SARAH HROMACK Whitney Museum, USA JOHN STACK Tate, UK
RICH BARRETT-SMALL Tate, UK SEB CHAN Cooper-Hewitt, USA AARON STRAUP COPE Cooper-Hewitt, USA KAJSA HARTIG Nordiska Museet, Sweden SHARNA JACKSON Tate, UK CAROLYN ROYSTON Imperial War Museums, UK KATIE SHELLY Cooper-Hewitt, USA MICAH WALTER Cooper-Hewitt, USA
SEB CHAN (@SEBCHAN) Institutional wabi-sabi. (Or celebrating the spanking cat.) === In recent work my team has been thinking a lot about how to deal with the inherent challenge of incomplete research records, poorly digitised objects, variable knowledge, and the reality of questionable acquisitions that would not meet contemporary ‘strategic collecting’ standards. One common institutional response is to pretend these realities don’t exist--or if they are too hard to hide, then the best course of action is not draw any attention to them. But an alternative approach is to celebrate these inconsistencies and allow the institution to revel in its messiness, and, importantly, its humanness. Or as my colleague Aaron Cope likes to say, “it's made of people!”. The Japanese concept of wabi-sabi is perhaps applicable. Wabi-sabi is a challenging concept for Westerners raised on a diet of Modernism. It celebrates impermanence, imperfection, and incompleteness. It celebrates the small and the intimate. It is the rough hewn bowl, not angular refined box. Importantly, though, it is not an excuse for incompetence. Consider how your museum could be ‘a bowl’, rather than ‘a box’. A tumble of objects rather than a grid. What might this mean for your institutional design aesthetic? Is it a return to the densely cluttered cabinet of curiosities? The dusty attic or antique shop? What might that mean for the ‘approachability’ of your institution? And what of our long desired aim of serendipitous discovery in our online databases?
Figure of a cat and kitten Probably Austria, late 19th–early 20th century Painted brass, H x W x D: 6.8 x 3.8 x 3.6 cm. (211/16 x 1 1/2 x 1 7/16 in.) Gift of Anonymous Donor, 1949-49-35. http://cprhw.tt/o/2CdrM/ Photo credit: Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution, Gift of Anonymous Donor, 1949-49-35, Photo by Matt Flynn.
SHARNA JACKSON (@SHARNAJACKSON) The (Sharna) Jackson 5: On Kids' Digital Strategy === I’m Sharna Jackson, inaugural HBIC of Tate Kids. Here’s five things I’ve learned over the past five years creating digital content for kids.
ONE: KNOW YOUR PEOPLE Get an understanding of who they are, while recognising they’re not a homogenous mass. How old are they? What are they watching? What’s happening culturally--is Justin Bieber over? Is there really a Joe Jonas sex tape? What does this mean for you? What do they expect from your institution? What conventions do they expect from similar content? Talk to them--find out what they want--but also Listen To Your Heart, as Roxette once sang. Sometimes they don’t know what they want, and you know best. Kids be fickle. Define your audience and keep them in mind AT ALL TIMES. Yes, that sounds obvious but it’s easy to forget if your project has a million internal and external stakeholders (which they all do). ‘Finished’ (it’s never finished, though, is it? Let’s be real) content can be very different from initial concepts but if your audience’s needs and requirements are kept at the forefront of your thinking, and fed into your decisions then you’re good.
If you remember one thing, let it be this--Kids aren’t tools. Don’t patronise them, they’re very media literate, and savvier than you might give them credit for. In real terms, this means avoiding any slang, limiting the use of cool, refraining from using emoticons, being wary of over punctuating!!!!!!!!!!! (it’s beyond desperate), definitely no Comic Sans, no to lazy design choices, sparing use of primary colours and absolutely no swapping s’s for z’s. Do not try to be “down” with them. It’s feeble. You know it. They know it, and they will judge you.
TWO: KNOW YOURSELF What kind of institution are you? What are your values? What does that mean for your output? Your positioning will guide what kind of content it makes sense for you to produce. At Tate we, according to our brand guidelines, “invite everyone to look again, think again and join in”. Tate Modern, in particular, is seen as a bit trendy so there was scope for Tate Kids to develop an ethos around irreverence, iconoclasm, whilst being smart and fun. These values may not be the same for you, but that doesn’t mean you can’t create relevant and appropriate content.
