Kidnectivity

teentech

It’s a long one but oh so worth it.

(WORLD) A phenomena to some, a ‘so what’ to others. Im writing this now whilst sat in a starbucks, on a wireless connection, using a laptop. I’m mid thirties and across from me is a young guy (18) with his laptop too. We acknowledged each other on arrival, but that’s it. He’s playing games and chatting to ‘friends’, and I’m tucking in to a muffin whilst I qwert.

My head has been spinning for some time now about the younger generation and their adoption of being connected 24/7, with people all over the world. I also have been thinking a fair bit about our social interaction and whether high speed public net access is going to increase the number of people we speak to or lessen it over all.

For me, the net is a god send, because without it, I would just be sat here, staring into space. At least now I feel I’m doing something. But another way of looking at it, is I’m out of my house, doing publicly, what I would otherwise be doing privately, and I’m viewable by everyone sat in a coffee shop, I can zone out and stare at my screen, or people watch, as and when I feel like it. As I type now I can over hear conversations around me and I’m being exposed to some piped music that I wouldn’t normally listen to. So in this instance, being connected right now, is a good thing for my social interaction. Some would argue that without this, I would be making eye contact with people and joining in with or starting conversations. But that isn’t true for me. I can’t recall the last time I started up a conversation with a total stranger.

So here I am questioning a technology that’s deemed by many to cut off a generation, when in fact I’m evidence of the opposite. But I’m 33. What if I was 17?

Well lets jump back to that young guy sat opposite to me for a second. He’s doing everything that I am, publicly on his machine and more so. He may be playing an online game with someone (or some people) in another country. The term MMORPGs after all, stands for Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game… and if he is indeed chatting to friends, then they could be anywhere in the world too. Without a doubt I’m certain that he’s doing far more social interaction than I am!

So the thoughts continue to the youtube generation of handy cam owners and movieclip creations on simple software for under 10 mins and made public for friends and strangers to access. It’s a ‘Jetsons’ style futuristic thought for many people. But this is the norm now. Its even passe in certain circles. Young people have this availablity at their finger tips and often have known about, and taken part in it, for waaaay longer than I’m sure to have known about it.

This ‘tube’ generation, don’t need to pick up a newspaper anymore… or even listen to the radio. Those old medias are way behind the ‘now’ instant feed, from their very own global source of connected friends constantly searching and scanning the internet for the latest updated blogs, feeds, opinions and videos. Music isn’t found by thumbing through hundreds of CDs on a wet saturday afternoon, its bulletined around a network of thousands instantly, and available for streaming download faster than it takes to create the track in the first place.

Everythings changed, but everything is still changing. And none of us can keep up and none of us will be able to keep up. Just like when idle computers link up across the globe to process some massive calculation, we have millions of the most powerful computers in the world (our brains) connecting up together and sifting through every last detail of public content to share. It’s become a race for some, no-one wants to be on the receiving end of forum flames stating how ‘old’ we are with the latest news. A race to be first with something incredible that just been made public is like the ‘grail’ on the net. Its a confirmation to peers that a person is on the top of his game, a person with knowledge is a person with power and with that comes popularity and all the hangers on that dream of achieving a similar found social status from a generation that has to fight to create a voice in an environment that largely tries to silence them. I can’t blame the younger generation for wanting to stay indoors can you?

Whilst so many of us are attempting to enforce the rule that fresh air and heathly eating is king… ‘get off your backside and get outside’ … this generation already know that. They aren’t the stupid ones. They have ‘rules’ and moral codes that most of the planet aren’t even aware of.

Simply put, the more young people that are connected the better, they have a new found freedom, which is being pushed and stretched as far as they can. Many people can’t see it, because they choose to ignore it and continually stress how the ‘old days were better’.

Well bollocks to that I say. Now, activities and information, skills and opinions are a double click or less away. Its a planet without borders, where a universal language is spoken. I wonder how much of the english language has accelerated since the introduction of the internet in the home? I bet it’s a huge leap. Some one must have measured it surely?

The more I think about life in the year 2000+ the more I am jealous of everyone 20yrs younger than me. Sometimes I think I was born too early, and other times I think I was born just right to be old enough to be taken seriously, yet mentally and physically young enough to be able to interact with people half my age.

One things for sure, now people don’t need to wait for the wheels of production to move before information can spread to the interested parties. Printing presses don’t have to be started, marketing campaigns don’t have to be planned out, distribution rights won’t take anywhere near as long, and packaging in some areas has almost become completely unnecessary to a certain degree.
Where will the young mind with all this access go next?

Well the skies the limit and the limit is infinite and with figures like Google and Myspace racking up billions of hits and 100s of millions of members, we’re still only scratching the surface.

It didn’t seem like that long ago, people spoke of every home having a computer, then it was every home having an internet connection… and now its every home having a super fast internet connection. What next? Once we’ve all got this super fast connectivity, we’re already being lined up to have the current ‘old media’ of television shoved down our phone lines and piped wirelessly through our walls. But is that it? What’s beyond that? Entertainment is such a small part of what we do. Interaction is everything.

