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    « Nowhere to hide from technology | Main | HR Happy Hour - Episode 7 - Tattooed HR Pros Unite! »

    Does Social Media influence your participation?

    I read an interesting article that theorized that many academic journals and paid subscription based publications are under increasing pressure due to their 'closed' nature.

    The basic premise was that since articles in many of these publications can't be linked to, blogged about, tweeted, and otherwise publicly shared that many authors will begin to seek alternate mediums for Flickr - Tochispublication.

    It makes sense; if you are really interested in building your personal brand, and enhancing your credentials to the widest possible audience, should you write for academic journals that only a very few choose to pay for, and whose content can't be widely distributed? Or would you choose to blog, conduct webinars, or produce e-books that can achieve much wider distribution.

    The same argument could be made for academic and professional conferences.  Would you be less willing to attend or speak at a conference or event if you thought no one would be live blogging, tweeting, streaming and otherwise promoting your appearance?  Is it enough just to reach the 50 or 100 folks in the room that day? Or does your session have to be streamed, tweeted, and blogged for maximum exposure?

    I am interested in knowing - how does social media coverage affect what events you attend and where you distribute your content?


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    Reader Comments (6)

    Working in higher education, I see the value placed on professional conferences and continuing education. I am still surprised a the number of faculty who travel internationally to conferences to present research and scholarship and to learn from others.

    I can't for the life of me figure out why these conferences aren't streamed live- even our technology providers don't allow or support this. I realize that the value is having people in person and you lose the personal networking and connection but ... you can't get to every conference. And in this cost conscious economy, if the goal is truly sharing information (not turning a profit) why not stream, tweet and blog?

    I think our current methods haven't quite caught up with the new methods. :)

    August 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDeirdre

    I have to agree with you Dee, particularly in the higher education space. The last big academic conference I attended had no streaming, no live blogging that I could discover, and almost no live or otherwise Tweeting. And while I think all of those things are really important for the continued sharing of information, I can't help but wonder if at least some of these activities in the long run will detract from attendance and participation. It is interesting what will happen once some larger, well known events decide to stream every session (maybe they never will). Thanks for your comments as always!

    August 16, 2009 | Registered CommenterSteve

    Social media coverage does not affect my decison at all; my interest is in conference topics, who the speakers are, and what I will learn.

    I go to fewer conferences than I used to when I worked in higher education. The best one I ever attended was two years ago, http://www.2017.uwaterloo.ca/keynote.htm. You may be interested to hear that I went because of a weak connection (linking to Granovetter). Someone I knew on Facebook, before I left FB, said in his status update that Malcolm Gladwell would be at the conference. That was just a few days before it was due to start. So I registered, got a plane ticket, booked a hotel and I was off!

    Gladwell was the least of it. Jim Balsillie was rivetting, I thought. Richard Florida was spell-binding. As was Dr Frances Westley, Roger Martin and Dan Pink. Many of the sessions were recorded and are now available on the website but that is not why I went. I went to hear some extraordinary thinkers speak.

    One more thought about academic journals. As a Visiting Fellow at a UK university, I have acces to them - I rarely do. There is so much freely available, quality research on the web and published research takes so long to appear. I seek other sources because they are immediate and because they are collectively debated, critiqued and commented on.

    August 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnne Marie McEwan

    So many angles to this one, I think. The fact that many articles are "closed" to the general public goes back to the scarcity mentality that if it is hard to get it is worth more. Being closed they can charge for the articles or a membership and make money. It's a commercial decision.

    To make things more open will create a broader market and a wider audience but how does this make the author/owner feel? Possibly just one of the masses (ugh! :) )

    I remember reading an article abut an exclusive education conference where only 40 were invited. All of a sudden people in that audience started twittering and raising questions to the panel based on the tweets. Some thought it was fantastic as the "audience" grew to over 200. But some were offended because the "outsiders" hadn't been "invited".

    Should we use technology better? Absolutely! But there will always be people who want to keep knowledge exclusive.

    August 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBill Wallace

    Anne Marie - Thanks for sharing your story. I was actually thinking more about presenters and less about attendees when I was originally writing the post. Perhaps that did not come across as well as it could have. But I have to agree with you on the academic journals, it seems like many of them have such a limited audience and archaic distribution, that I wonder how many of them will survive. Thanks so much for reading and for sharing your thoughts.

    Bill - Very interesting points, especially about the 'exclusivity of knowledge'. It reminds me of some of the ideas of how in the new world giving content and knowledge away is the surest path to sustainable long-term success. Knowledge wants to be free, no? Thanks very much for sharing.

    August 16, 2009 | Registered CommenterSteve

    Hello. Great job. I did not expect this on a Wednesday. This is a great story. Thanks! Best regard masters thesis

    July 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterExclusive Essays

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