Moseley Barcamp was held at The Cross in Moseley on Sunday the 28th of July and was a free-ranging forum for those involved in Birmingham’s social media / internet “scene”. Speakers included Pete Ashton, Nick Booth, Chris Unitt and Michael Grimes to name but a few… The room contained a fair smattering of the “Brumtwitter mafia” who debated, and I imagine “tweeted”, passionately about all things “web” in Birmingham.

I spoke in my capacity as Radio Degree Leader at BCU, and reserve Kiwi for the Interactive Cultures Team. Much of the dialogue was preaching to the converted – although my admission that “I don’t blog and I don’t twitter” was followed by audible gasps of disbelief. Since the hard working guys from Rhubarb Radio were streaming live from the event it made sense to touch on the role of super-local online radio content and how it relates to the current proliferation of community radio in Birmingham. The ongoing visualisation of radio was another topic of discussion, especially the emergence of audio-slideshows. (Brummie based Ben Chesterton is an award winning proponent of the medium and last month his site attracted a healthy 14000 visits).

A common comment I hear in regards to adding pictures to radio is; “Don’t you mean TV?”… No, I don’t… Just as blogging’s not the same as sending a letter to the editor, audio slideshows are a different ballgame altogether. But I digress…

As someone who’s yet to be fully inspired by social media technologies (another gasp) it was an interesting insight into Birmingham’s rich vein of online communities. Congratulations to Shona McQuillan for putting together another thought provoking event.

PS. My thanks to talented cartoonist Alex Hughes who ignored my request to delete a few pounds from my likeness, such is his dedication to accuracy. See more of his drawing from the day at http://www.flickr.com/photos/nibster/

Birmingham Centre For Media And Cultural Research

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