Tag Archives: media

The emperor has lost his clothes

I’ve taken a particular interest in the current media scandal taking place in UK, not so much for the hideous activity of phone hacking (which is heinous) but rather in the fall-out that is now taking place.

Regardless of your preferred news outlet, the rabbit’s hat goes deep on this one. It reminds me of a conversation I had a few years ago with a Zimbabweian friend of mine.

Jo was particularly fascinated with how England was not overtly corrupt, and was trying to figure out how the social circles operate (that’s not a Google+ reference). She felt there was a level of snobbery and closed ranking regarding the flow of information – she was right! I’ve heard the same thing from other foreign nationals looking to understand British culture.

I had explained the “old boy” network and that in high society it’s all about following the money that flows initiated through back room deals. It’s not even hidden really, it’s more a case of “the social silence” as Gillian Tett states.

Of course the average Mr Smith living in blissful ignorance soaking up the red top daily tabloids is typically unaware of how the upper echelons operate in schmoozing for a piece of the various big deals. There has also been a lack of awareness with the extent of how our political system has been affected.

It is indeed the case that even our political system has been entrenched, and at the perils of the press editors, the media moguls for years.

So I’m following this with great interest, it really is one of those major moments in British history.

Kingston Technology 32 GB USB 2.0 DataTraveler SE9H Flash Drive with Metal Casing
by Kingston Platform:  Kingston Technology 32 GB USB 2.0 DataTraveler SE9H Flash Drive with Metal Casing Windows 7 / 8 / Vista Business / Vista Enterprise / Vista Home Basic / Vista Home Premium / Vista Ultimate / XP Home Edition / XP Professional, Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard, Mac OS X 10.7 Lion, Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion Kingston Technology 32 GB USB 2.0 DataTraveler SE9H Flash Drive with Metal Casing(2051) Buy new: £25.49 £11.61 72 used & new from £9.79
HP Deskjet 2540 All-In-One Printer
by HP HP Deskjet 2540 All-In-One Printer(328) Buy new: £42.00 £35.00 30 used & new from £18.97
Samsung M3 1TB USB 3.0 Slimline Portable Hard Drive - Black
by Samsung Platform:  Samsung M3 1TB USB 3.0 Slimline Portable Hard Drive - Black Windows 7 / Vista Business / Vista Home Basic / Vista Home Premium / Vista Ultimate / XP Home Edition / XP Professional Samsung M3 1TB USB 3.0 Slimline Portable Hard Drive - Black(3651) Buy new: £79.99 £43.99 61 used & new from £42.99
Netgear WN3000RP Universal Wi-Fi Range Extender
by NetGear Netgear WN3000RP Universal Wi-Fi Range Extender(1490) Buy new: £70.58 £29.98 34 used & new from £25.00

Why Twitter Auto-DMs Suck

twitter auto dms

Click here for the large version

I suppose some might say, “switch the emails off”, but then again usually I enjoy getting DM from friends, but now and then you do something and you attract a heap of new followers, which I am grateful for of course, but still, what a way to start your day, eh?

We could get into a debate about auto-dms merits, I mean do you auto-pilot your account?


So we have just under two-weeks left until MediaCampBucks08, I’m getting excited about it all now.

A quick mail then to mention a few things:

This is the second camp we’ve run at this venue and many of you will know the routine, same building, same kind of format, same places to eat on the day. All pretty straightforward and simple, nothing complex, heaps of wi-fi, tons of rooms, coolio bananio people.


Things You Can Do:

I’m a great believer in reaching-out to people who are NOT in the know, people who are not swimming in the same small pond as us, people who are not early adopters, and people who probably have never heard of the term social media, or new media, have no idea what a Blog is, have no concept of Web 2.0. These are the people that will benefit most from MediaCamp, not the existing practitioners.

