We have spent a lot of our time of late tinkering with 2.0 tools.
Much of our time is spent tearing out of whole chunks of WBUR and scattering the bits before the winds of Web 2.0: Dollops of local news here, a generous slab of On Point there. Snippets of audio, video, and photographs sprinkled here, there, everywhere.
And then there is all that Tweeting.
The standard-issue response is chock-full of the obligatory “leveraging social networks” … “community”… “distributed architecture” … “relevance” … “wisdom of the crowds” … and of course the recently minted “engagement and authenticity.” Buzzwords that conveniently buy us new media folks a reprieve, while (in my case at least) conceal nagging self-doubt. I often wonder if all this tinkering is simply an exercise in self-indulgence. That this 2.0 stuff is all for naught.
My anxiety is born from the not all that unreasonable assumption that most WBUR listeners—the folks who cut the checks—can’t stomach all this disintermediation. They want their public radio served up whole. Radio … not pictures. More Fresh Air than fresh Tweets. The functionally anachronistic “driveway moments” still carry more currency for them than a podcast.
While it is not clear how I might reach these listeners, what is crystalline is my indebtedness to all those who have indulged in WBUR’s social media experimentation. Thank you. I believe you folks will be major arbiters of the station’s future.
And thank you, Will Roselip. While I vacation in Cooper country, seeking epiphanic visions to assuage my misgivings, On Point’s resident intern will offer fresh perspectives and insights on WBUR and Web 2.0 from a rather unique vantage point.
See you all on the other side of the Fourth.