THREE: MAKE FRIENDS (WITH BENEFITS) Whether you’re an art-museum-juggernaut or a small gallery with three members of staff, getting kids to come to your content is really hard, so, where possible, take your content to where they are by forging relationships with external partners. They have the audience, we have the cultural kudos. Tate Kids has teamed up with the likes of the BBC, Moshi Monsters, Miniclip, The Royal Ballet School in the past. These partnerships didn’t cost any money, so it’s always worth approaching outsiders and asking the questions, as there may be a good brand fit or an opportunity may arise that suits everyone. When working with digital agencies, let your agency work with you, not for you. Collaborate. Don’t let the power of being a client go to your head. Your strengths lie in the knowledge of your audience, your brand and its assets. Their strength is in, you hope, the creative and technological development of your content. They probably have more experience in making games and toys then you; so listen to them. To this end, I tend to create quite loose and open project briefs. I have a good idea of what I want to create and when it needs to be live, but let the agency fill in the blanks. Give them some breathing room to do what they do best. These are all external relationships. Internal collaboration can be way more difficult. Working internally at Tate has been described like trying to turn a whale--the myriad of different departments with different agendas and different approaches. It’s stressful. Don’t let this happen to you, be the peacemaker. Do it for the kids.
FOUR: PRESS PLAY Without a doubt, the most popular section on Tate Kids is the games. I bloody love games and toys--and just to note, I make a distinction between the two--games have rules and digital toys don’t. Three-quarters of my very generous £20k annual budget goes into play, and I actively look for funding so I can do more. For me, they’re the best way to engage my audience, but don’t be tricked into thinking they are the only tool for you. They’re a gateway, a beginning, the frontline of engagement to deeper content. But, when created well, games are works of art in themselves (play Journey or Maniac Mansion and see what I mean) If you’re considering games, think hard about what’s doable on your budget, don’t be over ambitious and try to create a FPS consoletype experience on £5k, it’s straight-up not going to happen. Do the best you can with what you’ve got. Play lots of games and find out what you like, discover the different kinds of games and toys out there, and think about how you might use those game mechanics. Think about what you are trying to communicate with the game, and keep this and your brand and audience in mind.
FIVE: BROTHERHOOD Or: a brief note on building communities. To paraphrase from one of the best films from the '80s, perhaps ever: “If you build it, they will come--then what?” Look at Kevin Costner, and learn. My Gallery, my games, and my blogs all have content that has to be moderated before it appears online. I manage the process myself. Tate Kids is mostly just me. Once I went away and left it for a few days and there was 18,000 bits of digital arts and craft waiting for me when I got back. I have to check for unsuitable painting titles, unsuitable artist names, and check the message text they use when sending on to friends to ensure we’re not aiding cyber bullying. It’s a lot. Try and think laterally around this. I clearly didn’t. Think about how will you sustain, have a plan in place for moderation. It’s not something you can just build and leave. You need money, time and people. If your budget is tight consider working on existing platforms, new and established that are popping up everywhere--vet them hard though.