SO, with that in mind, I encourage you to post a Blog about the event asap, send emails to your groups of friends, encourage people to take a look and think about coming. Bring people along who you think may benefit, like the local cafe, the B&B up the road, your CEO friend who needs to come up to speed on communications technology. Your friend at the local paper, the college PR rep, the school governor, you get the picture, talk to people.

Start Tagging:

Start mentioning the camp in your channels and tag it with: mediacampbucks08

Flickr Group:

MediaCampBucks08 Flickr

You can see a bunch of pics from last year’s event there, join the group and add further pics.

Audio/Video Promos:

If you fancy making a short audio promo I’ll play it on AC Radio this week and next week (include your own links), you can also upload them to the Wiki. Same thing applies for video, some of you are video people so how about making a short talking head video about the event and posting it and tagging it?

Here is a summary of last year by Nuno:

Any other ideas?

You are all creative people so now is the time to show-off a little and “reach-out” to those who need your help, don’t swim in the small pond with the same people, get out there with people who know nothing about this technology.

Virtual Attendance:

There seems to be some interest in virtual attendance, there is a page on the wiki. I’m more than happy for anyone to use my private island in SecondLife. should it be needed as a venue.


We have enough sponsorship to cover everyone with a t-shirt, cool eh? Eaon is banging away on sourcing the cloth. We should have a size for everyone. However, we can also do with more wonga, maybe the bar bill can be covered, maybe we can get some other goodies, sponsorship is always needed: sponsors

Live Music:

Mikey 12 Casts has organised a complete evening of live music in the student union, pretty coolio bananio that will be, 4 acts or so!

That’s about it for now, though be prepared for more communications in the coming days.

Trattoria Dopo Teatro

Tomorrow evening is the Social Media Mafia “sit down” dinner in NYC.

The event is taking place at the Trattoria Dopo Teatro at 7:30pm, tomorrow (April 24)

125 West 44th Street

Looking forward to seeing you for big eats and some drinks, and plenty of geekery.

Send me an SMS tomorrow if problems: +447824776785 send me one anyway :)

What Does Chris Hambly Do

Some of you already know some of this but not all of it, and some of you do not know this but may have had some clues, I have been excited at times and have been dropping hints. It’s time to “spill the beans” and share exactly what’s going on.

I received an unsolicited approach in the last quarter of 07 for a possible partnership/merger between my established distance learning portal Audiocourses.com and the global face-to-face educational provider SAE Institute.

After various negotiations we have now struck a deal and I have signed on the dotted the line, so to speak.

SAE was established in 1976 and now operates over 50 institutions in 21 countries around the globe. SAE has an exceptionally strong brand name in the field of sound engineering and music production, and also more recently, film making, games, and other media related disciplines. If you are a musician or budding sound engineer/studio technologist etc, this is unquestionably “the” brand, SAE is in fact also the world’s largest media education provider, fact.

Audiocourses.com is a pioneering distance learning portal working at the cutting-edge of educational technology since 2000. The portal has graduated students from most corners of the English speaking world, it is a specialist e-learning internet school, with vast experience and proven results. Considerable credibility has been established and the site is dominant in most areas of its core business.

Putting these two cultures together then and you can imagine the possibilities, exciting times ahead with enormous potentials.

Personally I am very excited by this deal, it is the coming of age of my company, something I started on the kitchen table and have shed pints of sweat over, uncountable sleepless nights and all the rest of that stuff you need to get your baby going. I’m chuffed!

So what will I be doing?

Primarily I will continue managing Audiocourses.com and with that comes the integration of the SAE Graduate College. I will also be engaged in helping restructure the SAE network of websites and market the online presence of the SAE brand worldwide.

These are huge projects requiring heaps of project management along with various milestones and launches and exciting strategies. Naturally I hope to share some of this with you as I work through it.

All of this will be carried out by my new-media web marketing consultancy company Audana, which some of you may recall carried out work for Crayon and Coca-Cola as well as other great clients through 07. Audana will grow steadily and aggressively extend its client base through 08.