I’m certain the emphasis will move to communities. ‘Second Life’ is an example. Google it if you’re unaware what it is. Communities are everything, communication is everything, people are everything. This phase of ‘wowing’ people with interactive media and brightly coloured animations is so ‘passing’. Its a gimmicky ‘feature’ … communities are where its at. Create a place where like minded people can gather, share and feel at ease, and you’ll have the world. You’ll have a loyal base. You’ll have the new web brands of the future. You’ll have access to everything they know and love and they’ll be content to share with you their hard earned cash too.

If Tescos can move into car insurance, and Marks & Spencer’s can issue credit cards all on the back of their brand power. What do you think Myspace and Google can achieve.

If Google opened up a high street shop with blacked out windows and not a hint of any purpose or product available, how many people do you think will queue up to get through the opening doors on day 1? Exactly, 1000s and 1000s.

Now imagine swapping every shop in your local high St with every website you regularly visit, what an amazing sight that will be. It’ll never happen of course, and why would it? Its old media after all.

But one thing is for sure, its not my brain that needs to figure anything out any more. The net feels like a wave to me, one which I’m lucky enough to ride on, and experience everything that someone else has thought of, making my life better if I’m careful and listen to the right people/opinions and difficult if I try and wade through it all myself, like some techno-hermit.

Go on, get outside and go online, emmerse yourself, sign up to every account and free site available, who cares if it’ll become the next big thing or not, who knows? Why worry about it? We’re not picking football teams here people, its the internet, its as much or as little as we want. But one things for sure, every time you think ‘no, that’s not for me’ a thousand people elsewhere are signing up anyway and enjoying the view for as long as its lasts.

So here’s to the young man in the corner, who I haven’t spoken to, whos got a crazy journey ahead of him and who doesn’t even realise the massive importance of today and where he’s at right now, who’s taking it all in his stride and isn’t thinking about life 20yrs ago, its all about now, and tomorrow and where it can take him and what he can make of it all, mentally, physically and financially.

Contributed by Mark and reproduced with kind permission from his blog.

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MS/DesignShare Podcast#81

csessums

The 81st MediaSnackers podcast is presented with DesignShare and features Christopher Sessums.

(WORLD) The MediaSnackers podcast focusses on individuals, organisations or companies who are simply impressing us and which are crying out for more discussion.

Our second DesignShare and MediaSnackers podcast sees us (Christian Long and DK) talking to Director of Distance Education at University of Florida, Christopher Sessum.

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0.00—0.27 intros
0.28—1.43 exploring the essence of Christopher’s blog
1.44—4.34 who/what is on Christopher radar
4.35—8.25 early adopters and learning outside of school
8.26—10.54 who is doing it right
10.55—15.28 hi-touch and are young teachers doing something different
15.29—16.41 one piece of advice
16.42—17.03 outro

Additional links referenced:

Christopher Sessum’s blog

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Audience Yorkshire Training Part 2

Short film review of a corporate training day for Audience Yorkshire.

MediaSnackers provided training for a group of arts marketing professionals. Within that group, people had different levels of knowledge of new technologies, but MediaSnackers tailored his training accordingly so that everyone in the group got the maximum benefit from the session. We received great feedback from the participants who all really benefited from MediaSnackers’s relaxed but very informed approach.
Melanie Daykin, Projects Manager, Audiences Yorkshire

Related post: Audiences Yorkshire Corporate Training Part 1

MS Podcast#80

rayaribbius

The 80th MediaSnackers podcast delves into the world of theoneminutesjr.org project.

(WORLD) The MediaSnackers podcast focusses on individuals, organisations or companies who are simply impressing us and which are crying out for more discussion.

Raya Ribbius is the project officer for the theoneminutesjr.org project (those 60sec youth-created films we feature at the beginning of each MediaSnackers vodcasts), and works out of the European Cultural Foundation.

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0.00—0.51 intros
0.52—3.08 theoneminutesjr.org project, its aims and history
3.09—4.21 the numbers and scale
4.22—6.51 the issue of media and digital literacy/infrastructure
6.52—9.39 the bigger strategic aims
9.40—10.59 the future of the project
11.00—11.12 outro

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Children Online Event

nmk

Speaking at a half day seminar.

(GBR) Coordinated by the NMK, the Children Online event was an intimate afternoon seminar focussed on exploring how young people and children are populating online platforms, plus how organisations and brands can utilise this migration into new media.

MediaSnackers was up first, giving a contextualising talk about the change in the youth media landscape and young people themselves. We thought it went well :-)

To follow was Simon Fuller from Grid Learning discussing his online tween-focussed platform, Grid Club. Fantasic overview which focussed on how there is desire for children to get involved but attitudinal dangers of ‘leaving-them-to-it’ by the parents.

Lizzie Jackson was up next, from the BBC and gave insights into strategy formation when it comes to kids online—what works and what doesn’t through illustrative case studies. She also threw out some fantastic stats about how 100% of under 12s have and do play computer games.

To end the first session, from Scream Out Loud, Juliet Tzabar offered a grounding of the participatory stratgies through the use of new media and did great at bringing the debate back to the focus of empowerment and interactivity.