SARAH HROMACK (@FORWARDRETREAT) Utopia Then, Reality Now
Utopia Then, Reality Now: (Re)Examining the Wiki Model in Museum Culture was the initial title of my proposal to the 2013 Museums and the Web conference--a title carefully crafted to provoke an audience perhaps more likely to embrace the collectively-driven wiki model than reject it (if only by virtue of possessing a working understanding of wiki culture to begin with!). Though effective as a means of clearly articulating the actual subject matter of the paper, the title: subtitle formula does indeed smack of academic
pretense, a posture befitting of the professional, subject-specific conference setting, where attendees’ workaday experiences are burnished into Reports from the Field visualized and disseminated through the tools of modern business: Keynote, Power Point, Prezi, and SlideShare; Word docs and downloadable PDFs; blogs and social media channels. I trust that the archness of Institutional Strategy Digest’s form compensates for its intentionally oblique title, which was modeled on the language of business manuals and trade publications--the flatfooted opposition to the earnestly explanatory nature of academic language. By producing this ‘zine in a madcap, cross-continental effort over the course of a few short weeks, we hoped to inject a dash of self-effacing humor into the subject at hand. Developing an institutional strategy is an exercise in trial and error, after all. We have no prescriptions to offer here. If we can’t offer solutions, then what suggestions can we make by using the independently produced magazine as a platform for collective collaboration and an alternative model of authorship? The ‘zine is inherently ‘anti-form’ in nature when imagined in its hand-drawn and mimeographed historical apex. (Though computer generated, Institutional Strategy Digest was fittingly produced between the offices of the Whitney Museum, in New York City, and Portland, Oregon, cities whose respective civic dedication to independent music, art, and publishing is legendary.) Institutional sub-narratives--the everyday stories behind the strategies--begin to reveal themselves in the speculative texts, images, project descriptions, and other ephemera submitted here by the handful of practitioners willing to heed our shotgun call for participation. These are our passion plays, performed on the periphery of our professional duties. +++ A comely blonde faces me each and every day as I work in my office at the Whitney Museum of American Art, a single, open cubicle on the fourteenth floor of building located at 290 Park Avenue South, New York, NY. A woefully abject stare stops just short of furrowing her lineless forehead; her hair remains perfectly coiffed, diamonds adorn her ears, nape, and manicured hands, in which she holds a battered cardboard sign: IT MUST BE SOMEBODY’S FAULT. Excised with X-acto knife precision from the cover of W Magazine dated somewhere along 2008--the issue was dedicated to the financial crisis--the nameless woman has been tacked and re-tacked to the walls adjacent to the three desks I have occupied over the course of my employment at the museum. (In her most recent residency, the unnamed woman was awarded a badge of honor by a colleague privy to my first academic love, a particular strain of discourse known as ‘institutional critique’ that emerged in the 1990s. PROCESS AND INSTITUTION both complicates and clarifies the woman’s plea--an ambiguity I find delightful, personally.) The anonymous woman has become my personal talisman--a reminder of an exceptionally trying moment in the process of shifting the conversation around digital media and technology at the museum. On
November 11, 2009, the museum launched a new modular wiki website built on Ruby on Rails. The wiki--and moreover, a wiki-like production and managerial model used to build and maintain it--enabled the museum to launch a bigger, better website than it could have otherwise done given the relative lack of resources dedicated to the project. However, by building a proprietary, easy-to-use content management system, Economy, and distributing production labor across the museum’s staff, we accomplished much more than the a successful exercise in cross-departmental collaboration. Within months, it became clear that by distributing labor so widely and broadly, we had effectively reinforced the department-based siloing that fragments institutional communications. As departments managed subject-specific content while building and launching their own pages, some of the museum’s strongest, most engaging narratives were systematically buried deep within the site’s architecture. Institutional design and editorial standards suffered as multiple minds and hands tended various pages. The wiki model--both as a technical structure and social contract--is all but diametrically opposed to the way museums actually work. Managerial conflicts arose over incidental issues. Workflows were adjusted. Digital Utopianism met institutional bureaucracy and in due time, a new silo emerged: a Digital Media department, launched in 2012. On the signed bition Fuller
wall of my cubicle opposite the woman hangs a poster deby a former colleague and friend to commemorate an exhiof the work of the architect and visionary R. Buckminster held at the Whitney in 2008. It reads:
GO TO WORK, AND ABOVE ALL CO-OPERATE AND DON’T HOLD BACK ON ONE ANOTHER OR TRY TO GAIN AT THE EXPENSE OF ANOTHER. ANY SUCCESS IN SUCH LOPSIDEDNESS WILL BE INCREASINGLY SHORT-LIVED --R. Buckminster Fuller
MICAH WALTER (@MICAHWALTER) Curatorial Poetry === Curatorial Poetry is a Tumblr blog which automatically posts a new “poem” every two hours. These poems are made up of entries in the description field from the collection metadata of Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum. Once every two hours, a random object record is drawn from over 100,000 possible records. The description field is then posted along with a link to the object’s page on the Cooper-Hewitt collection website. There is no other information about the object other than its record ID number.
