Science & Nature Post
Written by Nathan Mattise
To all the local naysayers of blogging, Twitter, Foursquare, Facebook, Tumblr and the vast and various other forms of social media… you know you’re in absolutely the wrong place, right?
Today’s news about Syracuse University being one of the best (most influential) collegiate Twitter accounts is no surprise. Syracuse, N.Y. in general embraces social medias like very few other areas. We have massive Foursquare initiatives (not to mention the founder is an alum). Tweet-ups in the area seem to have as much success as SU Football watch parties (and they had more pre-2010 season). We even have social media professors who create Tumblrs to discuss ‘net known case studies involving local businesses‘ use of social media. Wrap your mind around that.
I recently read about the first annual Austin Blogger Awards and thought to myself, “Syracuse doesn’t have this yet?!?” It was initiative set up by a local blog/’zine to create a reader-vote supported Best-Of style contest focused on local social media (think the annual New Times polls). Nominees were accepted through an e-mail submission process, judged by a set of criteria determined by the host publication and then five finalists in each category were left to duke it out by online voting. It all wrapped up with a related event, they called it a “bleet-up,” where the winners were announced and more in-person networking could happen within the city’s larger social network.
Their list of categories was extensive (and expanded past just blogging to include things like Best Tumblr, Best Company and Best Twitter) but even if you couldn’t specialize the Syracuse scene to that extent, there are certainly plenty of quality local blogs covering broad topics like food, music, news and (especially) media. If you added specialized categories for the other social medias in town, you could easily fill ten slots or more.
Social media is successful based on the ideas of interaction and expanding your own network to become exposed to new ideas and perspectives (and for the pessimist, it’s based on narcissim and self-promotion… also easily adaptable to a social awards ceremony). An event like this could be a way for those engaging in local social media to ensure they aren’t missing great resources in their own neighborhood. At the very least, certainly seems like an opportunity for a local media outlet to hang their hat on a signature event (here’s looking at you New Times, NewsHouse and/or Syracuse.com).
(Links today from Klout, Newhouse School, imjustsharing.com and many of the blogs/Twitter accounts and Tumblrs mentioned directly above)