All talks echoed the point that there is a knowledge vacuum not with young people and children but with parents and adults. Something, MediaSnackers feels passionate about and which we’re trying to bridge through our training.

For the second half Juliet Tzabar was up again and took us through a ‘practical’ session on user testing and development for digital projects—audio reinforcement, product testing, mouse control, picture hyperlinks, rollover states, rewards etc.

Neil Hughston from Saatchi & Saatchi International gave us a sweet insight into how brands are approaching the online engagement of kids. From a creative agency standpoint, he discussed the use interactive channels and how this all have given them a challenge—kids participate in online experience rather than consumers.

And last but not least, Dino Burbridge from Digital Outlook talked about creating or designing for kids and gave us his top ten. From ‘knowing your target’ right through to ‘free stuff’ strategies. Obvious when stated but so obvious if someone asked you the question isolation.

Thanks again to the NMK for inviting us to attend and participate in the event and also thank you to Scream Out Loud for suggesting us, plus thanks to those individuals who allowed us to interview them for the forthcoming vodcast episode.

Related post: Children Online

MS/DesignShare Podcast#79

chrislehmann

The 79th MediaSnackers podcast is presented with DesignShare and features Chris Lehmann.

(WORLD) The MediaSnackers podcast focusses on individuals, organisations or companies who are simply impressing us and which are crying out for more discussion.

Our first DesignShare and MediaSnackers podcast sees us (Christian Long and DK) talking to Chris Lehmann, Principal of the Science Leadership Academy in Philedelphia, exploring the new pedagogy of this technology-rich high school.

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0.00—0.22 intros
0.23—3.54 the formation of the Science Leadership Academy
3.55—6.53 exploring the impact of new technology on pedagogy
6.54—7.35 what is school 2.0
7.36—10.54 planning vs reality (areas of development)
10.55—14.38 how the physical space design influences the culture
14.39—18.22 rhetoric used
18.23—19.34 outro

Additional links referenced:

• Chris’s Practical Theory weblogEdutopia article on the SLADesignShare articleAlan November conferenceNECC conference

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Related posts: DesignShare/MediaSnackers Mash-up.

MS Podcast#78

shahrezkhan

The 78th MediaSnackers podcast looks at a project exploring youths European identity.

(WORLD) The MediaSnackers podcast focusses on individuals, organisations or companies who are simply impressing us and which are crying out for more discussion.

Shahrez Khan works for Peacechild, and is the project coordinator for a magazine project called Faith in Europe.

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0.00—0.24 intros
0.21—1.10 how Shahrez started
1.11—1.58 how Peacechild works
1.58—3.08 Faith in Europe
3.09—4.06 what stage they are at
4.07—5.06 youth involved
5.07—6.45 themes/content
6.46—7.52 why a magazine
7.53—9.54 other projects
9.55—10.39 the future of the project
10.39—10.48 outro

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MS Podcast#77

davehancock

The 77th MediaSnackers podcast discusses BT’s corporate social responsibility investments/strategies.

(WORLD) The MediaSnackers podcast focusses on individuals, organisations or companies who are simply impressing us and which are crying out for more discussion.

Dave Hancock is head of Education and Volunteering for BT, talking to MediaSnackers about thier education and youth programmes.

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0.00—0.20 intros
0.21—1.15 BT Education and the Better World campaign
1.16—4.26 manifestion of the strategy
4.27—6.15 the Seen and Heard Awards
6.16—8.09 the digital age focus
8.10—9.54 why BT cares
9.55—11.10 the future
11.11—11.21 outro

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Continue reading MS Podcast#77

MS Vodcast Episode#004

Apr 07—Part Two, second part of the South African MediaSnackers Vodcast Special.

The MediaSnackers monthly vodcast is a fifteen minute shot (more or less) of yummy-youth-media-goodness. Featuring content made, produced or focussed on young people and media from around the globe.


Featuring: MediaSnackers interviewing youth/media professionals at the 5th World Summit on Media for Children; music by 340ml.

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If you have any short video content (under two-mins) relating to youth media projects, are involved in any aspects of youth media or are a young person producing digital content (audio/visual) and want to discuss submitting pieces for consideration, please get in touch.

Check out the ‘South Africa Project’ page.

MediaSnackers Vodcast page

MS Vodcast Episode#004

Apr 07—Part One, first part of the South African MediaSnackers Vodcast Special.

The MediaSnackers monthly vodcast is a fifteen minute shot (more or less) of yummy-youth-media-goodness. Featuring content made, produced or focussed on young people and media from around the globe.



Featuring: MediaSnackers delivering youth training at the 5th World Summit on Media for Children.

itunessubscribeSubscribe directly to these podcasts through iTunes by clicking the ‘subscribe’ icon opposite (download iTunes for free here).

Not using iTunes? Then just copy / paste this feed and drop it into your podcast aggregating software.

If you have any short video content (under two-mins) relating to youth media projects, are involved in any aspects of youth media or are a young person producing digital content (audio/visual) and want to discuss submitting pieces for consideration, please get in touch.

Check out the ‘South Africa Project’ page.

MediaSnackers Vodcast page