Put 60 people in a room with beer and you’re bound to learn something…

posted by Brendan Hodgson

Another Third Tuesday is behind us and, like those before it, generated some interesting and healthy debate. And although intended to focus on “Shiny New Objects” (SNOs), last night’s discussion really did anything but – to the consternation of some, but not I think to others (myself included)… Key takeaways? In no particular order of importance, I felt they were as follows:

  1. It re-affirmed that while SNO’s are emerging every day, the reality is that the majority of our clients are only now taking their first steps into what might best be described as the “tried and true” – blogs, Youtube, Facebook etc. – for the most part because it is these tools that align best with their objectives, and where the most examples of success exist.
  2. It highlighted the challenge of co-organizing a meetup that attracts a broad cross-section of people who not only represent communicators experienced with social media, but also newcomers, designers, advertisers, developers, enthusiasts, those who work in the private sector, those who represent start-ups and not-for-profit, and those in government. Personally, I’m not sure we can continue to try to be all things to all people. At the same time, the networking is always fun.
  3. It hammered home that social media – within the context of my work (and that of many others) - must be viewed for what it is: an enabler of communication and interaction. More important still is the quality of the content delivered by that technology (be it a video, a blog post, a comment etc.) that makes that communication relevant, or simply turns it into “white noise”.
  4. It begged raised the question as to whether social media will ever be adopted in a significant way, within an enterprise context, so long as the application is in “permanent beta”?
  5. Not surprisingly (though I would certainly argue this fact), it demonstrated that social media in a corporate context remains, for many, an apparent contradiction (in their eyes) between the “motivations” that drives corporate behaviour and the social media ethos of transparency, engagement, and community.
  6. It clearly showcased the hunger among public servants to expand the use of social media more broadly within government, despite the apparent roadblocks (political and otherwise).
  7. It revealed Joe Thornley’s fascination with video – particularly when witnessing his attempt at getting those low-to-the-ground angles (double-chin, anyone)
  8. It gave as good as it got – and that’s something I think we don’t do enough of in this space. Glad to see we challenged each other.




Bob LeDrew

Hey Brendan:

Two things — first, grammar/debate geek Bob says that it didn’t "beg the question" — begging the question is when you make a proposition that uses itself to prove itself. It may have RAISED the question, but it didn’t beg it.

Second, you forgot the most important thing we learned — that you guys charge a hundred billion zillion dollars to build a simple Facebook app. ;-)



Brendan Hodgson

Hey Bob, damn your grammar-geeky eyes!! (alas, the risks of hammering out a post pre-coffee)

And with respect to the gazillion-dollar price tag comment of my co-presenter, he should know better – he knows who we use to develop our apps :-) .

More to the point, however, I’ve seen few instances where development costs should be prohibitive even for smaller companies – the real cost as I see it is in the upfront research and strategy (to determine if it even makes sense), and then ensuring they remain relevant and sustainable over time.  

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