This project was initially an experiment to learn how to work with the Cooper-Hewitt Collection API, as well as the Tumblr API. It was inspired by the work of the Cooper-Hewitt Labs who had previously built a new collection website from the ground up. On the collection website, whenever an object is presented that has not yet been digitized, the descriptive text is placed where the image would normally appear.
I quickly noticed that this text was often humorous, and sometimes not very descriptive, as in the example shown here of “dragon.” I was also interested in finding new ways to bring the depths of Cooper-Hewitt’s collection to the surface and in a context that was unusual and a new point of view. In this new form as a Tumblr blog, as well as a Facebook and Twitter feed, objects are thrust upon the blog’s followers every two hours.
I was interested in how this little intervention might play out, giving the follower a small surprise every two hours. This timeclock-ticking action I felt was necessary in order to ensure that followers would sort of “see” it no matter when they logged on. A quick scroll back in time reveals at least one or two posts, no matter where you follow the feed. This is a huge departure from how we normally think of browsing or searching a collection of, well anything! It’s this lazy and casual form of browsing that I think is very interesting. Its how we communicate these days, receive news, and learn of the intricacies of our culture on a daily basis. To me, it’s a little absurd to think that just because we have a collection, people will want to come and look through it. I’m also very interested in the de-coupling of images from this feed of information. I think the “poems” stand on their own and provide an unusual and unexpected way of learning about design. We are always so quick to think in images, but the Internet was built on text, and reading. Whole sub-sections of the net communicate nearly solely based on the written word, and I think this project folds into this idea very nicely.
In the work I do, I tend to go for the simple. I like small projects that leave you guessing and thinking about what is actually going on here. Curatorial Poetry is “just another little robotweblog”. With the current size of the collection, it should be able to run for about the next 8 years--once every two hours.
RICH BARRETT-SMALL (@RICHBS) === /Users/barrettsmall/Library/Mob…nts/Professional Development.md Page 1 of 3 Saved: 06/04/2013 23:03:19 Printed For: Rich Barrett-Small # Professional Development!
I'm revisiting an earnest and mercifully short talk I gave at [UK Museums on the Web] last year. It was sandwiched between two inspiring visions of digital strategy for museums and galleries, delivered by [John Stack] of Tate and [Andrew Lewis] of the V&A. Both of these gentlemen have had the dubious honour of being my line manager in the past 6 months.!
3 … … … … …
This piece is concerned with being a functional digital professional whilst dealing with problematic technologies in complex organisations.!
## Technological Problems!
Technology will always reflect a business's internal dysfunction. More succinctly, **you get the CMS you deserve**.!
Technologists are often somewhere down the chain of command and may be last to hear of the exciting digital component of a project that has been promised to a funding body. Such things can be skewered into the side of an in-house development team's workflow, derailing the forward momentum of other projects. Projects start to slip. !
11 … … … …
Not to worry, we just make the team bigger. If we want to lay more bricks in the same period of time, we simply need more bricklayers. On software projects, this approach falls foul of the Mythical Man Month principle, which [Joel Spolsky] summarises [here] as "when you add more programmers to a late project, it gets even later". This is because you increase the number of communication paths—or potential confusion paths (my words). The implication here is that rapid communication and understanding within a project team is a greater bellwether of success than the number of warm bodies you have typing code.!
13 … … … … … … … … …
## Human Responses!
Avoiding scenarios like the one above is a concern for all digital practitioners. It also requires organisational governance and a wider understanding of the complexities of technological work. You wouldn't suddenly ask a set of building contractors to refurbish a museum's lavatories when the same team was 75% of the way through transforming your flagship gallery. !
17 … … … … … 18 19 … … … …
Unfortunately for us technologists (designers, programmers, producers), it may be futile to wait for a venerable institution to change around us and "get it". If you're not working at a trendy start-up, you probably won't get a freezer full of Ben and Jerry's. We need to make our case strongly whilst meeting non-technical colleagues on common
/Users/barrettsmall/Library/Mob…nts/Professional Development.md Page 2 of 3 Saved: 06/04/2013 23:03:19 Printed For: Rich Barrett-Small ground as ambassadors for our profession.!
