Posts tagged ‘Flickr’

My Charity Connects – My Keynote Presentations & a Game of Sorts

Presenting these two talks at My Charity Connects today.

Think good thoughts! 🙂


June 8, 2009 at 4:05 am 1 comment

Bring Your Characters and Film to Life via Social Media

A huge thank you to Erica Hargreave for all her hard work on yesterday’s panel and to Maayan Cohen and Danika Dinsmore.

Among other subjects, Carol Sill & Erica addressed the role of “characters” in telling a story via social media.*  Gillian Shaw (who was also on the panel & was great) subsequently spoke to Carol & I about our thoughts on the subject.


Now I rarely follow “characters” – likely because there are few television shows and fictional characters that engage me enough to follow their “activities” online.**  And with characters where it’s not clear the “person” isn’t a person, there is a certain deception involved.

It’s a double edged sword for an artist – put forth a character that makes the fictional aspect apparent and many won’t follow an “unknown” character.  Not unless they have something really interesting to say.  Which is why I do follow Emme Rogers (as do many others): she’s fun, flirty and I think the conversation that takes place around her and her exploits brings a great sense of play to Twitter.

And characters can be very useful – and exciting – both for the artist and for the storyteller.

Allowing the character to live in other platforms before the film is released – and whilst the film is being made – gives the character a larger/broader  life – and helps with publicity.

Related stories (lets call them “pre-stories”, for this point) can engage the audience and allow them to have a larger window into/to the character.  After all, any character has a life that began before the point at which the film begins.  Consider what aspects of their life you can explore and what kind of tools you could use to tell the story (video on Youtube et al., photos on Flickr, brief but enticing spurts on Twitter etc.) What parts of their story can bring more life to the character and the film?  Where were the characters 6 months before? What interactions did they have the day before? That morning?   You can see how this can be especially useful for something like a mystery/suspense project!

And, as I said in the above article (and as I have heard Monique Trottier mention with regards to books), there is no reason the end of the film needs to be the end.  I can tell you that there have been several films (Red Road, Sideways) where I was consumed with reading more about the film after seeing it. Or where I’ve seen a film numerous times. So desperate was I to stay “engaged”.

For the artist,  this process, while time-consuming, is in another sense, almost effortless.  After all, as a writer and actor, I always created a background for the characters etc. And, much as I’d love to pretend I’m special, this is pretty standard practice.  So such items can be extremely creative and satisfying – as well as a boon when it comes to building an audience.

And now, with all the tools available through social media, there’s the opportunity to give the audience more, to keep them engaged. Your creativity is the limit when it comes to where your story begins – or ends.


*We managed to talk about several social media topics, but there were some key things we didn’t have the time to address, so I hope we do have the opportunity to do a part 2 with this group so we can take our discussion to the next level.  Oh & Erica and Leah Nelson (who was helping out by being Linkgrrl09 and finding the sites we all talked about) decided to play this video while I spoke, to help er, demonstrate my expertise…

**However, get any or all the characters from The Office on Twitter and I will press “follow” until I develop carpal tunnel.

***I’ll be looking into the use of Alternate Reality Games for independent film projects in a future post.

Want more articles about artists? I have a whole series here.



Bring Your Characters and Film to Life Using Social Media” by Monica Hamburg

March 5, 2009 at 9:52 pm 13 comments

One-track Mind

I’m beginning to get something of a one-track mind myself.

It’s all about contests, though, so not nearly as salacious as it could be…

Bear Your Soul Contest - Screenshot So, first of all, I’ve been running the “Bear Your Soul” contest on Flickr.  It’s been a great deal of fun – and also impressive to see the 230 beautiful photos submitted.  We have decided on the finalists now, so please go and vote for your favorite on the Save the Great Bear site.  (You can also sign the online petition at

chips-not-dead-yet-memelabs-contest Then my friends at MemeLabs told me about their cool contest for Vancouverites. Background: Chip’s Not Dead Yet Memorial Mile is a one-mile uphill race run in themed waves. The second annual Chip’s Not Dead Yet Memorial Mile is scheduled to take place on June 20, 2009, with all proceeds going to the BC Children’s Hospital. Contest: “[T]his time, memelabs and Chip’s Not Dead Yet want Vancouver to come up with its own idea for a theme wave. Got an urge to run like a cowboy? To join a swiftly moving team of Elvises? To canter in a herd of centaurs? Pull your camera out, and make it happen! We’re holding a video contest—best theme wave idea wins.” You could win $1000, or a monthly prize pack. Enter, find out more information about the contest and/or the Chip’s Not Dead Yet Memorial Mile on

The Mortgage Dude:  I’ll soon be running  a contest (with help from Strutta) for my wonderful partner (warning, autoplay company video on his page 🙂 ) I might be combining this with a whole social media campaign for him (which should tie in nicely with the Media2o prize we recently won).  Thanks again, Media2o!)  Of course, this is a man who will often cut me off when I try to explain what Twitter or blogging is because he thinks he can explain the tremendous business appeal more succinctly, but then never uses it himself.  (Love you, hon!)  So I may have my work cut out for me.

I have also been working on some promotion for the DreamBank and Jiibe contests (as per my previous post). Most of the other contests I mentioned in that post are also still running (for the record, the open ones are Give a Better Life ,John Chow and, Jiibe Connection and The DreamBank Giving and Getting Survey.)

