It’s the time of year for lists! I know you’ll be disappointed if you don’t get one.
So here are 5 moments that made social media worthwhile for me in 2010. Either that or they just had my jaw dropping. Enjoy!
- My mate Jane Garvey joins Twitter and secures 2,000 followers in a matter of days. I like this one for a number of reasons. Firstly because it’s great to have one of my wittiest friends out there brightening my day with her observations about the follies of everyday life. Her Woman’s Hour newsletter is consistently funny and clever - I wrote about it here in A blog by any other name But her Twitter debut also reveals how different it is out there if you are even remotely well-known. Not for her the lonely hours of radio silence when nobody responds to your so-called ’crowd sourcing’ questionnaire. People are fascinated by a celebrity’s every move and this radio presenter gets Re-Tweets for asking a server to say please in a sandwich shop. But you also realise how circumspect you have to be if you are in the public eye or represent a brand e.g. the BBC. There is so much you want to say that you just can’t risk – so no tweeting on girls’ night out, no dissing the children’s teachers and no bad-mouthing celebrities – you never know when you might be asked to interview them.
- The discovery of David Meerman Scott. David blogs at Web Ink Now and is a renowned social media expert in the States. I have followed such ‘gurus’ ever since I took up social media but David was something else again, namely someone who said everything I wanted to say but hadn’t got around to thinking out for myself! Reading his book Real Time Marketing and PR was a joy for me because I agreed with everything he said (which is rare.) The emphasis on real-time and having a 24 hour newsroom mindset is something I have returned to again and again and I hope he will continue to inspire me in 2011 – plus he is a really nice guy and made personal contact when he saw that I had written about his work,so thanks David!Please do read his book or indeed any of the others he’s penned.
- The spat at Men with Pens left me open-mouthed. We’ve all heard about flaming and trolls and other nasties associated with blogging but I had never come across it before until I stumbled upon this almighty row at one of my favourite blogs. It blew up after James Chartrand, the chatelaine of M with P’s, called out an anonymous writer for using a personal tragic tale to pull on the heart-strings in a sales letter. I really don’t want to go into the detail but it blew up out of all proportion and the row spread across the internet like flames through stubble. The whole thing left me feeling rather sad and disillusioned – like a kid watching their favourite grown-ups pissed and brawling. (ooh—-I grew up that day!!!!) The big lesson here is that it is almost impossible to have a civilised discussion where tone of voice is so hard to detect and if you can’t see the pain in their eyes don’t say the mean things.
- I really enjoyed getting involved in a lively discussion about Bloggers and PR. In my post Should PR Leave Bloggers alone? I came close to suggesting that PR had jumped on the wrong bandwagon. I was suspicious about the motives of some PRs and felt that bloggers were being treated as dupes. However I soon came to realise that a lot of bloggers – mummy bloggers in particular - are sharp, switched on media women with journalism or PR backgrounds and they really can take care of themselves!
- This was the year a friend of mine over at Making People Happy With Cake penned THE funniest story – entitled Kebab Anyone? When I had finished laughing I shared the link along with - I am guessing - several of her other readers. As a result, within days the story had been on Radio 4 twice and was being repeated at dinner parties as far away as France. It just goes to show that good material WILL be shared even if the person doing the re-telling sometimes takes the liberty of saying it happend to them. Just ask another friend of mine who spotted some great time-lapse video of the New York blizzards on Twitter yesterday which ended up on the main TV news. Who is going to get the credit for that?
So there you are – my top 5 Social media moments of the past year – what were yours?