Sunday, June 24, 2007

Podcasters Across Borders - Taking Your Initiatives to the Next Level

Podcasters Across Borders
Kingston, June 24, 2007

Taking Your Initiatives to the Next Level
Terry Fallis, Kate Morgan and Ian Hull

Terry Fallis - Thornley Fallis
  • started Inside PR podcast (Joseph Thornley was already blogging)
  • doesn't script heavily; decides in advance what they want to talk about, but these are topics they have been talking about for a while
  • weekly show that comes out at the same time every week
  • familiar format, which they change up periodically
  • has done various things to promote the podcast; recently created a Facebook page
  • if you build it, people don't necessarily come. You have to promote it.
  • has had 25-30 speaking engagements to speak on social media even though he has only been podcasting for a year
Ian Hull - Hull & Hull LLP
  • no sales pitch behind why they did it
  • bought into Terry's model
  • one podcast for core group of lawyers who send them work - snippets they know will be helpful
  • co-hosts with his partner in his firm
  • other podcast for the general public for a broader audience
  • before podcasts came into their world - being a good colleague, giving back - law of the Internet: if you give something for free, it will come back to you ten-fold
  • did not want to add anything else to their day. They were doing it twice a week; it was becoming overwhelming. Changed to sell the idea to the other 15 lawyers in their firm, now they are all podcasting.
  • they don't want to just be on a treadmill keeping the business running; they want to do something interesting
  • a year ago, 14 listeners; now up around 100
  • trying to showcase their passion
  • getting 1200 hits on their blog in any given week; started blogging because they had to; all lawyers take turns blogging
  • subjects e.g. how to do a will challenge trial
  • Hull & Hull TV - new addition - public friendly area of their marketing
  • but they keep going back to the initial model of the podcast and keep building on it
  • now have a book - another "feed"
  • newsletter - sent out 4 times a year, often referred to in their podcast - taught to them by Terry Fallis; the podcast set up by Kate Morgan
  • plant the seeds: book, Tv - eventually they will get 2-3 new listeners to the podcast
  • in the field: they don't share - competitors are not going to tell people to listen to their podcast
  • originally sent out iPods to 150 people (no discount from Apple!) - most people gave them away - pre-loaded so that lawyers would not have to learn how to use iTunes, offered to re-load for them - some people have iTunes for personal, another for business
Kate Morgan - Podwise
  • started working with Hull & Hull LLP on marketing
  • started from scratch learning what podcasting is
  • can use it as a distribution channel to get out whatever information you want to distribute
  • need to be talking about something important to you
  • sharing legal knowledge, not legal advice, to other lawyers
  • conveys credibility - separates them from other lawyers who are not working in this space
  • leveraging this into more business, more speaking engagements
  • if you meet someone in an off-line context, you are more likely to listen to their podcast
  • if you are looking for legal advice, you are more likely to consult with someone you are familiar with
  • it all works together
  • they are looking to highlight their legal skills
  • all comments they get are very personal law-related comments from the public - people are desperate for this advice - a direct path to looking for real legal advice that people are willing to pay for - people are hungry for knowledge and advice
Terry Fallis also recently self-published a novel, The Best Laid Plans, which he put out as a podcast - started in January and finished in May. Half his listeners are from A lot more listeners than he expected, some from outside Canada. Book will be coming out in print form in 6-8 weeks. Hopes the podcast will build a bigger audience for his novel. He started a Facebook group for it which he uses to communicate with the people who have been listening.

This Blog Needs Help

With all the fabulous minds looking at this site as I blog the Podcasters Across Borders meeting...I ask you, how can I improve the look of this blog? Yeah, aside from buying my own domain which I have done but haven't moved to yet for various reasons, how can I improve the LOOK?

Currently this is a pre-canned Blogger template. It looked cool 3 years ago when I picked it, but doesn't fit the bill now. I would like a site that pulls together this blog, a CV which I can update with a listing of papers, talks, both past and upcoming. Also, something more readable and accessible. I really hate the current colours and font because they are difficult to read. I have adjusted them which has helped a little, but not enough.

If anyone has a simple solution which I can host myself, I would appreciate hearing it. Basically it comes down to a lack of good design skills. I know what I like, but I cannot create it. Once created, I can update the site...I do have some basic Dreamweaver and HTML skill.

Thanks a bunch!