Watch out for the official press releases soon.

Can’t wait to get stuck in, wish me luck!

Social Media Is Based On Mafia Mentality

As I see that title I am now wondering how I can now justify it, but let me give it a go.

Firstly, let’s rid your mind of the romanticised stereotypical view of the Mafia; so that means you have to forget about horses heads in beds and machine guns outside of illegal underground casinos. You also need to rid your mind of anything criminal in fact, for my argument to work. So forgot about baseball bats and Las Vegas sand and lime too.

No, what I am talking about here is a mentality that, and we’ve all experienced this first hand, of something bigger and better, something worth much more than money, where money may actually be the by-product of the system.

The system of favours

The movement (loosely organised, and part of Folksonomy) of social media works by providing services that people want, typically information, or a bloody Dig, or a comment here and there, or something much bigger such as brand loyalty! People naturally migrate to providers and connectors of information and when and IF profit is made it is born out of a good relationship of those services and word of mouth endorsements.

If I help you in some way we have started to build a relationship, I have provided for you, without charge, something you want or need. In return you also provide for me or someone else in the social media family. This generosity is what builds trust, it is the currency of the movement.

If you assume money is the driver in this, you do not get the point, money will taint and in fact cheapen the exchange, the relationship. As I said money is a by-product of the favours and money WILL come if you play the game and focus on the exchange and relationships.

As an experiment (well and a bit of fun) I have now started another Facebook Page, called the Social Media Mafia (*update). this is an invite only group (you are free to request entry), where the members will have to have a “sit down” to approve newbies. The Family also now has an associated Social Media Mafia Website which the members will “take care of” very soon.

I’m chuckling a lot here :))

So, do you understand what I am trying to connect? Please tell me your thoughts.

Update: 30.05.08 I changed the Facebook link to point to a Page rather than group.

Open Organisations

What is an open organisation and how can you achieve it?

You can take a variety of channels and mediums and become impressed to hear various voices bubbling with enthusiasm and knowledge for change. It is most impressive when these voices have an outlet, and channel for open dialogue.

Change is a good thing, change brings goodness and change brings challenges for everyone, not least the identity (or brand) of the organisation, in this connected world.

Large organisations the world over are struggling with traditional forms of advertising, it is no surprise to find the branding and marketing conversation rampant in the online world, where daily large institutions are having to employ, consult, embrace, the currency of trust, which is of course transparency.

Marketing is now a dialogue, marketing is now a conversation, the product has to be engaged with, with the client, there is now a NEED, an absolute requirement to have interaction with the prospects.

Web 2.0 is here to stay, and those who embrace it will win, those who ignore it will fall, without a shadow of doubt.

So what’s needed?

A few things…

1. SELL TO YOUR STAFF – senior management need to engage with their staff transparently, and lead the transparent and open dialogue, effectively leading by example and encouraging feeding (fuelling the conversation). Traditional management cascades are one way, very old school, the conversation stops, immediately!

2. ENCOURAGE STAFF TOO SELL FOR YOU – here this is where you actively support and promote the soldiers to champion and engage in representing the organisation in the online space.

3. TOOLS – you need tools in place which allow the above to take place, including, blogs, podcasts, videocasts, wikis, and not only.

4. COMMUNITY DEVELOPER – you need someone full-time working in and around the community (the staff), who not only brings people together with all of this technology, but more importantly documents, showcases, makes aware of all the wonderful activities going on and spreading that externally within the important spaces. You need this person popping in board meetings, nipping into lectures, filming activity and pumping it out on an organisational channel.

I have been community developing with my online businesses for some time and relish the environment of connecting people and extended the conversation, it’s empowering for all.

The point is how to move mountains, how to mobilise a community to act and engage with the product.

Now tell me what you are doing in YOUR organisation to promote change, are you just hoping it will happen, or are you actively pushing for change, is that difficult to accomplish, if so why?

