Social Media Week DC is going to be a busy conference for me this year. If you haven’t heard about it yet, the week-long festival starts 12 days from now. The week will feature speakers, panels, workshops, events, and parties all across the District celebrating tech and social media in the Nation’s Capital, including a special edition of the DC Tech Meetup. I’m going to be moderating four panels and participating on a fifth. I’m excited about all five and I hope that readers, friends, colleagues and the DC community comes to one or more of them.
If the panels that I’m involved in aren’t your cup of tea, you might find something more to your taste in the full SMW DC schedule.
Following is the breakdown of the five panels that I’ll be participating in this year:
- Creating & Managing High Quality Online Conversations
Location: Science Club
Date: Monday, February 13 at 6:30 PM – 8:00 PM | Add to Google Calendar | Add to iCal
Description: Discussions in online comment sections and social media can be tricky to manage. Some sites are bogged down full of low quality comments, spam, and more. How do we create high quality online discussions? How do we filter out the noise – the spam, the solicitation, harassment, and hateful speech that often becomes part of any online discussion? We will discuss examples of those that have done it well, and some that haven’t. We will also speak to individuals who have dealt with harassment and negativity online and learn how they fought back and still used social media tools for constructive discussion and engagement.
- Politics and technology: the media’s role in the changing landscape: ASK QUESTIONS
Location: Powell Tate
Date: Tuesday, February 14 at 10:00 AM | Add to Google Calendar | Add to iCal
Description: Digital platforms have changed the media landscape forever, but how has it changed the way the media covers politics? We’ll ask a panel of reporters from Gannett, National Journal, ABC News and Politico as they discuss 2012 election coverage.
- Social Politics: How Technology Has Helped Campaigns: ASK QUESTIONS
Location: Powell Tate
Date: Tuesday, February 14 at 2:00 PM | Add to Google Calendar | Add to iCal
Description: The social media landscape has changed drastically since 2008. We’ll hear directly from panelists from Google, Twitter and Facebook as they delve into the tools and innovations that candidates and campaigns have utilized as the 2012 campaign heats up.
- Public Diplomacy in the Age of Social Media
Location: New America Foundation
Date: Thursday, February 16 at 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM | Add to Google Calendar| Add to iCal
Description: How does social media change how statecraft is practiced in the 21st century? Who’s participating and why? What have been some lessons learned from the pioneers who have logged on to listen and engage? Three representatives from the U.S. Department of State will share case studies and professional experiences gleaned directly from the virtual trenches.
- Social Media, Government and 21st Century eDemocracy
Location: The U.S. National Archives
Date: Friday, February 17 at 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM | Add to Calendar | Add to iCal
Description: While Sean Parker may predict that social media will determine the outcome of the 2012 election, governance is another story entirely. Meaningful use of social media by Congress remains challenged by a number of factors, not least an online identity ecosystem that has not provided Congress with ideal means to identify constituents online. The reality remains that when it comes to which channels influence Congress, in-person visits and individual emails or phone calls are far more influential with congressional staffers.“People think it’s always an argument in Washington,” said Matt Lira, Director of Digital for the House Majority Leader. “Social media can change that. We’re seeing a decentralization of audiences that is built around their interests rather than the interests of editors. Imagine when you start streaming every hearing and making information more digestible. All of a sudden, you get these niche audiences. They’re not enough to sustain a network, but you’ll get enough of an audience to sustain the topic. I believe we will have a more engaged citizenry as a result.”
This conversation with Lira (and other special guests, as scheduling allows) will explore more than how social media is changing politics in Washington. We’ll look at its potential to can help elected officials and other public servants make better policy decisions.
If you’re not in DC, check to see if there is a Social Media Week event near you: in 2012, the conference now include New York, San Francisco, Miami, Toronto, London, Paris, Rome, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Singapore, and Sao Paulo.