Saturday, June 23, 2007

Podcasters Across Borders: Managing Your Social Media

Podcasters Across Borders
Kingston, June 23, 2007

Managing Your Social Media
Bryan Person

blogging, podcasting, facebook, twitter, linkedin, RSS, Google tools..... can't use all of these and remain effective

first thing in the morning:
  • reads email
  • reads twitter
  • reads facebook
  • reads RSS reader
  • checks calendar for the day as to what he has to do
This is his routine.

There are times when you have to eliminate the distractions. If all these messages are coming at you, you cannot focus. You have to set some time to unplug from them and be productive.

Set specific time to goof off and play with the social media.

Use tags in your RSS reader to locate all of the posts on the one subject e.g. PAB2007 without visiting all of the individual sites - anything someone has tagged will come to one place.

You have to make tough decisions. You have met 50 interesting people this weekend - do you really need to subscribe to all of their feeds? Unsubscribe from it - you don't have to tell them. Limit the amount of information coming in to you every day. It is okay to skip an episode of a podcast. We feel attached when we really know someone - we want to listen to every episode, but sometimes we can't. You can always go back to listen.

Whether you use Google Reader, Bloglines, netvibes, who can you take off to make it a more manageable list for you?

Who is important to you? E.g. Mitch Joel is going to tell you everything about marketing; Chris Brogan is big into online communities and video - Chris is going to tell you about anything good
- he trusts these people, they are part of his network, and he lets them curate what he needs to know

Services for podcasters - leave yourself audio messages/record something when you think of it.
jott - you have to check it at least every 30 days so you don't lose your access

Julien Smith says: don't check your email first. Do other things first or you will find half the day gone.

Bryan Person: In your RSS readers: "Mark all as read" is very liberating

Chris Penn: Set up filter in your Gmail so that all the messages on any topic are together.

Wayne MacPhail - I Want Sandy - like a personal assistant - Turns your telephone into a productivity tool - tag things e.g. personal, telephone messages

Mitch Joel: If you are bad at getting back to voicemail messages, leave a message telling people that the email is the quickest way to get in touch with him, that he is not good at returning.

Donna Papacosta: pad of paper and pen. Old skool solution!

Podcasters Across Borders: Storytelling for Podcasts

Podcasters Across Borders
Kingston, June 23, 2007

Storytelling for Podcasts
Sonya Buyting -
This is Storytelling 101

From Neil Everton school of training - came from BBC, has trained CBC, BBC, CNN producers.
When the story is not obvious and chronological, where to put your emphasis. Can be used for anything: reporting, country songs, video.

e.g. Will Gad put footage together about climbing an iceberg - he sent his footage in to Discovery channel. Producer had to put it together into a story.

  • Need main character - e.g. Will Gad
  • figure out focus statement - one sentence - angle that will help you figure out the focus, the big picture - what is this guy's quest? - e.g. Will is climbing an iceberg because he gets off on the thrill.
  • determine the forces going for and against a character - e.g. pros - he is adventurous, he is knowledgeable (wrote a book), experienced (won medals), has a good team behind him, has good equipment, is able to access structural integrity of ice just by the sound; cons - obviously a dangerous hobby, people think he is kind of crazy, icebergs are extremely unstable, temperature differential
diagram - graph shaped like a whale (small hump, then big hump) -

1. the hook - takes you just after the peak of the first hump - you want people to pay attention to your story, to not change the channel or skip your podcast - use your strongest sound, your strongest video for the hook - don't give away the ending; make them want to watch - "Will Gad's done some crazy things, and today he is going to climb an iceberg" - put in a statement of enticement, where the character states what is ahead.

2. dips a bit - the context - too short and people won't understand the rest of the story - too long and people will lose the story - keep it short and sweet, get on with the good stuff in the story

3. story unfolding - divide into as many sections as you want to. Includes the obstacles the person is facing. Raising the drama of the story until you get to the very top.

4. climax - top of the peak - yay! our main character has triumphed!

5. wrap-up or denoument - recap of what the hook was, or forward thinking of what is coming next, or just conclude what you are saying.

All of this can be incorporated into what Tod Maffin has to say in the storytelling sessions he teaches.

Podcasters Across Borders: Getting Your Podcast Seen

Podcasters Across Borders
Kingston, June 23, 2007

Getting Your Podcast Seen (as well as heard)
Julien Smith

Many people who trust Google click on "I'm Feeling Lucky". You need to get your show at the top ranking on Google to find the audience who is looking for your content.

How to get Google to care about your podcast.

Whatever your podcast is, you have to be on Google because otherwise nobody cares. If you do not put yourself directly in front of people, they will pass you by. They are too busy.

