Tag Archives: seesmic

Oral his-stories

We like to talk, don’t we? At least some of the time. Chatting, telling stories over and over in different ways and with different embellishments, all the while helping us to work out who we are and who we’re not, what we might choose to be or do next. But also who we’ve been, who did what, what’s been done (or tried) what’s been talked about before and so what’s fun to talk about again.

I’ve found this history bit interesting in online communities. It’s not as important to some people as it is to others but I often find myself playing the role of reminding groups of what was said before and why, as a reminder of where we’ve been together, why we took certain decisions together or else to help out a newcomer who’s repeating the mistakes of the past, going down a real blind alley.

I was reminded of it when coming into contact with some of the “old-time” seesmicers at LeWeb. It’s only a year since the peak of seesmic for me, but a lot of what we were talking about is lost. And I noticed this at the time that as the community grew quickly there were a set of first behaviours or topics that were obvious when yu were new. But because seesmic didn’t have an inherent way of recording what we’d learned, the understanding and the rituals and traditions that came about could only stay alive as lng as the people there were willing to keep talking about them and reminding each other of them. The traditions were loosely held, it only took a few people to make up a new tradition and for a few people to leave for a once fiercely guarded tradition to be discarded.

There were many reasons why my seesmic activity tailed off, but one of them was that a greater proportion of my time was spent on watching new people go through the initial phases and I was left either waiting for them to catch up or spending my time helping them to catch up more quickly. Less time for me to be creative and just enjoy the flow.

There sees to be a difference for example between talking to people at Tuttle about how it all started and what I think of it all, between that and the tangible stuff on the web that you might find if you were bothered to research it. Does that mean I need to write down more of what I say to new people every week? Or has the saying f it been enough, are there enough people who know the story in rder for it survive without any other effort? Or might that lead to a distorted story? Is it important? Is it valuable? What would be lost if it were forgotten? And what is the definitive story anyway? Is there one? Or is it that my version is dominant because of my role and repeated attendance?

Dunno.

Videoblog Masterclass – Using video as a social technology

I am the master
I thought I’d write about the stuff I took to my videoblogging masterclass last week. I’d like to repeat the process with other clients – and maybe a public one – it worked well in a small group of communications specialists and people from lines of business. I’d have liked to have done it all more openly too, but one of the requirements from the client was that everything was kept private (it was part of an internal conference on risk management)

I started with my background in social media as a whole and how I’ve been thinking about it helping internal communications and knowledge management for as long as I’ve been blogging.

Then I took a look at the technology. I started with the obvious – get a DV camera, point it at someone and record what they’re saying. I then showed how to simply take that footage, edit it quickly using Windows Movie Maker, add a title and some credits and create a movie file. I think this is simple now and there are tutorials all over the web, but I forgot how complicated it can seem if you’ve never seen it before.

Then I looked at video clips as conversations, using seesmic as an example. We looked at some conversations and saw how being informal helps to convey more information. I talked about how the community had grown up and about my experience of meeting and building relationships with people I’d known about before, but never got to know properly until we “met” on seesmic.

And finally we looked at mobile video – briefly touching on using your phone to record files, edit and transfer to the web like this master, but focusing mainly on live streaming, using qik as an example. I’m very grateful to Jackie at qik for shipping me an N82 so that I could demo this properly (and I seem to have really gotten the bug since then!) I’m not sure that the whole group in the class fully understood what was going on but one or two were gobsmacked and very excited by the potential of this.

We spent the second half of the morning talking about the cultural impact of doing this sort of thing, the risks involved and the kinds of practical applications that they could envisage. And then (oh noes!) we got onto why any use of video would be difficult (read “nigh on impossible”) in their current IT environment. This also led onto an interesting discussion about broadcast versus narrowcast and an understanding that not everything that gets published needs to be accessed by everybody else.

So yeah, give me more of these please.