New Media

Conference Communication Tools

Posted in New Media, Uncategorized on April 6th, 2011 by admin – Be the first to comment

Conference Communication in the Virtual Age

I cannot believe it’s been almost a month since SXSW. It was my first time attending what has become a mega conference. It happens in three parts: interactive, film and music. I attended the interactive session March 11-15. More than 15-thousand people descended upon Austin, TX for a week of raucous fun and fellowship. The key to SXSW is relationship building. As we prepare for the National Association of Black Journalist’s annual convention in Philadelphia, August 3-7. I wanted to share some of the tools I used or at least heard about at SXSW. And of course, a few I’ve known about and haven’t had a chance to try.

Moo Cards-Moo cards are mini-business cards. They’re like Twitter. Twitter is micro-blogging, a shorter version of blogging. Moo cards are a smaller version of business cards. Be aware the print is tiny. Therefore, be considerate of the audience to which you plan to distribute. Don’t laugh, if you’re not 40 yet, as my Daddy often said, just keep livin.’

Hashable- post and share the people you meet via Twitter and get their contact information seamlessly. It will also show an accurate network of who you connect with the most. It’s a dynamic ‘relationship book’ updated with everyone you meet on the spot. You can also discover new people by seeing who your friends are meeting. You can create an inner circle to highlight members in your network. I tried to use this one a little. Still need to experiment. Oh yeah, this is a mobile app.

Beluga-is a mobile app allowing groups to communicate. One person creates the group. Consider it a room. Then he/she sends out an email invitation for others to join. Once you are a member, you can invite others as well. Then, you can share messages. You must have the app and be a member of the group. It’s a group IM moment. For example, you can let people know you’re hungry and at a certain restaurant or that you’re attending a really great session.

GroupMe-is a mobile app allowing groups to communicate with each other privately. It is based on your mobile number. This is why some opt to use Beluga. Many don’t want third parties to get access to their number. We used Beluga as our back channel to connect the Blacks in Tech group at SXSW. But GroupMe functions the same way.

QR Codes- can be used to embed your website address, contact information and phone number. It’s easy to do. Follow the link and try it. You will need to down load a QR reader for your phone. I have QR Reader, Microsoft Tag Reader, 2D Sense and LiveReader on my mobile device.

Bump –Unlike the fist bump making the President and First Lady news for cultural reasons, bumping iPhones or Androids can transfer your contact information virtually.

Google Goggles-allows you to take a picture of various things including landmarks, books and even business cards. When you take a picture of a business card, the information can then be stored in your contact information.

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Color-is hot off the press and surrounded by controversy. However, when used strategically especially by journalists in breaking news situations, it can be useful. In addition, it may be fun at a professional conference. I experimented with it with my students. We learned that indeed you have to be in the same proximity with the other people uploading pictures. A stream of pictures is created and shareable and embeddable. I can see this being interesting for example at NABJ’s Salute to Excellence gala. Think about everybody with the app, taking pictures and stream is created. Then, we can share that stream to promote the organization. In addition, for breaking news, it will be helpful to news organizations to be able to show an event been covered from multiple angles, weather comes to mind. Privacy issues abound and the crowd has to self-censor. Of course, who wants their boss to see them in a compromising position? Well, come to think of it, cheaters and creepers beware. Watch this video of serial entrepreneur Bill Nguyen’s take on his latest invention.

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This list is not exhaustive. This is just a snapshot of what’s in my brain at the moment. Please feel free to comment and share your wisdom. Collective intelligence should always be leveraged.


Posted in Dr. Syb, multimedia maven, New Media, skittles, social media on March 11th, 2009 by sybril – Be the first to comment

Alright, so I don’t even eat Skittles, but I’m loving them right now. Last week, Skittles went totally social media and revamped their home page. Now when you visit the site, you get a navigation box in the top left corner. The box is a tad annoying but you can make it smaller by clicking on the negative sign on the top right corner of the box.

When you click on product information, you are sent to the Skittles’ Wikipedia page. When you click on media and select video, you are sent to their You Tube page, for friends you get Facebook, for chatter, you get Twitter and for photos to their Flickr page.

In my mind, this strategy is priceless in so many ways. I know some will surely argue that placing company information on Wikipedia is a dicey a proposition. Given the fact that Skittles surely has some of the folks who used to work in public relations monitoring the site, it should be just fine.

Don’t get caught up in the criticism. Get caught up in the innovative thinking, the crowdsourcing and the cost effectiveness, not to mention the free publicity they received just for making the change. Yes, they’ve relinquished control and opened every door for dialogue possible. Now, the public can tell them exactly what they want and the folks at Skittles have an opportunity to answer.