1. become more than a podcaster

  • become a native web user
  • need to go deeper into the web and realize there are people in many places
  • become a web producer - communicate with people e.g. on forums
  • you are in important voice in your own niche. You have a lot to say in your area of expertise, but people just don't know it yet.
You need to own your own domain. This gives you control. If you have blogspot, libsyn or other hosted domain, you don't own your content, you don't have control.

e.g. Grow See This - gardening podcast

Searching Google for "gardening podcast" it does not come up on the first page. Google has to see those words on the page.

Tools that will help you determine what people are searching for:

Google is not the only thing to pay attention to, but it is important.

Is your site just a podcast, or is it other things? Is it also a gardening journal for example? Use to see how many people looking for gardening journal.

Google is one of the sites with the most trust out on the web.

Write for human beings, not for search engines. Start putting in words. For example, start typing in descriptions of the videos.

Blogs to read regularly:
SEOBook - everyone with a website should be subscribing to this blog.

Look at your statistics e.g. Google Analytics - you should have this on your site to get an idea of who is visiting, why do spikes occur, how people find your site through search engines.

Number of people who watch his show from the time he didn't care about this to the time he did care about this has increased exponentially. Easy to overlook as a podcaster. If you don't care, you will be missing out. This is an introduction for every podcaster to know, to allow you to continue to thrive and increase your audience.

Podcasters Across Borders: Marketing Toolkit

Podcasters Across Borders
Kingston, June 23, 2007

Marketing Toolkit
Chris Penn and Mitch Joel

Companies and organizations are currently playing catch up with their websites, trying to make things current. Building communities is the “new thing”; add it in now, it will be big shortly.

Keep track of who your users are--building your audience and tracking it. Chris Brogan: “We live or die on our database.”

Google, word of mouth (if you are tapped into your community), LinkedIn, activism and presence are combined - facebook, twitter, etc.

If your content stinks, it doesn’t matter what you do to market it.

Marketing - what you do to get people to your show.

e.g. Spider from MySpace - you can see who your friends are, and they provide you with the details

As a networker, you need to understand social networks. Start a blog. 90% of some groups in Ireland are on Beebo.

Go into MySpace, track your podcast. Try something, and see how it affects your numbers a week later. Keep going: this is creating a momentum. On MySpace you don’t have to be someone’s friend to see their content.

Each platform has its own database. Most people in the room here are on LinkedIn and on Facebook. Everyone in this room should be linking with each.

Start by getting an email address from the individual--goal is to ask people to sign up to your newsletter. People can sign up for an RSS feed, but you have no control of whether they read.

Get them into LinkedIn and your other spaces.

Joseph Thornley’s question: how would you feel if a marketing person was saying this?

Jay Moonah
: he started communities for Coors; they have a huge number of people who signed up, knowing this is for a company.

Mitch Joel: Dorito’s has hundreds of groups by fans. Why are they not engaging this group?

Podcasters Across Borders: Podcasting and Education

Podcasters Across Borders
Kingston, June 23, 2007

Beyond the Yellow Brick Road: Podcasting and Education
Moderator: Jim Milles
Dave Brodbeck
Charles Cadenhead
Vivan Vasquez
Andrea Ross

Dave Brodbeck does a lecturecast, and a home recorded show for kids called Why?

Charles Cadenhead - records the whole lecture, but then chops it up based on topics rather than posting the whole thing ("chunking"). He has also starting to do an audio FAQ to teach his students how to do their own recordings. He has also started a podcast for teachers.

Andrea Ross - Just One More Book - podcast to draw attention to children's books they think aren't getting enough attention. They also highlight interesting ideas in children's literature and literacy. Attract parents, teachers, librarians, book retailers. They have also found publishers listen to learn about their peers. Also used in academic settings as a resource for courses and programs. e.g. ESL program in Hong Kong. Their podcast isn't built for children, but they do get child listeners. Children send in their own book reviews.

Vivian Vasquez - CLIP Podcast - "critical literacy in podcast" - power of language, use of language - started after PAB2006 - had to imagine new ways of addressing work she was already doing. What does critical literacy look like in school settings as well as in home settings? She uses it in her own teaching as part of her required "reading" list. The show is also a space for her students to complete assignments, so they will record segments on various topics. Also used for development workshops, and in teaching parents. As an academic, she has to teach, engage teachers, and provide service.

