re using tool X, a platform such as YouTube or Twitter or the web itself. I want to highlight the question of practices – what are you doing and how is it benefitting your work? If there is no practice then you are just playing with the platform, which is fine as long as you’re aware of that. The two need to be there together if you have a hope of any work-related strategy.
Collaboration: I deliberately began with Google Docs as a suggested improvement over email attachments for some situations. It’s an example of online collaboration with colleagues on documents, an easy thing that gives us a hint of what could be possible with bolder forms of collaboration. (At the bar afterwards someone mentioned that true collaboration is about working with people from different disciplines which was a good point. I could have added here that it’s about the practice as well as the platform of Google Docs. But we had to start somewhere.)
The cloud: it just means servers. I’m personally uncomfortable with the term ‘cloud computing‘.
Wikipedia: another glimpse of what is possible when people use social software to collaborate. Also available in Welsh, Spanish, German, Japanese, etc.
Ravelry: a social network for knitting enthusiasts. But we know that hobbies are big on the web.
Here Comes Everybody: recommended book by Clay Shirky, about easier group formation
giffgaff: just one example of a business which nurtures an online ‘community’ to fix problems and cut customer service and marketing costs. Some of the community members know more than the staff about aspects of real world use. I really wanted to emphasise that this is not merely Social Media Marketing. Mobile phone networks are an interesting area – they play to the network, including friends and family deals. The network effects keep people using the system and give value to people according to their connections/friends/etc.
National Theatre Wales Community: we worked on the strategy and trained the team. A very interesting project, with some unexpected outcomes in terms of how people participated.
1 / 9 / 90 guideline: there are wisdoms around online communities and participation. You can gather metrics on many things that are important to you, much more than just member count.
OnePeople documentary: commissioned to celebrate Jamaica’s 50th anniversary of independence. A superb example of remix and social video. Maybe the fact they’ve booked Kevin MacDonald to edit the DIY videos is the most conventional
Remix by Lawrence Lessig, another recommended book
YouTube: there is a culture of YouTube. It can be about you and your DIY video, made on a phone camera or Flipcam. It can be a mistake to hire an expensive crew with professional editing. It doesn’t have to be about broadcast quality or production values.
It’s all about your second video: just a thought that you should probably go through the process of making a short video (maybe just a conversation about your subject or industry, forget about overt marketing pitches) and uploading it. Then you have gone through the ‘initiation process’. It’s the beginning. You might get a comment, etc.
Platforms & Practices is also about play. You can experiment on a personal account. This informs your practices as a company.
There it is, there wasn’t much time to elaborate further but a lot of hints that people will have found useful – I hope.