Monthly Archives: June 2009

It’s here! Social Media Club Charleston launches tonight

[gmap zoom=15]After a few months of hard work and preparation, Charleston will officially launch its chapter of Social Media Club tonight with a panel of journalists asking them how social media’s transformed how they engage with their audience. Here’s the event page for tonight’s panel on Facebook.

It’s very befitting that the kickoff event for Charleston’s Social Media Club is a panel with local media professionals. After all, the roots of our blogging community stem from local media’s efforts to reach out to local bloggers all the way back in April of 2006. The founders of that effort, Dan and Janet (Edens) Conover, will be on the panel, along with Ken Hawkins from TheDigitel.com, Andy Owens of the Charleston Regional Business Journal, and Raymond Owens, a producer at WCBD Channel 2 who was well ahead of the curve by being the first broadcast media presence in Charleston to do newsgathering via Twitter (well before WCBD’s station-wide push into social media earlier this year).

Social Media Club Charleston has been in the works for a few months now. Jeff Webster and Nick Tompkins kicked off the effort just before the 2008 holiday season. Heather Solos of Lowcountry Bloggers and Home-Ec 101, local social media/PR pro Lyn Mettler, Blackbaud’s Chad Norman, and yours truly rounded out the initial leadership group and has been laying the groundwork for this launch over the last few months. Thanks to help from The Graduate School of the College of Charleston, we’re able to put on this event for you. It’s stating the obvious to say we’re ridiculously excited to bring SMC to Charleston.

Between the rockstar panel and the wonderful opportunity to meet lots of new people, tonight should be a lot of fun. Tweet your thoughts using the #smcchs hashtag, and we hope to see you there. The event will be at Maybank Hall on the College of Charleston campus at 6:30. (Here’s a map to Maybank Hall.)

Going (Word)Camping

I’ll be right smack in the middle of the Research Triangle this weekend for WordCampRDU 2009, one of many WordCamp events dedicated to helping users of all skills levels, from beginner to expert, hone their skills and learn more about the ever-expanding world of WordPress.

I made a decision over three years ago to use WordPress for the reincarnation of this blog, and I don’t think I’ve ever been happier with a piece of software. The development ecosystem is thriving and Automattic, the parent company that governs the WordPress universe, have consistently made smart acquisitions (Gravatar, Intense Debate) that have further helped cultivate this healthy growth in WordPress as a platform. The ecosystem is so good, in fact, that it changed this developer’s behavior from one of “come hell or high water, I’m coding this myself” to that of embracing the community and taking advantage of the collective intelligence of a lot of folks who are even more enthusiastic about WordPress than I am. Here’s hoping that at WordCamp I can come away with the skills to start giving back, because my debts are great.

The keynote speaker is none other than Matt Mullenweg himself, founder of the project and Automattic. It’ll be quite a good time — if you’re there, I’d love to meet up!

Recapping last night’s severe weather

I’ve done up a quick recap of last night’s severe weather over on the Charleston Weather blog. The storm report map was sourced from the Iowa Environmental Mesonet website. They’re very progressive (geotagged storm reports using the Google Maps API, a Jabber room that relays products directly from LDM, etc.) and ridiculously useful in a pinch. I like ’em a lot, and might need them again tomorrow.

Nice press for @chswx in Charleston City Paper

Charleston City Paper’s Lindsay Frost has a cool Twitter piece (jokingly subtitled “Obligatory ‘Hey, Ever Heard of Twitter?’ News Story”) which has a cool mention of the @chswx weather account. It’s really fun to see @chswx get some traction as I think we do some pretty cool stuff with it, especially as hurricane season gets into gear. Also featured in the article are Brian McGee, chair of the College of Charleston Department of Communication; Lyn Mettler, president of Step Ahead Web Strategies; and Andrew Edahl, a College of Charleston student.

Improving commenting, etc.

From the Department of Overkill: I’ve been tangling with Facebook Connect for WordPress tonight and working out a lot of kinks. I’m also trying to get Facebook and Twitter’s OAuth to coexist. What does this mean? In that once every three months I generate good discussion from a blog post here, you can use your Twitter and Facebook accounts to comment. ;) Once I’ve completed my experiments I’ll be sure to document the process at length.

The city of North Charleston on Brightkite

At first glance, a city joining Brightkite seems a little strange — where would a city check in if it doesn’t move? However, North Charleston’s Brightkite account could be brilliant. It could be used to check in at events at their exact locations, post pictures of those events, and create quite a marketing stream for the city. Right now it’s just notes being posted at City Hall, but I could see this being much, much more. This is the first municipal usage of Brightkite I’ve seen; I’ll be interested to find more. (You can also find North Charleston on Twitter.)