Tag: BBC

Blogging for the BBC on hyperlocal websites.

This picture is of the BBC blog and links to it.

I’ve just started a blog for the BBC on hyperlocal websites.  It emerged from a meeting which Will Perrin organised between local Birmingham bloggers, the BBC’s Head of English Regions David Holdsworth and Laura Ellis – both of whom had been my bosses when I was at the Beeb.

We were discussing the best way for the BBC to connect with an understand the growing movement of very local, or hyperlocal, blogs.   I suggested at the time the BBC started blogging about these sites.  The why is pretty straightforward.

Something  I had learnt back in 2005 when I started the Grassroots Channel Podcast (which told the stories of active citizens in Birmingham) is how making media about people is a great way to establish relationships. Through interviewing people for a podcast two things happened, I established stronger relationships with them, but they also started connecting with each other.  The simple idea of understanding each other better and, to a degree, sharing a platform.

It was the case I was making last week at the new currency event.  Storytelling is about connecting people and we hope to help do that through this blog.  We will concentrate on the wider West Midlands region and the sort of blogs that interest me are outlined in the first post here. Besides taking an interest in the bloggers, what they write and why they do it, I’ll also be talking to a number of BBC newsrooms and production teams and introducing people.

I’m really looking forward to this.  I have a passion for both the BBC and for people who use various forms of social media for civic good.  I think they’re natural bedfellows.  We shall see.

Stuff I've seen February 13th through to February 14th

These are my links for February 13th through February 14th:

  • Local council elections in 2010 « LGiU – the local democracy blog – At the BBC I loved organising and doing election coverage. (Genuinely did) This post shows that while the Local Government Information unit was thinking there are 166 local councils holding elections on May 6th the researchers I used to rely on, Rallings and Thrasher reckon there are 176. This can't be a tricky single data source problem to crack!
  • Google Code Blog: Announcing Google Chart Tools
  • BBC – The Virtual Revolution Blog: BBC Digital Revolution rushes for you to download and edit – Argued for this in 1999 – great to see it happening. The most embarrassing bits of the rushes (un-edited video) are the ones when the producer reporter is making people do/say what they need them to do. That may well be the stuff left out! "Releasing rushes like this is an experiment, and there are some limitations. We're not releasing all our rushes, for two reasons. Firstly, we have a compliance procedure at the BBC which means that all online video has to be viewed by a senior manager – there's simply too much footage to do this properly. We do estimate that we will be releasing around 5 hours of interview material, featuring 20-30 interviewees, and up to an hour of other content."
  • Blogging and Facebook for councillors – Councillor Mary Reid offers you the benefit of her experience. She offers top tips on how councillors can make the most of blogs and social network media. (thanks to @pigsonthewing )
  • PC Ed Rogerson (hotelalpha9) on Twitter – This is one of my favourite bits of the web for the crossover between social media, very local stuff and public service: "Just had a meeting with my Sergeant. I've been instructed to conduct more speed checks in Starbeck and to seize tobacco off children."

Stuff I've seen December 20th through to January 7th

These are my links for December 20th through January 7th:

  • Doctor Who leads Welsh regeneration | UK news | The Guardian – The success of Doctor Who provided a platform to develop the skills and experience of local people within the industry and then attract further productions to the city [and] region," he said. "The diversity of the landscape is also a significant factor, with beaches and mountains within half an hour of a modern capital that has changed beyond recognition." So successful has Doctor Who been in blazing a drama trail that the BBC has outgrown the programme's dedicated studios in Pontypridd and is proposing to build a "drama village" in the country, possibly in Cardiff Bay.

    Cardiff is considered to be cheaper and more film-friendly than London and will fill in for the streets of the British capital on Sherlock Holmes, a modern take on the Arthur Conan Doyle classic, starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman, being made by Hartswood Films for BBC1.

  • NESTA Connect: Human Scale Organisations – Human Scale organisations are fundamentally different in that they:

    1. Tend towards sharing first and inventing second, to create mutual value;
    2. Are honest about the mistakes they’ve made and seek to rectify them quickly;
    3. Know their strengths and weaknesses and so actively seek complementary partners;
    4. Prioritise long term relationships over short term outcomes;
    5. Systematically focus on the macro and the micro.

    via @dominiccampbell

  • Summation: Outsourced thinking is today’s biggest problem – Strive to be wrong

    "To be true to yourself, you need to be wrong sometimes. You need to be ok with being wrong and you should be ok when others around you are wrong. That means going against the grain and speaking your mind, especially when it’s different from what those around you are thinking."

  • MadLab – Manchester Digital Laboratory – home of creative community technology in Manchester – The Madlab is a community space for people who want to do and make interesting stuff – a place for geeks, artists, designers, illustrators, hackers, tinkerers, innovators and idle dreamers; an autonomous R&D laboratory and a release valve for Manchester's creative communities.
  • The state of the UK gov blogosphere – Really good comment from Neil on Dave Brigg post about the problem of us not blogging enough good stuff. Like Steph, my own experience of blogging about my work within Whitehall over the last year and a bit has been that it is *really* difficult. Lack of time is the biggest barrier due both to having a young family and the day job spilling over into evenings and weekends. But this is closely followed by issues around permission and propriety. I’ve felt that I’ve had to restrict what I share and write about more, not less, as time has gone on.

    Which is a real pity – because writing about this stuff online gets me a lot of useful feedback, helps me make contacts which are useful to my employer, makes me reflect more deeply on the value of what I’m doing – ultimately helps motivate me to do the best I can. If it was easier, if I felt safer, if it were encouraged, I’d do it a lot more."

  • Hackitude gets down and dirty with data | Be Vocal

Stuff I've seen September 19th through to September 20th

These are my links for September 19th through September 20th:

  • BBC NEWS | Politics | Dyke in BBC ‘conspiracy’ claim – Greg Dyke was impatient for change when he was at the BBC – remember if you have a radical boss find a way to support them: "Our current model was designed for the 18th Century. It doesn't fit 21st Century Britain," he told the meeting. And he added: "We want more influence over our lives and we are not just prepared to hand it over to this strange bunch of people who stand for Parliament because they have been knocking on people's doors for 10 years." "
  • Online Database of Social Media Policies – This database contains 82 documents.
  • Sentiment analysis – analysis « Emma Mulqueeny – Emma: "it is the first step I have seen in digitally automating the mood of the nation on any given topic."
  • Sarah Lay on Twitter and Coseley Baths – Sarah was almost in tears: "This account is the voice of a swimming baths in the Black Country on which the local council has taken the decision to condemn it to closure and demolition."
  • Sarkozy’s blue-chip Commission recommends measuring social capital « Social Capital Blog – It's personal" "A formal organization with a name and address may not correspond to any actual individual members, much less to social networks among those members. Moreover, the role of associations differs from country to country. Because of these reasons, measures of organizational density are generally not good measures of social connections, despite their frequent use for that purpose."