PCM EquityUK Network Update.

Greetings PCM Adventurers (I've just posted this update to the Equity (unofficial) Green Room, a social network hosted on Ning to provide the social networking opportunities not currently present as part of the EquityUK official members area)

I love green rooms like I enjoy railway stations. They are full of purpose and intent but provide stasis and space to prepare. Waiting for action is the purpose of the occupation. Do you feel similar about green room spaces? or train stations for that matter?

Unexpectedly however social media networks like Facebook and Twitter do not make me feel this way. In fact I experience alarming levels of anxiety on occasions but its not a reflection on digital engagement but the chaos those platforms contain.

The online spaces I work to create have the green rooms and railway stations sentiment in mind when in development.

Where do you spend time 'comfortably' online? (responses in the comments please)

Equity UPDATE

1. The Online Branch is up and running. It is open as a pilot welcoming all Equity members. We have until the end of August to let it run free! Its unique features are its human enacted moderation and the architecture developed to support the proposal and progression of motions. The first motion to pass through the Branch has been about the Housing Crisis.

Context Archive

  • Opening discussion in the Chat Room prior to the motion's proposal [LINK]
  • Formal Motion Debate (Comments tab)  [LINK]
  • Amendment propositions and discussion (Amendment tab) [LINK]

A second motion has been tabled today called The "Equity 'Special Attention' List - Can it be used to better effect?" This started off as a chat room thread back in February by Ian Seale, [LINK TO CHAT THREAD] and was transposed in to a motion during the Housing Crisis motion mentioned above.

Are you an Equity member?

If you haven't join the Branch yet please do.


 2. Equity's Annual Representative's Conference is this weekend. 

Here is the 2016 ARC Agenda

image from www.thestage.co.uk

What is ARC? Annual Representative Conference (ARC).

This takes place every year, usually in the Spring. It is normally held in London for two years running and then in a different part of the country (the members choose, this year it is being held in Bristol), and is the opportunity for the Council and Representatives from the committees and branches to come together to propose and debate union policy, as well as move forward the work of the union.

Decisions that are passed at the ARC with a two thirds majority are binding on the union and become policy. Representatives are elected and the conference usually lasts for 2 days with the agenda being broken down into debates on Recorded Media, Live Performance, Union Structure, Equality, Health and Safety, Communications and Membership Services.

Members who are not involved in a committee or branch but would like to attend the ARC can come as an Observer. Information about how to get a place is always published in the spring issue of the Equity Magazine.


 3... finally for this update The Stagemanagers' Guide to Buyouts Booklet

image from www.pcmcreative.com

On Friday 29th January 2016 Equity's Stagemanagement Committee hosted an open meeting to discuss the issue of buyout contracts discussing...

  • What’s good about them?
  • What’s bad about them?
  • What can Equity do about them?
  • What can you do about them?

I'd like to share this with you the resulting prepared for print booklet.

Its not just for Stagemanagers. Check it out.

Thank you for reading this update. 

If you haven't join the Branch yet please do.

Best Regards

Caron

Readers of the blog please let me know if you like these live performance industry updates in the comments.


Embed Responsively

image from alistapart.comIllustration by

Anybody associated with the arena of web design even on the periphery as I am has heard about responsive design. The concept of designing a single web site that adapts (responds) to the devise it is being displayed upon. A time was that it was by analysing the stats of your visitors you could predict the most likely size of monitor and resolution being required and provide a selection of sites sized accordingly along with a client side query to determine the size expected and deliver pages in response to the query. Then there came mobile! At least that's how I understood it in my limited experience. I was down the rabbit hole! It was at this time I became aware of reciprocity, propinquity and normalisation. Coding a design could be rigidly and inflexibly set in tables with sliced up graphic elements with hotspots and links. These would 'explode' and 'break' displaying in what seemed like an arbitrary manner depending on your favoured browser. The separation of code and style enabled consistency and including a set of instructions to overwrite different browser margin defaults helped. The Cascading Style Sheet (CSS). I was an advocate for responsive as soon as it became a thing. I expect these 'zero default' style sheet addenda still exist and form the basis of secret design formulae many pure coders still closely guard. Its tricky to achieve... or things might have changed.

Web presence and the ability to create one was the objective of my web building education and as each element of building web sites became specialisms in their own right html, xhtml, CSS, asp, php, xml, javascript - these became distinct from the visual front interface which in turn developed its own special branches UDI (User Designed Interface), UXI (User Experience Interface) until being a master of all was an impossibility and engaging a professional was beyond the cost effectiveness of my needs, I turned to the very thing I loathed when I first begun my education. BYO (Build Your Own), drop and drag applications evolved into a necessary evil.

I remember the first drop and drag experiences within browser environments afforded by javascript and flash. The move away from passive unmovable pages with form fields the only interaction was the introduction of user experience integration. Whether that equated to 'engagement' is contentious, still being discussed. I could indeed go on but this post is Embed Responsively.

Many blogging platforms and BYO are now to a greater or lesser extent 'responsive' to varying degrees of success. It is an art. The transition through absolute and relative positioning to fully responsive adaptive web pages has been aesthetically essential to the seamless, cross platform, multi device user experience.

Returning the premise of this post ...web presence and the ability to create one being the objective of my web building education... left me forever needing to learn something new to keep up to date! I just want to gather resources and information for inclusion in one space with a link to share. Simple as! But...

Although BYO and Blogging platforms (the ones I use currently) offer responsive templates and elements, the media I gather from around the web and the media I create and upload are embedded using html code snippets, podcasts from Audioboom, audio interviews stored on Soundcloud, videos and playlists on YouTube, PDF documents published on ISSUU, presentation slide decks on Slideshare or Photo galleries from Flickr or Instagram they are traditionally fixed in size (height and width). 

