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The Challenge of Social Technologies. All networked up. David Steven, River Path Associates. Daily Summit # 1. World Summit on Sustainable Development “Instant news and comment” Updated 10 times a day Went where the mainstream media wouldn’t/couldn’t. Screen grab of dailysummit 1.

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The challenge of social technologies

The Challenge of Social Technologies

All networked up

David Steven, River Path Associates


Daily summit 1
Daily Summit # 1

  • World Summit on Sustainable Development

  • “Instant news and comment”

  • Updated 10 times a day

  • Went where the mainstream media wouldn’t/couldn’t



Fstr technology
FSTR technology

  • On the hoof…

    • Technology: cheap, flexible, versatile

    • Content: broad, deep, expensive

    • Marketing: not an add-on

    • Learning opportunity for institution

The benchmark by which blogger coverage of political events may be judged

Tim Blair

The Australian


Building a buzz
Building a buzz

  • High impact:

    • 110,000 site visits in 2 month ‘live’ period

    • Many regular visitors – community created

    • 262 inward links

    • Ranked 5th on Google – official British government site ranked 18th

    • Ranked top on DayPop



Daily summit 2
Daily Summit # 2

  • World Summit on the Information Society

  • Dual language site – English/Arabic

  • Team of reporters



A different kind of buzz
A different kind of buzz…

  • Niche publishing

    • 60,000 site visits and 250 links

    • Extensive media coverage – Guardian, BBC, various radio etc.

    • Iranian webloggers/Iranian president

Citizen’s media meets bulldog journalism; finds the future of news: I’m witnessing the future of journalism

Jeff Jarvis



World bank president
World Bank President

  • Amplification

    • Who will succeed James Wolfensohn?

    • From ‘off-the-radar’ to media firestorm

    • First stop for world’s media

    • Huge interest inside the Bank

If any of you want to be up to date on the inside scoop check

World Bank President and you’ll probably know as much as I do.

James Wolfensohn



Low level panel
Low Level Panel

  • Building a movement

    • Driving grassroots change across the UN system

    • Blogging… also tagging, forum, Flickr, Wikipedia etc.

    • Innovation in the ‘grey spaces’: hive mind


Why use social technologies
Why use social technologies?

It doesn’t work…

  • Low appetite for risk

  • Not prepared to move fast

  • Insistent on traditional command and control

  • Technology as ‘cudgel’

  • Know what you’re doing before you start

  • Traditional notions of authority

It works…

  • Interesting story to tell

  • Story tellers enabled

  • Genuine connection to audience

  • Playful attitude to technology

  • Learning through experimentation

  • Not waiting for permission


Information strategies and policy influence
Information strategies and policy influence

  • Current information strategies

    • ‘Open source’ challenge –often under the radar

  • Information foraging

    • ‘Folksonomy’ challenge – experiments with emergent order

  • Information landscape of tomorrow

    • Disruptive change the only constant


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