So now perhaps you understand why, amongst all my other bizarre dreams (like the one about my father riding a Kangaroo through Washington, D.C.), I now even have ones about contests…  Perhaps I’ll try hypnosis over the holidays.

December 19, 2008 at 3:13 pm 2 comments

‘Tis the Season for Contests

There sure are a few great contests running right now! Check out the following:

Give a Better Life – You watch the video for the eligible charities – then vote for the one you want to win. The winning charity gets $5,000 and you are eligible to win a coffeemaker (I imagine for the long nights you’ll be spending deciding which charity you think is most deserving – thanks Strutta 😉

Netchick’s $500 Cash-giveaway – Tanya (aka Netchick) is drawing for a $500 prize. Each time you pledge $25 to support her for the Team Diabetes half marathon, you are get one entry for the draw.

Jiibe Connection Contest: Help Claire Find the Workplace She’ll Love. You match a job seeker “Claire” with her ideal workplace (based on the quick videos on the site). One voter will win an Ipod Nano. (Capulet + Strutta)

$6,000 Contest from John Chow and – To enter the contest, you write a blog post review of (See John’s site for full directions.) The winner will receive $5,000 for the charity of their choice plus an additional $1,000 so they can buy something nice for the holidays.

DreamBank Giving and Getting SurveyDreamBank is running a quick (three-minute survey) about how you feel about giving and getting gifts. Complete the survey and you can win an iPod Nano or the equivalent contribution to their DreamBank dream. (Capulet)

Bear Your SoulForestEthics, Greenpeace and Sierra Club are asking you to “Bear Your Soul”. Sound scary? It isn’t. Basically, you just submit a photo to the Flickr group which: tells the BC Government why it needs to honour its agreement to conserve the Great Bear Rainforest. (You could submit a picture of yourself holding a sign, frolicking in the woods (er, tastefully), or one that shows the beauty of the wilderness. ) Prizes include a Grizzle Bear tour and $50 Itunes cards. (Individuals can also send a message to the government of British Columbia, urging them to keep their promise to concerned citizens in BC and around the world by signing an online petition.) (Capulet)

(Full disclosure: the last 3 are companies/contests I have some involvement with (am working with and/or to promote), so there’s a little self-interest there. But only a little.)

Are there any I’ve missed? (Likely!) Comment and tell me what they are.

November 25, 2008 at 5:25 pm 4 comments

Social Media & NonProfits: Make it Easy for Your Fans to Help You

The internet encourages people to pass on music and other stuff they are passionate about.

Causes are a perfect fit!

Here are just a few things Nonprofits and their Fans can do to encourage their message to spread:

— Nonprofits: What can you do? —

  • Make it cool.
    “Nothing but Nets” succeeded, in part, because it simplified a big issue: buy a child a $10 net, help prevent the spread of malaria. An easy message to absorb and pass on. And $10 is an amount most everyone can give. Awesome.. (See New York Times, “A $10 Mosquito Net Is Making Charity Cool“)
  • Fun it up.
    Games can go a long way to educating people in an interactive way. (e.g. Games for Change, World Without Oil)
  • Tell a story.
    Numbers are dull and impersonal. People relate to stories. Who is affected? What is happening? (See “Social networking sites help nonprofit tell stories, raise awareness“)
  • Don’t be cruel.
    Don’t play “find the donate button” with potential donors.
    Your request for donations, if important to your cause, should be clear, prominent and distinctive. (See “I Can’t Even Give It Away (Or “A Brief Review of Donate Buttons on Non-Profit Websites”)
  • Blog, Blog and Blog Again.
    Talking and listening is critical in the Web 2.0 sphere. Begin the conversation and encourage interaction. (See “5 Tips to Start a Nonprofit Blog”)
  • Tag – We’re All It.
    Encourage people to use tags. Basically, “think of a tag as a simple category name. People can categorize their posts, photos and videos with any tag that makes sense.” Using the same tag means related information can be found with ease – on, Flickr, Youtube etc . – as well as aggregated into feeds. (See “Make your nonprofit more effective with RSS aggregation”)

—Supporters: What Can You Do?—

(Oh & take a look at some of the tips given to nonprofits above. They apply to you as well.)

Make use of social media to help you mobilize, inform and educate and get your message around.

YOU have the message and the tools.

Now go spread the word.


Bibliography and Further Resources:

& Thanks to Joe Solomon and Elijah van der Giessen for your wonderful help!


Oh & if the video below doesn’t demonstrate a great way a message can be conveyed – I don’t know what does.

Presenting…. Internet Celebrities in a music video supporting Net Neutrality:

add to :: Add to Blinkslist :: add to furl :: Digg it :: add to ma.gnolia :: Stumble It! :: add to simpy :: seed the vine :: :: :: TailRank

My Related Posts:

Flickr and Nonprofits

YouTube and Nonprofits

Facebook, MySpace and Nonprofits

Twitter and Nonprofits

More NonProfit Social Media Ideas

June 5, 2008 at 12:16 am 14 comments

Monica Hamburg – Who Am I?

Good question (I wonder this all the time).
Linkedin profile is: here.
Find out more here.

Our Twitter for Business Workshops

I also offer Social Media Audits and a Twitter for Business Workshop (along with other services). For more information click here.

"The Twitter workshop opened my eyes to a whole new way of doing business. Terrific advice on how to best use twitter to create new business."

- Steve Rosenberg , Founder and Instructor, Pull Focus Films

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