I'm still in Las Vegas, this time at the New Communications Forum, sponsored by Regan Communications and the Society for New Communications Research. The Forum is a 2-day event of top-notch folks coming together to discuss and explore cutting edge new media technologies, like deep tagging for videos (you can tag a specific point in your video so the viewer doesn't have to watch the whole thing to get to the part that interests them), free video editing sites, free (and legal) music and video to download, corporate blogging, blog summits, etc. Very very interesting stuff.
The morning session (which I was on time for, thankyouverymuch) included a presentation by David Weinberger, co-author of the Cluetrain Manifesto, avid blogger, writer, NPR commentator, and senior Internet advisor to Howard Dean's 2004 president campaign. Even at 8AM, he was a fantastic speaker: Energetic, hilarious, and irreverent.
I came away from his presentation with a much greater respect for wikis. I was a bit suspicious of them at first: How do you know the entries are correct? Unbiased? Complete? I've started to uses sites like Wikipedia a bit more in my blogging, but I learned from Weinberger about the edits that you can track on Wikipedia, the discussion on why edits were made, and the flags/messages that are attached to some entries if they are a particularly polarizing topic, have a biased entry, or unverified information. What a fascinating record of humanity's thoughts and conversation these wikis will be!
This conference has really given me an even greater sense of the importance of new media and how important it is to (attempt) to stay on top of the latest technology. I feel especially privileged to work for a nonprofit (Fresh Energy) that has a real commitment to using new media. Specifically, I'm exploring regular news vodcasts, podcasts, and an internal "town hall" of media communications.
I'd love to hear from folks who have worked on social media strategies, internal blogs, vodcasts tips, etc. In particular, I've found quite a generational gap between folks who embrace and want to learn new media and the folks who don't see the use or don't want to spend any time on it. What sort of tools and trainings have folks developed to engage the more mature generation that are a bit wary of Web 2.0?
Photo credit: Stabilo Boss