Yesterday my mate brought to my attention SYDNEYS FIRST EVAR TWEETUP! #THEMEET140! And those awesome folk at B&T are bringing it to us! Sydney is FINALLY joining the 21st Century and becoming social media aware thanks to the brilliant folks at sites like this!!!
Well, except for one ever so slight problem. It’s actually not Sydney’s first tweetup. They’ve actually been going on since 2007 for actual “tweetup”s under the guise of #STUB, #SHTBOX and #SYDRIBS (possibly more), and even longer for coffee tweetups (#coffeemornings). Oops.
Jon Holloway has been copping a fair bit of flack about this on twitter under the #themeet140 tag as well as in the comments in his articles. This post too was originally going to be along those lines, but as I started composing this post in my head it quickly changed to be a post in defence of him. You see, I’m actually not all that surprised he couldn’t find information on the existing ones.
Lets run a little experiment, shall we? Lets pretend I’m not familiar with the terms used for Sydney tweetups (as I wasn’t about 1.5 years ago – first learnt about the Sydney ones through the Brisbane #BTUB crew). Where do we start? Well, it’s social media so lets send out a tweet.
2 hours later, still no response. Ok, so social media failed me, what about old media? Ahh, a google search seems to have a few hits. Lets check the first three sites!
Only three sites, but remember most people don’t click even that many links. The rest of the results I received were less relevant anyway.
THAT right there is my problem with tweetups and social media “events”. Unless you’re already in the right circles and know all the details, they’re near impossible to find out about.
There’s very rarely a website with simple details for them for regular events (where if it’s at a regular venue, when if it’s at a regular day/week of month, who to contact if you have queries). It’s something you’d think would be quite simple, and with all the “Social Media Experts” in attendance you’d think at least one of them would have a little knowhow to boost the google rankings while they’re at it, set up a generic central account, watch the networks for queries and questions. After all, without social media aren’t you supposedly invisible?
Instead, despite being 100% social media, they are the ones almost invisible. If you don’t already know all the details you feel outcast. It’s somewhat intimidating to come in and request details. It’s like seeing a bunch of people laughing about an in-joke and having to quietly say “Uhm, excuse me kind sir/ma’am, could someone please explain this to me?”.
My conclusion in all of this? Don’t be too quick to scoff. Sure I would agree with you if you were to say “without social media you’re invisible”, it really is a great tool to utilise and you’d be quite silly not to. I would however also have to add “with only social media you’re invisible”. Traditional media still has its place, please don’t forget it.
While we’re at it, does anyone care to take a look at this and tell me when/where the next #shtbox is? I’m struggling to filter out the noise and actually find the details. Chances are I’ll probably only track it down an hour or two after the fact (as I normally do), once it’s too late to motivate myself to shower/travel.
Oh, and by the way, come join us James Squires Brewhouse (Darling Harbour, Sydney) on Wednesday the 19th of October 2011. Just down the road from Bungalow 8.