May 8, 2009

Twitter for the economic soul?

Twitter for the economic soul? on WPA I've been looking back on some of my past project collecting stories on the internet. They all have a much smaller focus than this, but I have found it surprising how much interest they continue to gather. If one was to build a sharing site for WPA 2.0 what would the question posed be? My first though is "In this time of economic fear and change, what has been your glimmering star of hope". I'd love to hear others ideas of a compelling question. The content sharing sites gather tends to be mostly short sound bite length reactions, which is the predominant content length for the web. However about 2% is quite full, epic, and interesting. I find that these very interesting and expansive submission do not feel like they belong on the "collection site" as they are stories of there own. But in the projects I've done there has been no where for those stories to grow. That is I think the nature of a collection site. Primarily they provides catharsis of sharing, but a small number of items shared have a great value. The sites I've worked on (Turns, and Confess among others) are anonymous, and the contribution is limited to a one time offering of a single medium (text, image, sound) so unto themselves they don't match up with the idea of creating a supply of material for documentary use, nor a real archivist level collection of stories. However a quick fix, share your own story site with a bit of a fun face might still be a valid way to find your way to those few really interesting stories begging to be told. The majority of work is in creating the engaging and safe form to submit the story, and in marketing the site to find users. (as art pieces, Museums have been our best marketing, but Library are a close second, and might fit the WPA 2.0 ethos) Do you have any opinions as to weather a playful quick response survey would be of any use toward the overall objectives?

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