Tech & The District » Social networks Tech the way we see it: insights and musings on technology PR, policy and the District, from H&K’s D.C. Tech Team. Thu, 04 Aug 2011 15:06:44 +0000 en hourly 1 Social Media Breakfast.. Nom Nom Mon, 12 Apr 2010 22:40:52 +0000 Lauren Wilson

This morning I attended the monthly breakfast series for Social Media Club DC at Bus Boys and Poets. On the panel was Jill Foster, founding editor of Women Grow Business and co-founder of DC Media Makers; Yong Lee, consultant for the Social Media Club Education Connection (SMEC) and Frank Gruber, co-founder of TECH cocktail and co-producer of Digital Capital Week. At this session we of course covered the basics: Twitter as a powerful medium to connect people and how to convince unlikely settings to adapt to social networks.

What I particularly found interesting and new was Yong Lee’s discussion on using social media in higher education as a form of learning. Social Media Club Education Connection is working with various institutions to create higher education curriculums based on the growing changes in this field. SMEC is a national initiative with the goal of uniting educators, students, and professionals to further the development of social media curriculum in schools and prepare students for the workforce. I learned that Edmodo is a new tool that serves as your “Twitter” for the classroom. It was interesting to hear where these social networks were actually trying to expand.

There are several companies that are working to bridge mobile technology and social networks for learning. Qualcomm, a leader in mobile technology, is one company that is working to position smartphones as a significant learning device for the classroom through its Wireless Reach program. Through Wireless Reach, Qualcomm launched Project K-Nect, a two-year pilot program that works to improve math skills among at-risk ninth-grade students in North Carolina using advanced wireless technology. Project K-nect resulted in the enhanced learning and comprehension of these students in the classroom. Maybe one day teachers will be convinced that many social media tools serve as resources and forms of learning rather than distractions.

I look forward to the next event!

Disclosure: Qualcomm is a Hill & Knowlton client.

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Current wireless industry = PC Biz in its infancy? I think so. Fri, 26 Jun 2009 22:08:14 +0000 Sandra Rodriguez On June 25th, I attended the afternoon sessions at the Digital Media Conference  held in Tyson’s Corner, VA.  Sometimes these types of events are full of sales people, and while there were some, in general it was an interesting mix of speakers and attendees. Given my work here at H&K, I was definitely looking forward to the mobile apps panel, and I ended up hearing from AOL on mobile platforms, which was unexpected.


Ted Cahall, President of AOL’s Product & Technologies led the lunch keynote, where he set the stage for mobile content and media as the focus of the afternoon.  He noted that currently there are too many hands in the cookie jar of mobile applications and platforms. Carriers, developers, device manufacturers and wireless enablers are all creating competing platforms, however eventually there will be a PC – Mac battle, which is already brewing. Currently the iPhone is in the position of the Mac; however, we’re still waiting to see who will be the PC in the mobile world? Panelist Daniel Odio of stated that Google’s Android platform will eventually take that position. Android’s volume will increase in comparison to the iPhone platform, as Android will be available through various devices and carriers. However, from the four panelists only AP Digital and rmbrME said they had or were working on Android versions of their apps. In addition, all of the panelists agreed that the iPhone’s platform and ecosystem are the most evolved and easiest to work with. I hope RIM’s listening because it didn’t seem to be the most favored platform!


 In the mobile marketing session, Kevin Bertram, CEO of Distributive Networks ; the creator of the Obama text messaging campaign was on the panel. The best take away from the panel was that in order to be successful, mobile marketing campaigns must have call for action to the user and link to traditional media.  Speaking of traditional media I also attended the session titled “Is the Newspaper Dead?” To sum it up, it sure isn’t the same as it used to be. However the panelists all agreed that in order to succeed its print and online sites must not be mirror images, including the ads, online ads must be interactive. In addition, newspapers must focus on what they do best, and add value to its audience. It’s no longer about the product, but the audience, online and print audiences differ. The baby boomers still enjoy opening up the newspaper that landed on their porch and drinking a cup of coffee, however the younger generations are reading the news via a mobile device or online. Publications must cater to both audiences separately to succeed.


Right now the mobile industry is constantly changing, but we all can say that it’s all about the apps and what your device can do for you. The iPhone is sleek and sexy, but it has many other devices nipping at its ankles with the same features. It’s about the experience and what’s inside the phone. Think about it, when’s the last time you saw a commercial about making a phone call?

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Staggering Uptake in Digital Media Starts with Mobile Social Networking Fri, 26 Jun 2009 19:35:26 +0000 Andrew Cuneo Attended the Potomac Tech Wire’s Digital Media Conference on June 25 and the show didn’t disappoint.  The opening panel excited me the most as predicted numbers around digital TV (DTV) and the uptake in social networks at a mobile level were soaring higher than I, or many others, expected.

During the first panel, in which three analysts were asked to give their top five trends on where they see digital going, CEA analyst Ben Arnold indicated his association has seen a tremendous interest in DTV, much as we’ve seen HDTV take off in recent months. In particular, watching TV from your computer of mobile device is going to be huge among adults.  According to Arnold, 44 percent of adults have already expressed an interest in Net-enabled TV such as Hulu or YouTube. Smartbrief has already posted their piece.

Further, Arnold alluded to the enormous uptake in mobile social media. Over the course of 2008, mobile social networks grew more than 280 percent according to Arnold’s findings – making me feel comfortable knowing I am not alone!

Fellow panelist Michael Zaneis, of the International Bureau of Advertising, seemed to follow the same pattern noting that social media sites, even at a mobile level, are great generators for online advertising.  During our current economic recession, Michael noted that ad spending is the ONLY growing online sector at the moment.

Finally Jay Baage of Digital Media Wire wrapped up the opening stanza with some numbers that had even the most well informed digital media folks surprised. He listed the top 20 social media sites available today, and showed the dramatic mobile uptake in all of them. The most impressive was that of Twitter which was of no real surprise. What was surprising however was the percentage uptake in the site. Twitter users had increased, since the beginning of 2009, by over 2600 percent. Not a typo! Further, despite the incredible push by the iPhone, Jay predicted a surge in mobile widgets and a slow decline of iPhone users.

The conference was heavily attended as over 500 attended the show. It did leave me asking this question: What do you use your mobile device for?

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