Podcasters Across Borders: Copyright and Creative Commons

Podcasters Across Borders
Kingston, June 23, 2007

A New Mindset: Creative Commons Licensing
Andy Kaplan-Myrth and Kathi Simmons
Creative Commons Canada

***Launching the Canadian Legal Podcasting Guide today***

The Guide will be available as a PDF guide, and eventually move to a wiki format at some point. Hard copies being given out here today, and will be available from the website.

Kaplan-Myrth discussed Creative Commons and the various licensing options available. He recommends Canadians use the licensing from the Canadian website since it will be stronger in the Canadian legal system.


- fair dealing
- publicity rights - have the right to use your own image
- copyright
- trade-marks - use with your mark/brand/logo
- other legal issues - sources - public interest advocacy group - legal issues - Creative Commons Canada

Podcasters may be in an unique position to come together to lobby regarding copyright law.


Q: How do you deal with copyright in other countries?
A: Complicated, difficult to answer briefly; however, Canadian license is meant to be used in Canada; however, Canadian copyright law covers use in most other countries.

Q: If someone misuses my podcast, is my only recourse to hire a lawyer and sue them?
A: You could write to them asking them to remove use of your podcast. If not, you could hire a lawyer and send a "cease and desist" letter.

Podcasters Across Borders: Podcasting as Community

Podcasters Across Borders
Kingston, June 23, 2007

Who Are We Anyway? Podcasting as a Community
Ted Riecken -

“The medium is the message” - McLuhan, 1964

Identity, culture and change

“Podcasting community” - two historical comparisons
- why are we here? Shared interests, similar backgrounds
- putting a face to the voice

1. Medieval cities compared to podcasting:

George Woodcock - cities emerged to allow people who lived outside castle walls, who were on the periphery - came together to survive. People who were independent, free thinkers

libsyn - liberated syndication
“free radio”

This is a space that is open and "liberatory"

People with common interests coming together. Learning and sharing. Real people, stories, experience. You can relate to this more than “reality TV” or to highly produced movie, TV. Mostly exists in an unregulated space. Not the case for people working in mainstream media.

2. Frontier culture also characterizes podcasting

transitory, emerging, evolving

limited and alternative forms of commerce; monetizing and business don’t necessarily mesh with podcasting

emphasis on freedom, opportunity and growth; allows you to express yourself in ways you didn’t know you could before

on the edge; unregulated; operates on the periphery; issues around what you can and can’t do; undefined

easy access for all; inexpensive; you just need to work hard to develop your “settlement”

As a community, what are some of the features?

Podcasters Across Borders: Context is King

Podcasters Across Borders
Kingston, June 23, 2007

Context is King: Re-examining Conventional Wisdom for an Unconventional Media
by Arthur Masters

narrowcasting: pulling a file from a site rather than broadcasting; this is what allows for podcasting

a lot of podcasts talk about creating a podcast, so listening to podcasts primes you for creating a podcast. As soon as you have the tools to listen to it, you also have the tool to create it. This is like a meme; it is viral - the message has the information for passing on the message.

Marshall McLuhan
Noam Chomsky
Douglas Rushkov (Rushkoff?) - futurist - Media Virus (1993)

This has created a micronization of markets. Incredible diversity with no focus - not everyone are computer geeks, music experts, radio junkies. So specific that some cannot hold an audience of more than 30 listeners, but this is okay.

Wired magazine when it first started - anti-big business, cutting edge. Alvin Toffler wrote for them; not just a sports channel, but a sports channel for every sport. He seems to have been able to describe the environment we are living in now.

People are doing it out of passion, not for money. Not out of a sense of duty, but a sense of fulfilling a need in our media.

Chris Anderson - The Long Tail - democratization of distribution - living the socialist dream. Carl Marx - doing away with currency

Anderson is not a futurist, but does a good job of describing where we are right now. He is editor in chief of Wired magazine.

We have left the information age for the communication age. Linking blogger to blogger, podcaster to podcaster. Things are more word of mouth. We have entered the age of referral. Part of owning the means of production.

In the past, everyone had guitars in their garage. We have a new level of production.

We are hard-wiring ourselves for a network, almost a “neural” network. We are slowly laying a network by which we can communicate, affect the world. E.g. Oprah says she likes pashminas, and every woman between 35 and 55 has a pashmina a year later. We are participating in the collective wiring.

Timothy Leary - instead of being high on LSD, being high on the Internet [did he really say this?] - it is an expansion of consciousness.

It is “hot” in McLuhan terms.