Dr. Syb and Dr. Barb Liveblogging at ONA

Posted in Columbia College, Dr. Syb, Ifra Newsplex, Liveblogging, New Media, ONA '08 on October 29th, 2008 by sybril – Be the first to comment

Just received this photo from one of the students who worked in the newsroom at the Online News Association. It’s me and my colleague, Dr. Barb Iverson a professor at Columbia College in Chicago. Barb’s blog is the Current Buzz. We met five years ago at an Ifra Newsplex seminar at the University of South Carolina in Columbia.

She’s a multimedia player to watch if you plan to be in the virtual game.

Amusing Ourselves to Death

Posted in Neil Postman, New Media, Postmodern Discourse on October 20th, 2008 by sybril – Be the first to comment

I was truly a TV baby, I grew up watching endless hours of I Love Lucy, the Brady Bunch, Good Times, Bewitched, Batman, the Carol Burnett Show, All in the Family, Gilligan’s Island and the list goes on. However, I knew the value of an education. I always wanted to be intelligent. I also knew how to separate fiction and non fiction. My mom would have killed me if I tried some of the things that I saw on tv. With the rise of the entertainment media and blurring of the lines between reality and make believe, I can’t help but reflect on Neil Postman’s book, Amusing Ourselves to Death. In a nutshell, he asks what are the long term ramifications of a visual society as opposed to a text based one. Reading is an exercise in brain extension while watching is an exercise in brain numbing.

Given recent events, caricatures on Saturday Night Live, so many appearances on late night talk shows and other entertaining endeavors, one asks is it better to have entertainers in the White House or intellectuals? It’s just a question. Looking at America’s history with the Kennedy-Nixon debate and the Warren Harding effect as described Malcolm Gladwell’s book Blink, a reality check is in order. On the run, let me know what you think.

Blogging Blind

Posted in Change, New Media, traditional media on September 17th, 2008 by sybril – Be the first to comment

This morning I had my first eye exam in about seven years. Fortunately, I still have 20/20 vision, however, right now, my vision is sorely hampered. My eyes were dilated. The Doctor suggested I read a magazine until the eye solution started to work. Of course, that wasn’t possible because my focus was changing by the second. So, I decided to use my recorder application on my iPhone. I recorded my thoughts instead of writing them. I responded to a disruptive technology by adapting. This is what traditional media have got to do. It’s not a matter of trying one thing and then saying, “okay, we’ve tried it and it’s done.” That is a completely unrealistic and unacceptable approach.

The traditional media have had their “eye dilated.” They can’t see things the same way anymore. Things are out of focus. For a time, they couldn’t and or wouldn’t see the value of the new media. I wanted my notebook and paper so bad when I couldn’t see but I was forced to record my voice instead.

As I sat in the chair in the doctor’s office, the notion of The Audience 20/20 Manifesto was birthed. Traditional media must be transparent and allow the audience to see exactly what they are doing, how they are doing it and why they are doing it. The last point lends itself to the notion of objectivity which I will explore more deeply at another time. Suffice it to say, that our colleagues in Europe dislike the American media in some ways because they disclose their biases in the press whereas we do not do so formally.

At any rate, back to the idea of transparency. In television news, local stations are still teasing stories. This is an insane practice when I as a viewer can google the answer immediately and then bypass the news completely. A better strategy may be to tease the fact that you have resources and ways to investigate the story that they audience may not know.

When choosing story ideas, let the audience know why that story was selected and why others were not. Put some of the stories you don’t chooose to cover at large, on the Intenet. I made some of these suggestions, years ago and many others have said the same.

The media as well as the faculty at America’s colleges and universities are now facilitators. We need to give people ideas about what to think about and then where they can gain more in-depth information and insight.

The fundamentals have not changed. Good journalism is good journalism. However, much of what is being produced today isn’t journalism, it’s sensationalism, think Pulitzer versus Hearst. If traditional media will continue to produce compelling, well thought out pieces, the audience will consume it and pursue a deeper understanding.

It’s funny, when you can see clearly, you take a lot of things for granted. When your vision is suddenly and unexpectedly blurred for a prolonged period of time ( I still can’t see clearly as I type this entry) you are forced to adapt. Embrace the change. More on the Audience 20/20 Manifesto to come.

ONA '08 Ends

Posted in Change, New Media, ONA '08 on September 14th, 2008 by sybril – Be the first to comment

Well, the ONA ’08 conference has officially ended. Now, the real work continues. What new strategies should one implement? My suggestion is always to try one thing and store the other ideas for later use. I have already joined which I blogged about in my live blogging session on Robert Scoble. I also took the time to update my linkedin profile. So many people get overwhelmed by the very thought of new media technology and tools. This is no longer acceptable. I know I have to read more, play more and really get more adept with new media tools. At least, that’s what I encourage others to do.

I have to review my notes, touch base with some friends to get their notes, get some new software, figure out how to help my students get comfortable with some of these concepts and keep on moving because standing still is NOT an option.

Below is one more thing I decided to at least look at this morning. It’s a website that allows you to compare concepts and then embed the chart code on your site. It’s TwistFlaptor.