A [tweet] from the [Godfather of the Web] caught my eye the other day. He was quoting [Mike Monteiro] at [An Event Apart].! " ! > Jeffrey Zeldman @zeldman 15h! > "Eye rolling is not a design skill. If you act like a disenfranchised creative, you'll be treated like one." @Mike_FTW #aeasea!
21 … 22 23 24 …
Here, you can substitute "programming" for "design", "techie" for "creative" and the logic stands. We may not be rewarded with ice cream but we work with the most amazing content on Earth. If we appear credible to our internal audiences, we stand a better chance of serving an audience of millions.!
26 … … … …
## Shadow Digital!
Traditionally, IT departments have become regarded as a bottleneck in big institutions leading to [shadow IT] springing up across teams and finally culminating in half-a-dozen isolated CRMs. !
30 … …
Now, institutions are also finding "web teams" undersized and overworked. This, in turn, results in _shadow digital media_. Formerly, one-off exhibition microsites and Flash apps were the prime examples of this umbrage. !
32 … … …
Throw in the fact that—around the turn of the decade—many of us embarked upon colossal web redesigns/redevelopments. We put into practice what we'd belatedly learned from that [Web 2.0] thing. For those of you too young to remember, "Web 2.0" means "tagging, [AJAX] and rounded corners". Somewhere between 18 months and 3 years later, web teams emerged blinking into the light with an (excellent) 960px wide web site to discover that mobile had happened.!
34 … … … … … …
Now, the world of mobile/tablet native apps has captured the imagination of every department in your institution. Five-figure pots of money are secured from funders or project budgets and converted into these apps with great fanfare.!
36 … … …
As a developer, I'm relatively relaxed about these apps. They work as a marketing tool—like a big glow-in-the-dark, touchy, swipey advertisement. So far, very few have landed on my desk as a maintenance task, which is a blessing. Up to now, apps have been largely "tactical" and fall outside the core digital strategy.!
38 … … … …
39 40 41 42
## Core competencies! !
Avoiding distraction, in-house teams can focus on the core digital
/Users/barrettsmall/Library/Mob…nts/Professional Development.md Page 3 of 3 Saved: 06/04/2013 23:03:19 Printed For: Rich Barrett-Small offering of the museum. There are some aspects of digital that require passionate long-term nurture and engagement. Consider online collections, search, information architecture and community management. External expertise is always welcome but I remember [Seb Chan] coming to the UK a few years ago and advising us, "don't outsource ideas". This echoes another piece Spolsky [wisdom]:!
42… … … … … …
> If it's a core business function -- do it yourself, no matter what. !
That's how I'll end this screed and begin this financial year.!
47 48 49 50 … 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 … 62 63 64 65
_Set in [Markdown] and 12pt Menlo Regular._! : http://museumscomputergroup.org.uk/2012/10/26/programme-for-ukmw12/! : http://www.thestacker.net/! : http://makingweirdstuff.blogspot.co.uk/! : http://www.joelonsoftware.com/! : http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/fog0000000034.html! : https://twitter.com/zeldman/status/319198214811181057! : http://zeldman.com/! : http://aneventapart.com/speakers/mike-monteiro! : http://aneventapart.com/event/seattle-2013! : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadow_IT! : http://oreilly.com/web2/! : http://www.adaptivepath.com/ideas/ajax-new-approach-web-applications! : http://www.freshandnew.org/! : http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/fog0000000007.html! : http://daringfireball.net/projects/markdown/!
KATIE SHELLY (@INTERKATIE) AND AARON STRAUP COPE (@THISISAARONLAND) === Little Printer from UK-based design consultancy Berg is a device owned by very few people right now. But it just so happens that most of their are early adopter techno-designphiles. Little Printer spits out cute thermal paper 'publications' each day as selected by owners. Katie Shelly at Cooper-Hewitt designed and built a museum publication for Little Printer to help bring visual life to many of of the items in their collection that haven't been photographed yet. It uses the artisanal descriptive text used by curators to disambiguate similar objects on similar museum shelves, and challenges the Little Printer owner to draw what they imagine these objects to be.
