E L S U A ~ A KM Blog by Luis Suarez

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Snap Bird – Experimenting with Curation of Live Tweeting at Conference Events

Gran Canaria - Roque Nublo Surroundings in the SpringOne of the many activities I keep enjoying quite a bit over the course of the years with regards to social networking is its innate ability to experiment and play with social technologies in order to figure out new use cases, proofs of concept, additional bursts of productivity, new business uses, etc. etc. You name it. All in all with the main premise behind all of that fun and play to figure out new methods to become more productive, effective and efficient at what I have been aiming all along: work smarter, not necessarily harder.

And to that extent I think it is now a good time to help introduce a new experiment I have been playing with in the last few months and which I think may be of benefit to others as well, specially, if you are into finding out about highlights from the hundreds of conference events out there, mainly, in the Social Business space that we get to attend or not. This new experiment has got to do with two different activities we all get to carry out eventually, but that I myself have grown to become rather fond of over time, since I may have just hit that perfect use case for me to continue making use of it eventually: live tweeting and curating highlights from conference events I get to attend and participate in.

Now, what do I mean with that exactly? Well, as you well know, there used to be a time where I had enough time in my hands to live blog conference events that I would be attending from all over the place. From there onwards, I moved on to putting together lengthy blog post to highlight some of the major key learnings I went through for each and everyone of those events. Things evolved further, availability of time got shorter and shorter and I moved into the next phase: live tweeting of events using the hash tag of the event itself in particular.

That method worked really well, till Twitter itself decided to play funny and not allow you to get back to those tweets after a certain period of time making them disappear into thin ether, which was rather annoying, since you new your live tweets are out there, yet, you can’t access them anymore! Not very helpful! And very frustrating over time, I can guarantee you that! Grrr

At the same time you get to notice how the vast majority of the live tweeting that goes on at conference events as of late is just a mere regurgitation of short phrases from the speakers trying to be compacted in less than 140 characters, so that other folks would be capable of retweeting the same thing over and over again. Yes, I know what you are thinking by now… That can certainly get very tiring over the course of time, as you get to bump into the same content live tweeted over and over! So what to do?

I am not sure what strategies have you folks adopted in order to keep providing value when “reporting” those live tweets (I would love to find out more about them in the comments, if you would want to share those tips across), but a little while ago I decided to try out one myself that I am starting to like quite a bit! And that is not so much to share those tweets reporting on what the speaker(s) may be sharing across, but more trying to build further upon it with my own insights on what I may have learned, may agree with or may disagree with by sharing a thought or two to help build up my highlights of the event.

Seeing how cumbersome it has become to then put together those various insights into meaningful blog posts I kept thinking what a pity that I would not be able to refer back to those tweets after a short period of time just because Twitter decided it was not helpful (to them!) keep those Twitter searches on hashtags going in the medium, long run. So I started to look out there, on the third party Twitter Apps ecosystem to see if there would be a good choice out there to help out address and solve this problem.

And it looks like I may have found something worth while exploring and playing with. Have you played with Snapbirg.org? No? Well, maybe you should! I am loving it at the moment! Snapbird is a lovely Twitter App Web site service that allows you to query Twitter to display a number of tweets, based on a particular Twitter ID and any hash tag of your liking and the free service would be able to display the last 1,000 tweets, which for one’s own tweets at a conference event is more than enough, I can imagine.

From there onwards the curation part of the experiment kicks in, because once you have captured all of your tweets, or those of the conference hash tag, depending on how many people live tweet eventually, you would be able to export them all as a very handy .PDF file (With Print as .PDF) and it is ready to share it across into much more sophisticated repositories. Not bad, eh? Indeed, not bad at all!

So that is what I have been experimenting with lately and with some pretty good results, at least, good enough for me to gt a grasp of what I keep learning at any event I may attend, specially, while on the road, because once I have got those .PDF files with the live tweets captured after the event itself, I just go ahead and I upload them into Slideshare, as if they were a presentation and right there I can share them with everyone else who may be interested in them. And voilá! Ready to go!

In order to show what it would look like I have put together already a couple of .PDF files from five different face to face events that I have participated in the recent past. To name: The Melcrum Digital Summit (In London), the brilliant Enterprise 2.0 Summit (In Paris), Congreso de Empresa 2.0 y Social Business (In Seville), the Social Business Strategy Summit (in London) and, of course, my favourite event so far this year: the Social Business Forum (In Milan). And since I have uploaded them to Slideshare already, here you have got the embedded codes for each and everyone of them, with an opportunity as well to download the along, as you may see fit:

Hopefully, from here onwards it would become a regular habit from yours truly; as a I keep getting to attend various other different events, I will continue to share them along over here for other folks out there, who may be interested in these topics, to benefit, as appropriate. And perhaps perfect timing, too!, since I am about to prepare for my next business trip, this time happening over the weekend, when I make my way to the always fascinating and insightful Enterprise 2.0 event in Boston and where I will be for the entire week, so if you fancy getting together for a drink or a meal, probably the best way to reach me would be through Twitter, at @elsua, or through my mobile number (If you have it…).

Hope you enjoy this experiment, and hope it does prove useful to you as well, just as much as it has been for myself in the last few months. I would also love to know what you think about it in the comments, please 🙂 Is it worth while pursuing it further? Are you getting any additional benefits of that live tweeting I have been doing all long, now that I can finally curate it properly and share it across with all of you? Let me know what you think.

Really looking forward now to putting it into a massive test at the event of events on Enterprise 2.0 in just a few hours from now! Boston, here we come! Ready?

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7 comments

    1. Hi Phil! Thanks very much for dropping by and for sharing that link! Very helpful tip, indeed! Although didn’t enjoy much getting this message:

      “Oh noes elsua!, you’ve got 36459 tweets and I can only get the first 3200 tweets”

      Plus also the fact that backs up the whole round the tweets, versus just the ones under a specific hash tag, which is what I would favour the most when curating the tweets of a specific event. Makes much more sense, imo, don’t you think?

  1. Luis,

    quite interesting, and i think it summarizes the way i always wanted to use twitter from live events. my first attempt was to use it as a blogging platforms (micro-blog, n’est pas?) but the lack of tools to revisit those posts made it almost impossible to use – ended up spending countless hours formatting word and excel documents to aggregate the content.

    my (now) next generation, or rather the current one after diff tries, is to add value to the stream with commentary and links — but again, lack of historical features makes it hard to future-blog it. will try to see how it can get it to work with these tools and methods.

    thanks for writing this up!

  2. To address the problem of lost Tweet history, I use a tool (Twitter Tools in WordPress–there are others out there) that creates a blog post at the end of the day with all my tweets for the day.

    This way, I can always search my blog for a past tweet. Not sure but it probably doesn’t hurt my SEO either.

    This doesn’t solve the problem of other people’s tweets at a conference unless you re-tweet them. I guess that’s a personal call.

    Thanks for the ideas.

  3. Luis –

    This is terrific! For those of us who don’t travel quite as much as you do, it’s a fabulous way to learn from the best meetings.

    I’m looking forward to your next meeting reports!

    – Mary

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