These days, I use social media a lot, and help people to start or develop their use of social media and other Web 2.0 tools, including blogs.
I have been one of the early adopters of digital technology in cultural heritage, especially to manage information. The digital side of my heritage work has included:
- managing the digitisation of historical images;
- designing the structure of databases and websites;
- being involved with working out national heritage data and digitisation standards;
- creating hierarchical, structured vocabulary resources (commonly referred to as a thesaurus);
- online educational resources;
- developing ways of using Web 2.0 tools to work with remotely-based staff and volunteers;
- reviewing cultural heritage websites and making recommendations on how to improve the user experience.
Using the experience I gained through working to encourage colleagues and volunteers to write and use web content management systems, I set up the Weekly Blog Club blog and Twitter feed in January 2012. We aim to encourage people (especially those working in or with the public or Third sectors) to blog and gain confidence in blogging.
Last year, I set up a temporary website and associated social media accounts for a local community group, and look after those. I’ve also been a volunteer at the social media surgery in Newcastle upon Tyne, which provides social media advice to charities and voluntary organisations.
Conferences, unconferences and hack days
I keep in touch with digital technology, how it is used and how it might be used in the future in the public sector and not-for-profit organisations, by attending unconferences and hack days.
In 2012, I thoroughly enjoyed the CultureCode events in the North East, and the opportunity to do a presentation at the CultureCode Hack. Being invited to blog and take photos at DIBI 2012 (Design It Build It conference) was great fun too.
Early in 2012, I was lucky enough to be in the winning team for Benefits Camp, organised by FutureGov, and which I attended remotely (via Skype). The team that I was in at the CityCamp London hack day, organised by FutureGov in 2010, was also one of the four winners that day.
What can I do?
- analyse needs and advise on appropriate website and social media tools;
- set up and customise blogs, promotional pages (on services such as About.me), social media accounts such as Twitter, and small websites;
- train people on the basics of how to maintain and add content to social media accounts and small websites;
- train people in how to write for the Web;
- advise on digital strategy and planning, including social media content strategy;
- advise on cultural heritage digital projects;
- plan new cultural heritage digital projects;
- write blog posts and content for websites.
My interests include:
- broadening access to information and communication via the Internet
- images (including databases and retrieval)
- the use of Web 2.0 tools (especially social media) in public and 3rd sectors
- heritage data standards
- controlled vocabularies
- helping initiatives to encourage women and young people into technology