JiscMail Logo
Email discussion lists for the UK Education and Research communities

Help for MCG Archives


MCG Archives

MCG Archives


MCG@JISCMAIL.AC.UK


View:

Message:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Topic:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Author:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

Font:

Proportional Font

LISTSERV Archives

LISTSERV Archives

MCG Home

MCG Home

MCG  July 2007

MCG July 2007

Options

Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Log In

Log In

Get Password

Get Password

Subject:

Re: Facebook

From:

Michael White <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Museums Computer Group <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 3 Jul 2007 11:20:08 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (1 lines)

Hi everyone, 
 
This has been an interesting thread, and timely for my new media shop over 
here in Parks Canada.  Our team is also looking at ways that we could 
potentially use social media website presences to reach more people with 
messages about Canada’s national heritage places. 
 
As such I’ve been using Facebook and other sites a fair bit, and doing a 
lot of research on their demographics and implications associated with 
using them - important considerations for us as we are a federal agency and 
have many policies and rules to adhere to. 
 
I noticed that with respect to our national parks and historic sites, there 
are several groups created by individuals about specific national parks, 
almost like national park fan clubs, and they have grown to have around 200 
members or so.  Generally, most groups for smaller institutions (such as a 
park or a museum) will not get the large group sizes we see for the fun 
viral groups and competitions on Facebook- unless the museum is 
particularly engaging. 
 
For the most part, the dialogue on the groups was pretty basic with very 
little that is meaningful to our mandate.  For example, discussions about 
someone having a drinking party in a campground is not really the kind of 
engagement we are looking to have with the public, nor are lists of the 
best places to make out on the lake.  However I have noticed, especially 
now that we are in summer, that people who are interested in these parks 
but not too familiar with them have begun discussion threads about 
potential canoe and hiking routes and others have posted threads looking 
back at how the park has changed over time.  The dialogue is getting more 
interesting from a public engagement perspective simply because its 
spreading the word virally about why our sites are worth protecting and 
experiencing- and without any help from us, which makes it more valid I 
think in the end.  In a sense the Facebook groups are providing a bit of a 
comfort zone for urban folk wanting to leave the city behind and explore 
nature- but at the same time being a bit intimidated by it and looking for 
advice from other users of the park. 
 
I also started a very unofficial group on my own called “I Love Canada’s 
National Parks” which is not sponsored by my work, but was created just as 
a personal experiment to see what people would do on it and who might join. 
As with many very specific interest groups, membership hasn’t grown 
rapidly, but I was surprised to find close to 100 members that last time I 
checked). But, to my surprise, the majority of members are actually former 
Parks Canada employees, and I now receive messages asking if it’s alright 
for non Parks Canada people to join.  As such, it so far hasn’t reached the 
audience I was really expecting, although that is changing.  I tried 
seeding the site with a few discussion threads, but like most groups on 
Facebook, people join but rarely more than a couple leaders get engaged to 
any extent.  It has however become a place where people share their photos- 
this seems to be what people like to do best in some of these groups. 
 
Interestingly, aside from current and alumni staff, most non staff members 
are not of the “kids” demographic some people mentioned in the thread so 
far- they are more likely to be in their late 20s and 30s, which is the way 
Facebook demographics are now seeming to shift since they opened up 
membership access to everyone, not just university students.  I suspect 
that within the year Facebook will become much more like Myspace, where the 
largest single age demographic group changed from under 20 to between 25 
and 35 over the past year. 
 
On a final note, I am looking into institutions’ experiences using social 
media sites as part of a report on the policy implications and important 
considerations associated with using social media for my management, so if 
anyone has any interesting insights they wish to discuss off-thread, then 
please drop me a note. My email is [log in to unmask] (or alternately, 
I guess you can just drop me a message from my I love Canada’s National 
Parks group on Facebook- I’m the administrator!) 
 
We just had one Facebook experiment here in Canada go in a direction they 
weren’t anticipating, with our public broadcasting corporation, the CBC. 
The details are in the article link below if anyone is interested and it 
underlines how any forays into social media have to be considered 
carefully: 
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070628.wgtcbc28/BNStory/Technology/home 
 
Thanks for the interesting discussion, 
 
Mike White 
 
 
 
Michael White 
Analyste de la recherche – Nouveaux médias | Research Analyst - New Media 
[log in to unmask] | Tél./Tel. (819) 997-6647 | Téléc./Fax (819) 
997-5974 
 
Stratégies concernant les nouveaux médias et investissement | New Media 
Strategies and Investment 
...................................................................................................................................... 
 
Direction, Information et éducation du public 
Direction générale des relations externes et expériences des visiteurs 
Parcs Canada 
 
Public Information and Education Branch 
External Relations and Visitor Experience Directorate 
Parks Canada 
...................................................................................................................................... 
 
25 rue Eddy (25-6-T) | 25 Eddy Street (25-6-T) 
Gatineau, Québec 
K1A 0M5 
 
 

Top of Message | Previous Page | Permalink

JiscMail Tools


RSS Feeds and Sharing


Advanced Options


Archives

November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
2006
2005
2004
2003
2002
2001
2000
1999
1998


WWW.JISCMAIL.AC.UK

Secured by F-Secure Anti-Virus CataList Email List Search Powered by the LISTSERV Email List Manager