Day three of (unofficial) Yorkshire Social Media Week

Sheffield Social Media Surgery - 3rd Feb 10

It’s Wednesday, so it must be Sheffield! (sorry United fans). The third Social Media Surgery on consecutive days in Yorkshire took place tonight in the Showroom Cinema, Sheffield. Another well-attended event, with lots of positive conversations. The fact that the Surgery was organised, by the indefatigable Jag Gill to run immediately before one of the regular Sheffield Geekup events meant that there was a very good turnout of surgeons, and there we plenty of willing patients, despite the heavy snow which fell outside throughout the Surgery.

Sheffield station in the snow

Shortly, I hope to be able to reflect on the three Yorkshire Surgeries that have happened this week, but in the interim I will simply bask in the cumulative positive glow they produce, and look forward to the York Social Media Surgery, which is scheduled for 1st March.

Day Two of (unofficial) Yorkshire Social Media Week

Leeds Social Media Surgery 2nd Feb 10

Just back from Leeds Social Media Surgery, the second of three Yorkshire Social Media Surgeries this week. It was quieter than Huddersfield on Monday, but the snow and ice may have been a factor.

Nevertheless, as usual at Social Media Surgeries, the conversations were uplifting and inspiring. I feel privileged to be experiencing these feelings on a regular basis.

Leeds Social Media Surgery 2nd Feb 10

We have plans to increase attendance at Leeds SMS, by gaining access to offline channels which have been denied us to date. Watch this space for news.

And so, it is on to Sheffield on Wednesday for the third consecutive Yorkshire surgery.

Day One of (unofficial) Yorkshire Social Media Week

Huddersfield Social Media Surgery - 1st Feb 10

Huddersfield Social Media Surgery - 1st Feb 10

First of three social media surgeries on consecutive days in Yorkshire took place in Huddersfield last night. It was the second such event in the town, and the organisers were rewarded with a very good turn out. In fact, when I arrived at the Media Centre, a few minutes after the planned start time of 4:30pm, there was a queue of people waiting to see surgeons.

Huddersfield Social Media Surgery - 1st Feb 10

It was another excellent night, lots of positive feedback, lots of happy surgeons, and the added bonus from my point of view was that it was walking distance from my house.

Congratulations to Steven Tuck, Diane Sims, and Mari Browne who have been instrumental in getting the local Surgeries off the ground. I am sure that their hard work will result in these events being a permanent part of the scene for a long while to come.

The next Huddersfield Social Media Surgery will be on Monday 15th March.

Surgeons De-brief after Social Media Surgery

Surgeons De-brief after Social Media Surgery

Now it’s on to Leeds for day two of Social Media Surgery week.

What are Social Media Surgeries For?

First Huddersfield Social Media Surgery

This is a quick post in response to a conversation on Twitter this morning.

I’m responding to some criticism of the Social Media Surgeries we’ve been running in Yorkshire & the Humber, inspired by the Birmingham Social Media Surgeries.

I know the criticism is mild, but there is a couple of points I want to take up. These are:

  • that the Surgeries are not inclusive; and
  • that we are seeking to prescribe solutions.
  • On the first point, I would say that the Surgeries we are doing at the moment don’t set out to be all inclusive. They are about a small group of volunteers, who know things about social media, giving up their time to pass on their skills to people who work with communities. This is all still very small scale, they cannot be wholly inclusive, resources don’t allow. But, we won’t turn anyone away, and we will make every effort to ensure that those who want to attend are able to do so.

    The aim is that Surgeries will have a cascade effect, that those who come and gain some new skills will pass those on to the people they work with. At the moment, we are running Surgeries in central locations, and they are necessarily targeted at people who work in voluntary and community organisations, not to the general public. I would argue that it would be counter-productive to attempt to target the public, because people would not get the support they needed to maintain their use of social media. Birmingham started with centrally-located Surgeries along the model we are following, and have now, gradually, started to move out into neighbourhood surgeries which are much better placed to reach into grassroots communities. I very much hope that the surgeries we are stimulating in Yorkshire & the Humber will follow this model.

    Secondly to the accusation that we are prescribing solutions. I think we have to own up to being guilty on this score to a certain extent, because Social Media Surgeries are about exploring the potential of Web 2.0. But, if you don’t think Web 2.0 has anything to offer you, then don’t come to an event which is focussed on it!

    I have a particular approach to being a “surgeon” at a Social Media Surgery, which I would hope is shared by most other “surgeons”. I will not talk to you about particular social media tools until I fully understand what it is you are trying to say, and who it is you are trying to reach. Then we can start to explore what tools might achieve your objectives. Social Media Surgeries must not be about “surgeons” showing off their technical knowledge, that is a sure route to putting people off and prescriptive solutions which might not fit the message.

    First York Social Media Surgery

    Social Media Surgeries are gaining momentum around Yorkshire. Last night (9/12/09) saw the first SMS in York.There was a great turnout and some fantastic feedback from people who came to learn how blogs, wikis, Twitter, Facebook, etc might help the work of their community organisation. A big thank you to York Council for Voluntary Services for providing the venue and coffee, and to Ama Butler, for the cup cakes which were very popular indeed.

    Much of the event’s success was down to the energy and organisational skills of Abhay Adhikari and Christine Morris. Thanks to the other surgeons, Tom Smith, Rick Waghorn (who came all the way from Norwich), Helen Harrop, Mike Leigh-Cooper, Jonic Linley, Jonathan Irvine, Sophie Ballinger, and Dan Croxen-John (I hope I haven’t missed anyone).

    more about "First York Social Media Surgery", posted with vodpod