Social Media Surgery Tour

Thanks to the lovely people at the RSA I am about to embark on a Social Media Surgeries tour, mainly of the North of England, but a couple that fall outside that definition.

If you’ve read my blog before, you’ll know what a Social Media Surgery is. If you haven’t then go away for a bit and read what the amazing Nick Booth, who really invented the Social Media Surgery, has to say about them. In essence, a Social Media Surgery is an informal session when nice people who understand how to use social media get together with people from voluntary & community and arts organisations to help them start out or improve their usage of free internet tools to communicate their messages and reach out to people they want to work with.

I’ve agreed with the RSA a list of places where we want to establish new Social Media Surgeries. This list is based on places where myself or RSA staff (or both) have contacts who we are fairly confident will take the Surgeries on, develop them, and make them a regular feature of the local infrastructure. There are nine venues on the list at the moment, and we are still looking for a tenth, so feel free to volunteer your area, if you think you can make it work. We are also open to persuasion to change the list if someone can make a compelling case for their area, but, this is where we are starting, and, if an area wants to join the list, somewhere else will have to drop out.

  • Blackburn
  • Darlington
  • Grimsby
  • Harrogate
  • Hull
  • Liverpool
  • Manchester (for community groups & RSA members)
  • Mansfield
  • Peterborough (not in the north of England)

The plans for nearly all the areas are not very well advanced as yet, so if you’ve got ideas for where and how we should do it in your area, please pitch in. In any case, we really need as many volunteer “surgeons” (advisers) as possible. Don’t worry if you’ve never done anything like this before, a key feature of Social Media Surgeries is that surgeons and “patients” often learn together, and we very often manage to ensure that two surgeons can work together so a more experience surgeon can help a new-comer out.

The important part about all this, is that these Surgeries need to be sustainable. I’ll probably only be able to help with setting up the first (and perhaps a second) event. Experience with the Surgeries that Nick has set up in Birmingham, and that I have worked on in Yorkshire, suggest that it needs at least one enthusiastic lead surgeon (and preferably a group) to take on the organising of the surgeries and coordinating surgeons diaries, venue etc in each area. I don’t want to raise expectations in areas and dash them by not being able to sustain an on-going regular event, so please bear that in mind when volunteering to pile in.

Well, if all that has not put you off, please comment below if you want to be involved in a Surgery in your area.

7 thoughts on “Social Media Surgery Tour

  1. Telford & Wrekin CVS will be looking to host a soc-med surgery soon. We are going out and about next week to view suitable venues – very excited at the prospect; not only great for the community but also be a big part of our BASIS Project too!

  2. Hi John

    I would be interested in helping out in the Peterborough Area time of day pending. Just a mention though. We have a DPiP (Digital People in Peterborough) who try to meet regularly on a monthly basis to discuss anything ‘digital’. Haven’t yet managed to get to one myself as they meet in a Pub, and not good for me for child care issues.

    DPiP can be found on twitter @DPiPboro or

    Finally, if you have one in Leicester(shire) may be able to join that at a later date (Sept onwards).

  3. Hi John,

    I am trying to improve the online presence and social networking of Peterborough Male Voice Choir and would welcome involvement in the surgery in Peterborough. I don’t do the website, as we have a designer in the choir for that. We have youtube, facebook, twitter, myspace and free listings for the choir on relevant musical event sites and we are currently promoting a big new project to raise money for Help for Heroes by forming a “Sing for Heroes” choir.

    I would like to learn how to improve what I am doing and any strategy that helps in managing multiple sites, what the best routes for online exposure are etc.

    You can access our website via, which links to some of our other online presences.

  4. Hi John, Nicky Getgood passed on your details, I would be interested in attending the Peterborough event, even though we are based in Lincolnshire Peterborough is ou nearest city.

  5. Hallo John

    I’d like to come along to the Darlington surgery to help build my knowledge. If I can help out with any future arrangements in the North East, keep me in mind.

    We have spoken on twitter (stevenwatson101) and also you helped us out with the Regional Youth Work Unit Annual Conference. Thanks for all your input and ideas, you have really planted a seed with the team at the Unit. We are Yammering, Tokboxing and exploring all sorts of exciting ideas.


  6. Pingback: Visiting UK online centres that are community hubs | Talk About Local

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.