Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Quick Hits: Projects, Workshops, Tools, and a Job

There's a lot of great stuff flooding my inbox these days. Here's what I'm most excited about right now. Keep 'em coming, and enjoy!

Museum Projects
  • COSI has done a lovely job aggregating all of their social media efforts into one "Share" tab on their website. Not only do they tell you where you can connect with them in Web 2.0-land, they explain what the different Web services do, which makes the invitation to connect less threatening for visitors who (like many of us) aren't really sure what Twitter is.
  • The Brooklyn Museum is offering a new "socially networked" membership called 1stfans starting Jan 3. This $20 membership is organized around the First Friday live events and a private feed on Twitter. This is the first attempt to monetize the value of being part of an affinity group that spans online and onsite experiences, and it's a step in the direction of reconceiving museum membership as being a part of something rather than just receiving discounts and services.
  • LACMA has recently opened their grounds to two pretty unusual art groups, Machine Project and The Public School. Machine Project is a gallery/educational program space with a focus on blending art and technology in craft workshops. The Public School is also a gallery/educational program space, but they are organized around a semi-democratic process where all programs are proposed, voted on, and led by community members. Kudos to LACMA for being a "big tent" willing to let weirdos do art and hold their own discussion groups in and around the Art.
Tools (well, one tool)
  • Do you want to provide a Twitter-like feed of what people are thinking in your galleries or programs without forcing people to go through confusing registration processes? Check out TodaysMeet, a really simple system that allows you to create a backchannel chat room for events, exhibits, etc. with no registration required. I used it last night for backchannel chat during a lecture on gaming in museums with a group of about 20 students, and I was impressed by how easy it was for everyone to use. Let me know if you end up using it for a museum event or exhibit!
Workshops and Conferences (coming in February)
  • The WeAreMedia team, led by Beth Kanter, is finally taking their knowledge on the road. Feb. 12-13 they are offering a Social Media and Non-profit Two Day Intensive Workshop in San Francisco, and I'll be helping teach. It's $199 for NTEN members, $299 for non-members, and they require you to come in two-person teams from your institution. This is a highly interactive workshop that will be useful if you are ready to craft a social media strategy and want a professional jump start.
  • WebWise is a free(!) conference for museum and library professionals in D.C. Feb. 25-27 sponsored by IMLS, the Wolfsonian, the MacArthur Foundation, and the Florida Center for Library Automation. I've never attended before, but I'm helping out with the program this year and it's shaping into a good high-level exploration of the hot issues around community engagement, legal rights and restrictions, and strategies for managing innovation. The theme is "Digital Debates" and we are structuring the sessions to encourage panelist discussion rather than show-and-tell.
Job Opportunity
  • The Scratch team at the MIT Media Lab is looking for an online community coordinator. I think their project and team are great, and this could be a wonderful opportunity for some web-savvy, education-loving, somewhat geeky person who wants to play with the cool kids in Cambridge, MA. Warning: I lived there. It's cold.

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