KAJSA HARTIG (@KAJSAHARTIG) Scrap your digital strategy! === Barely have museum managers come to terms with their staff using social media channels when now itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s time to take the next disruptive leap. Scrap your digital strategy! Become a social business. WHY SOCIAL BUSINESS? When you inspire your workforce to innovate and collaborate more productively, you create tangible business value. When you anticipate needs and deliver exceptional experiences, you delight your customers and create advocates. When you integrate your business processes with the right social tools, you secure a competitive advantage and pioneer new ways of doing business. http://www.ibm.com/ social-business/us/en/ Digital is not something new to museums. Most museums have been using digital tools since the early 1990â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, some even as early as the 1960â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s. The big change came with social media around 2005 and onwards. This change was only the beginning of something we then could hardly comprehend. In fact using social media has turned out to be only a step on the ladder towards becoming a social business. Not a goal in itself. Brian Solis at the Altimeter group describes the evolution towards social business in six stages: 1. Planning: Where we listen and learn 2. Presence: Where we stake our claim 3. Engagement: Where we deepen our relationships 4. Formalized: Where we organize for scale 5. Strategic: First level of becoming a social business, scaling across business units 6. Converged: The final stage where social drives transformation within the business So how do we respond to this new reality? By shifting focus from social media channels and tools to transforming the museum. How do we move to stage six? Stay ahead by ending the New media department, getting rid of all staff with digital in their titles, and become a social business where digital is just as integrated into every single part of your organization as any other device for communication. Launch a social business-project, with a social strategist leading the next steps towards becoming a social business. Social business strategy is about transforming the entire museum. From a traditional linear organizational structures to a more fluid structure. So where does digital fit into this?
Digital tools are at the very center of this evolution. At the same time, digital in itself does not change anything. Social does. Combine the two and voilà! So what does the social museum look like? It affects the entire organization. Here are some examples: MARKETING AND COMMUNICATION Marketing and communication is decentralized and social. Communication has already moved out of the Marketing department. It now has to be strategic on it’s new arenas. This means focusing on joining existing conversations. Map your tribes, your target groups. Build sustainable conversations. Keep up to date with every single tool and channel that will benefit your strive to become a social business. STAFF Social business activity needs to occur in the flow of people’s work rather than be a separate, additional task for them to do. http://www.forbes.com/sites/rawnshah/2012/04/24/why-social-business-can-lead-to-reinventing-the-company-model/ Social is the new normal. Staff all over the museum should by now be expected to not only manage digital tools without any problems, but to use them in a social communication with the museum’s target groups. Learning new skills, as a staff member, is integrated into everyday work. Staff are starting to learn knowledge in the flow of their activities. In addition, they are also learning from their environment and more specifically, the network of people around them. Social strategists will support and guide the staff in communicating their work with collegues and target groups in new and innovative ways. COLLECTIONS Collections are at the very core of this evolutionary step. Collections are the founding bricks in building long lasting and prosperous relationships with target groups. They make up an untapped potential for the stories and experiences that museums need to share to connect with their potential visitors. Collections can be used for co-creation, which in turn is great for building engagement and extending the museum experience to include a richer “before” and “after”.
SCRAP YOUR DIGITAL STRATEGY? OR IN FACT â&#x20AC;&#x201C; NOT JUST YET? It isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t enough just to have a new normal; we still have to understand what the overall framework should be. http://www.forbes.com/sites/rawnshah/2012/04/23/how-tomove-away-from-the-industrial-age-company-model/2/ Now, is scrapping your digital strategy really the way to go? Dropping all digital titles? Integrating digital and social all over the organization? Maybe in a not so distant future. Some are already taking this step, like the ad agency Honesty in Sweden, who in October 2012 announced dropping all digital titles. http://adage.com/article/agency-news/digital-titles-ad-agencies/238024/ But are we there yet? In reality most museums are maybe at stage 3 or possibly 4 on the Brian Solis ladder towards becoming a social business. And what are we actually striving for? Facing new challenges in the digital era museums clearly need to rethink their digital strategies to fit into a social business.
