social media

New Publication: Assessing Barcamps

Screenshot from the paper.

A Barcamp is a place for low-threshold exchange of concepts and ideas.

Since 2008, I have been organizing a number of unfonferences, so-called Barcamps in Austria: At these types of events people gather and agree upon the schedule at the beginning. Everybody is expected to contribute to the unconference, either by presenting, by leading a discussion or by documenting the event. Heinz and I co-organized the first camp on political online communication in the German-speaking area. This year, I will organize a Barcamp at the European Forum Alpbach.

As Barcamps differ substantially from regular conferences, we at Wissensmanagementforum Graz decided to investigate this further and to conduct a research project about the Barcamp in Graz. This conference paper to be presented at I-KNOW in September is the first result of our research. 

You can download the full paper in the publication section. Here is the abstract:

Dennerlein, S., Gutounig, R., Kraker, P., Kaiser, R., Rauter, R., & Ausserhofer, J. (2013, forthcoming). Assessing Barcamps: Incentives for Participation in Ad-Hoc Conferences and the Role of Social Media. Presented at the I-KNOW 13th International Conference on Knowledge Management and Knowledge Technologies, Graz.

Barcamps are conferences without predefined content, often referred to as ad-hoc conferences or unconferences. Therefore, the outcomes of a barcamp are largely unknown before the event. This raises the question of participants’ motivations to attend and contribute. To answer this question, we conducted an exploratory empirical study at the Barcamp Graz 2012. We applied a mixed-method approach: first we used a sociodemographic questionnaire (n=99) which allowed us to characterize the ’typical barcamper’. Second, we conducted qualitative interviews (n=10) to get a deeper understanding of the participants’ motivations to attend, ex- pectations and the use of social media in that context. We identified three concepts, which could be deducted from the interviews: people, format and topics. We found that the motivation to attend and even a common identity is quite strongly based on these three factors. Furthermore, the results indicate that participants share a set of activities and methods by following the barcamp’s inherent rules and make extensive use of social media.

I would like to thank my co-authors, especially Sebastian Dennerlein and Robert Gutounig who took the lead in the publication, as well as all Barcamp participants who patiently answered our questions.

How to Verify Information on Social Media

On Twitter every now and then a celebrity is declared dead. Very often this is just a hoax: For instance, Eddie Murphy and Denzel Washington have had a mysterious deadly snowboarding accident. And when North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il died, the rapper Lil Kim became a trending topic as many hip hop fans simply got confused due their similar names.

Rumours, hoaxes and wrong information have been everyday phenomena in the news business. With social media some things have changed: User generated content has become a new source for journalists and now news spread and modify faster than ever. Journalists have to adapt to these new conditions. Last week I gave a lecture to first-year journalism students in Oslo. In the talk I put the phenomenon of rumours in social media into context and gave the students some tips on how to use the means they have available to check facts. The last slide contains links to a excellent blog posts and papers that contribute to the topic. Elsebeth Frey at Oslo and Akershus University 
College of Applied Sciences was so kind to give me the opportunity to speak in her class about fact checking.

And these are the slides:

New-Media-Vorträge im Oktober – Einige Empfehlungen

Noch nie habe ich in Wien solch eine Dichte an Veranstaltungen gesehen, die sich mit Internetforschung, Onlinejournalismus und Digitalisierung auseinandersetzen.

Einige Empfehlungen für die nächsten Tage mit grandiosen Vortragenden:

Europeana Tech Conference

  • Dienstag, 4. Oktober & Mittwoch, 5. Oktober, 09:00 – 17:00 Uhr, Österreichische Nationalbibliothek
  • Schwerpunkte: Open Data, Open Source
  • Anmeldung nicht mehr möglich

Semantic Web Company’s Open House with Evan Sandhaus (New York Times), Andreas Gebhard (Getty Images), Stuart Myles (Associated Press)

  • Mittwoch, 5. Oktober, 18:30 Uhr, Semantic Web Company
  • Schwerpunkte: Semantic Web, Data Retrieval, Journalism
  • Eintritt frei, Anmeldung erforderlich

Symposium Medienpolitik und Recht. Wikileaks: Neue Regeln für neue Formen der Kommunikation?

  • Donnerstag, 6. Oktober, 16:3019:00 Uhr, Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften
  • Schwerpunkte: Internetregulierung, IT-Law
  • Eintritt frei

Auftaktveranstaltung zum Start des Master Programms International Media Innovation Management mit Bill Horn (New York Times), Bill Mitchell (Poynter Institute, Florida): Media Innovation: How to Shape the Future

  • Montag, 10. Oktober, 18:00 Uhr, Marx Palast, Media Quarter Marx
  • Eintritt frei, Anmeldung erforderlich

Gruppe Internetforschung: Workshop InterRecht / UrheberNet – Rechtliche Rahmenbedingungen von Online-Publikationen und Möglichkeiten von Open Access in der Wissenschaft

  • Dienstag, 11. Oktober, 17:00 Uhr, Raum D, Museumsquartier
  • Schwerpunkt: Wissenschaftliches Publizieren, IT-Law
  • Eintritt frei, keine Anmeldung erforderlich

Auftaktveranstaltung zum Start des Master Programms International Media Innovation Management mit Bill Horn (New York Times), Bill Mitchell (Poynter Institute, Florida): Media Innovation: How to Shape the Future
Monday, October 10th, 2011,6 p.m. at Marx Palast at Media Quarter Marx
Montag, 10. Oktober, 18:00 Uhr, Marx Palast, Media Quarter Marx

Eintritt frei, Anmeldung erforderlich

Tim Berners-Lee: World Wide Web: Who Rules the Internet Society?

  • Dienstag, 11. Oktober, 18:30 Uhr, Spanische Hofreitschule
  • Schwerpunkt: Internet Governance
  • Einladung erforderlich, Karten-Verlosung via Twitter-Wettbewerb

Nicht in Wien, jedoch auch Hinweisenswertes passiert in Graz am Studiengang für Journalismus und PR, an dem ich arbeite:

Karim El-Gawhary

  • Mittwoch, 12. Oktober, 13:00-14:30 Uhr, Studiengang für Journalismus und PR, FH JOANNEUM
  • Schwerpunkt: Arabischer Frühling, Journalismus als Korrespondent
  • Eintritt frei, keine Anmeldung erforderlich

Schon vorüber:

Hedy Lamarr Lecture mit Philip Meyer: Precision Journalism v. Narrative Journalism: Toward a Unified Field Theory

  • Montag, 3. Oktober, 18:15 Uhr, Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften
  • Schwerpunkte: Data Journalism, New Media

Um auf dem Laufenden zu bleiben, empfiehlt es sich auch, den Feed von zu abonnieren.