Yes I'm getting to the point!

The straight copy and paste of these html embed snippets don't adapt to a responsive environment. I was overjoyed when I was introduced to embedresponsively.com - "It helps build responsive embed codes for embedding rich third-party media into responsive web pages." It was created and is maintained by @jeffehobbs based on research and work by Theirry Koblentz, Anders Andersen and Niklaus Gerber.

I love it, I wanted to share it - here it is! embedresponsively.com

Embedresponsively01anotated


Standing Up and Moving On - Ignite Liverpool

In November 2015 I spoke at Ignite Liverpool with a short, PechaKucha style presentation entitled "My Analogue Life in a Digital World" It's preface being...

Everyone has a story. We are analogue beings adapting to a digitally enabled world. This is my story. It all starts with a square peg and a round hole. It’s about personal perspective, about understanding your own story and its place beside everyone else’s. When did you plug in?

I'd been capturing, live streaming and producing media for projects for the last few years and my presenting confidence had plummeted since I hadn't done any talks for a while. I also found myself out on my own after being in a collabortive partnership where I'd taken a different direction to my original career journey. As sad as the close of that era in my life was I had to accept and embrace change to move on.


Standing up where I knew it would be recorded and provide me with an asset of me presenting not created by me was my key motivator.


So thank you Ignite Liverpool for this opportunity.

I do hope I get to present again in 2016 but, and this is why Ignite Liverpool had been on my radar I will be attending via the livestream they run each time.



On the 26th Jan 2016 I watched the live stream.

Skitch

Adrian McEwen 

Skitch(1)

Louise Shannon

Skitch(2)

Tom Williamson


I love attending via travel but attending via the web can provide an alternative and equally as informative experience.


Extending The Audience - Mind The Gap

image from www.1hq.co.uk

Emerging out of the results and lessons learnt from the 2014 Arts and Audiences Conference in Rekjavik, where the Digital Audience Experience (DAEx) was conceived as a real time experiement to extend the reach of the physical event audience using digital tools. Extend The Audiences was commissioned by BAFA - British Arts Festivals Assocation's Mind The Gap conference in 2015.

Check out the legacy scrapbook webpage. It also hosts the audio of the talk I delivered to provide context to the initiative.

I wish to begin by talking about the finances. Essential expenses are non-negotiable, (travel, accomocation and the provision of a sensible meals allowence) a digital audience expeience can cost a little as you can afford. I remember well something I learn attending various business seminars, Marketing should be seen as an core investment not an extranious expense. The same is true of when considering an audience. What is the value of your online audience? Do you want them to pay for the online offering? Do you want them to subsidise the provision on the venue-to-web content? Is the content produced by a social media team as bragging-promotioanl-ambient-fodder or, Do you want to encourage the participation of those who wish to join an online audience 'experience'? Are you wanting an active or passive audience?

The pursose of both events (Arts and Audiences / BAFA's Mind The Gap) was to bring together like-minded professional working in the sectors of 'arts and culture audience development' in regards to the Nordic Councils' Arts and Audiences Conference and for organisers or arts, music, culture and science festivals in regards to UK based oganisation BAFA.

Ever since the conception of MediaCampNottingham which chose to run a business event on a saturday, my own audience demographic tartget has been those looking to continue their own personal and professional development, often refered to as CPD. Depending on where within an organisation you are employed opportunities to develop knowledge can be limited. Being a regular conference delegate on behalf of your employer is a privalege afforded to a few. That opportunity may require a report back to the wider employ in the department or it may be a peer privelige to provide opportunity to meet fellow professionals working within the sector in which you work. This tends to be primarily to share findings, research and resulting case studies. Influental people are invited to deliver talk, presentations and lead workshops.

A good conference can be inspiring, informative, enriching and instrumental to developing further from a knowledge and industry underderstanding and in networking with future project partners.

But not everyone gets to attend. Extending the Audience is about embodying that sentiment. With wifi and connected meeting rooms with projectors I've long been an advocate for streaming events into board rooms with refreshements, or groups meeting geographically to collectively watch a livestream of an event. Platforms like Appear and Google Hangout can take 8 connections. That can be single face to face conections or windows on entire satilite micro events or gatherings all connecting to the 'video room' for a untiting experience using the digital environment as the common space.

I'm always looking for organisation wanting to explore the digital potential of extending their traditional audience offering.

Using existing mainstream platforms and direct dialogue with the registered digital audience registrants I  create online audience experiences with real value to those individuals participating remotely. If you were wondering I am an independent social media practitioner and capable of operating independently of a venue's infrastructure. I require power and a good 4G mobile signal.
 
For BAFA's Mind The Gap - Extend the Audience the following apps formed a toolset shared with anyone wanting to take part.

  1. Appear.in a browser based online video meeting space for post session discussion after watching live streamed presentations or for digital audience lounge-chat breakouts
  2. Periscope/Bambuser to mobile livestream
  3. Blab.im to deliver panel discussions with digital audience opportunities to join the panel and enter the discussion.
  4. BEME to facilitate fly-on-the-wall, first person perspective video streams of the guided tour event elements independent of the fixed location conference venue.

All the apps in the toolkit for that event are details on the scrapbook page along with download links for iOS and Android versions of the apps where availible. Its also about enabling the audience you have geographically being able to share with ease with thier own networked audiences too.

Interested? Get in touch through the PCM contact web page or Tweet me @pcmcreative

I have so many plans for this initiative. So much potential for audience reach as well as legacy documentation.