Do You Fall For Buzz Words

I was again perusing my friends’ tweets on Twitter this fine Saturday morning and I became aware that a recent buzz word seems to be “Social Media Breakfast”. Social Media Breakfast I say, hmm … what does that mean to you?

I have an idea of the concept but I really want to know who coined the phrase, and why? Was it coined just randomly like “hey let’s have breakfast” by a few people who use social media, or was it more thought about than that?

Conceptually I don’t think it is actually anything new, the premise being that you have a friends list in one of your social networks and you create an event, a social event where you all meet-up, in this case eat breakfast, if like me you are not a big breakfast eater, or like the Italians, stand up and have an expresso on the run, these sessions might not work for you.

However, these remind me an awful lot of the activity we at Audiocourses.com have been practising since 2000. So have we been having Social Media Meet-Ups unwittingly? And have we just not applied a buzz phrase to them? I think so, let me explain.

Running a distance learning school has meant that I have had to build a strong sense of virtual community around the members and within its operating structure. As no bricks and mortar exists for the school (no point considering all students are geographically dispersed) it really is paramount to use scaffolding that supports a strong sense of virtual identity, the school really must give a sense of institution, a sense of community and a sense of something big, something to feel a part of.

Over the years I have utilised various technologies to accomplish this sense of community ranging from ftp upload centres to internet radio, forums, blogs, telephone, email, synchronous chat, text messages and various other bits and bobs. Again all these help cement an organisational concept and mostly all are social technologies, social media.

In addition to those technologies we have since 2000 held weekly online synchronous chats, typically on Sundays. We have termed these Live Workshops. As a distance learning educationalist it is vital I can aid students move away from feelings of social isolation. Think about it, when you go to a traditional University or College you see your friends every day, you meet them in the pub after study and you are generally learning in a very social manner (which is vital in my mind). So the distance learning student needs, actually I would say it is essential, to have mechanisms in place which are for the “social” aspect of learning, and this is exactly what are Live Workshops are.

You can browse through passed Workshops from 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, (I’ve kept the dialogue) and if you do indeed read through these you will soon get the vibe of what is going on. Social friendly sessions, inclusion and openness, community building, cementing attachment, installing belonging.

Now back to my original point.

So we have this large virtual community, we have people who have never met each other personally, from all over the world, only digitally through our social media channels, so if we then have real-life get togethers I guess you could say we are having a Social Media Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Pint, whatever.

This is exactly what has happened over the years, we’ve had breakfasts, we’ve had lunches and we’ve had dinners, and meeting these people for the first time in the flesh (having built a deep relationship already online) has been awesome, really, a fantastic experience. But will I attached the buzz word to it, no probably not, should I do that? Would you, would you raise your hand and say “hang on a minute guys we’ve done this for years already, what’s so new”?

I’d love to have your views on it, should I care about new buzz-words for old concepts?

UPDATE: Bryper is said to be the guy who coined the phrase see here, thanks to @mdy

New Media Course Design

I’m designing a New Media course module which will sit inside an under-graduate degree, at the final year stage, so typically analysis, dissemination, examination, reflection, future visions etc would be considered.

I envisage a heavy emphasis surrounding the future of content distribution, both in terms of the shifting cultures we will operate in and also the converging technology coupled with wider accessibility.

A friend of mine Sean McKay suggests the following pointers:

• theory: rss, rethinking content, relationships, story, and human interaction
• practical: tools for audio, vid, text, & images + mashing it all together
• ethics: issues of identity, integrity, character, and intellectual property/copyright… questions like, who are you, really?

Whilst this is a good basic list as a start point for discussion, how would YOU embellish it, what would YOU add to the list, or how would YOU expand it, what challenges are YOU facing right now, what is missing in your knowledge, what techniques or skills shortages are not in your current tool box?

If you had to consider “outcomes” what outcomes would you want, how would you personally find yourself better equipped to monetise your new media activities?

Need you on this.