Don’t just produce podcasts--revel in the moment! You are doing something new and really exciting. Stop and think about how far we have come.

Podcasters Across Borders

This weekend I am attending the international conference Podcasters Across Borders being held in Kingston, Ontario. There are about 100 participants and most are podcasters (I am in the minority as a podcaster wannebe here I think).

I have intermittent web access here in the meeting room; I am typing up notes and will post them as I have access.

I missed most of yesterday's festivities - Bob Goyetche and Mark Blevis giving a session on intro podcasting and Tod Maffin talking about how to create radio stories. Also, there was a cruise. Unfortunately I got here after the boat left because traffic was a lot worse than I even thought it would be, and it took me a good hour longer than I expected to get out of Toronto because of traffic. Fortunately I managed to catch most of the Uncle Seth show over next door from the hotel.

Thus far the message seems to be remembering the original pioneer spirit of podcasting, and to become closer as a community.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Canadian Bloggers Being Challenged

Posted over at Slaw earlier this evening: Canadian Bloggers Being Challenged - discussing a fantastic Mathew Ingram article from Saturday's Globe and Mail discussing some of the legalities about blogging in Canada.

Canadian bloggers should read the full article.

Hat tip to Judy Gombita for passing this along to me.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

The History of Facebook

I've spent the past couple of weeks getting up to speed on Facebook. I thought it would be helpful to get some background on how FB got started. I could not find anything on the website itself, so have looked elsewhere. Here are some links you may find of interest if you are also interested in this popular social networking tool:

From the Mashable article:

Originally called thefacebook, Facebook was founded by former-Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg (while at Harvard) who ran it as one of his hobby projects with some financial help from Eduardo Saverin. Within months, Facebook and its core idea spread across the dorm rooms of Harvard where it was very well received. Soon enough, it was extended to Stanford and Yale where, like Harvard, it was widely endorsed.

Before he knew it, Mark Zuckerberg was joined by two other fellow Harvard-students - Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes - to help him grow the site to the next level. Only months later when it was officially a national student network phenomenon, Zuckerberg and Moskovitz dropped out of Harvard to pursue their dreams and run Facebook full time. In August 2005, thefacebook was officially called Facebook and the domain was purchased for a reported $200,000.

From the Wikipedia entry:

On September 11, 2006, Facebook became open to all users of the Internet, prompting protest from its existing user base. Two weeks later, Facebook opened registration to anyone with a valid e-mail address.

From the MSNBC interview with Zukerberg:

Number of users is doubling every 6 months; currently they have over 25 million active users. He also states at the end of the interview that he has not yet made any money from Facebook.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Hi Folks! A bit of update with links

I'm just touching base. Life is, not surprisingly, a bit hectic at the moment.

I have been playing with all those social networking tools, getting ready for the Social Networking Tools workshop I will be running at FIS PLC on August 9th. Incidentally, the course is now half full. There is very limited space, so please sign up soon to avoid disappointment!

Like half of Toronto, I finally got onto facebook and of course have spent time connecting to others I have found. I am amazed: in a week and half, I have collected almost as many contacts as I have accumulated in LinkedIn over a year and a half. Wow. The two spaces are extremely different. Notably, facebook has a more informal feel and is more focussed on groups. There is more communication between individuals on many different levels, although a lot of it is superficial communication on both systems. Very much along the lines of "continuous partial attention."

Looking on the fully engaged attention side, last night I attended my first CaseCamp. We saw the social media/marketing case presentations for Yamaha motorcycles, BMW Canada, Specialized bicycles, and blogTO. There was a definite transportation theme there, especially considering blogTO is handing out some pretty nifty maps around the city. Incidentally, blogTO is related to Beyond Robson in Vancouver and Midnight Poutine in Montreal. There were about 200 people in the room. I ran into a number of other social media types I know from other communities (it's all one community, I think), and met a few more.

Also, I received an invite into the social networking side Melcrum's Communicators' Network which is intended for marketing and communications types. It is small but international in scope and growing.

What else have I been up to? I wrote a summary of all the various social network groups I have found that law librarians in Toronto might be interested in for the TALL Newsletter. I was asked by one of the editors to contribute something since she has found some of my blog posts about these groups interesting. It was kind of fun to actually list them all out and figure the connection between the groups, since one tends to inspire another and many people tend to move between the groups.

At work I have been thinking a lot about customer service and client relations. That is reflected in a number of links I have just published to my linkblog--check it out.

Friday, June 01, 2007