CAROLYN ROYSTON (@CARO_FT) ===
The Imperial War Museum (IWM) has recently updated its digital strategy first published in 2010 to reflect the changes, developments and achievements that have taken place in digital activity in the museum over this short space of time. The updated strategy has at its heart an aspiration--to develop the confidence, initiative and digital capability of staff at all levels, so that they embed digital media instinctively in their work. There are four key goals to help us achieve this aim, of which one is to transform the role of the Digital Media team into consultants and facilitators. This will involve the team moving beyond project delivery into roles that will encourage digital leadership across the museum, support and mentor project teams working on digital projects, and provide overall quality assurance and governance on digital delivery. In the first instance, high impact, transformational projects for the organisation have been identified. These projects will apply these new principles for working in a â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;digitalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; way, and demonstrate the difference and value that this approach will bring. In addition, as part of raising the digital capability of staff, the Digital Media team is also introducing a new museum-wide initiative called IWM Computer Club. This is an informal club for all staff that aims to provide a hands-on experience with technology. It will initially run as monthly drop-in sessions but with plans to become more frequent if demand is there. The sessions are designed to be fun, practical and non-museum related. Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be running sessions on Twitter, Facebook, Xbox and gesture control, making a movie on an iPad and uploading to YouTube. We have designed stickers--physical and digital--that we will give out to anyone who attends a session. After a certain number of sessions, people can move up to a new level--new stickers, digital rewards (iTunes vouchers etc).
Ultimately, I would like the museum to recognise people’s attendance at Computer Club and for managers to see their team member’s interest in digital, which will lead to digital leadership opportunities where they can apply their interest in digital to their own areas of work. Below is how we are promoting the first session of Computer Club to staff via the intranet: What’s the first rule of Computer Club? Talking about Computer Club! Digital Media is launching Computer Club, a museum-wide initiative to provide a space for IWM staff to get hands-on experience with technology. Come along for demonstrations, experiments and informal discussions. Our first session, Twitter: A Bit of Fry and Gaga, take place at IWM London. We’ll be looking at all Twitter--setting up an account, privacy settings, tweeters, hashtags, using plugins such as TwitPic Vine, and more.
will things top and
Spaces are limited to 50 people, so please reserve your spot.
Above: IWM Computer Club badges
JOHN STACK (@STACKER) === IN THE FUTURE . . . In the future all content will be commissioned for cross-platform publication. In the future all content will be modular to facilitate repurposing and reuse. In the future social media will primarily be used as a platform for learning. In the future curators will write regular blogs. In the future curators will respond to blog comments. In the future collections will be catalogued for access as well as management. In the future most exhibitions will be entirely digital. In the future as much time will be spent analysing digital audiences as physical visitors. In the future technology solutions will be incredibly bespoke and complex. In the future technology solutions will be incredibly simple and off-the-shelf. In the future storytelling will be in every employee's job description. In the future the information desk will be in the cloud. In the future if visitors do not have a smartphone they will not have access to any information. In the future content will not be produced unless copyright can be cleared inperpetuity. In the future copyright restrictions will mean history will end one hundred years ago. In the future the digital team will be invited to be involved with projects from initiation phase. In the future curators will curate the collection online more than they do for the physical museum. In the future there will be no need for microsites. In the future every project will have an immersive microsite. In the future nothing will be printed. In the future all digital assets will be appropriately managed and preserved. In the future everyone will be working in the marketing and communications department. In the future everyone will be working in the digital media department. In the future everyone will be working in the education department. In the future a child playing a game by the museum on a third-party website will count as a "visit".
Compute! Issue 095, April 1988, page 48 http://archive.org/details/1988-04-compute-magazine
In the future digital content will be polished and have high production values. In the future digital content will be rough, rapid and have low production values. In the future all content will have a byline. In the future visitor comments and user generated content be archived in the collection management system. In the future the museum will have many voices. In the future the museum logo will be more important than ever. In the future everything will be digitised and be available for reuse by audiences. In the future the majority of resources will be spent maintaining a vast technology estate. In the future a visit to the museum will be a read and write experience. In the future there will be no "Digital X" job titles because all jobs will be digital. In the future content owners will manage their content. In the future visitors will discuss ideas and opinions with each other and museum staff. In the future digital products and services will all be profitable. In the future every sponsor and funder will want something digital as part of their partnership. In the future content will be layered according to audience needs. In the future content will be cross-referenced and interlinked. In the future there will be more links to content outside the website than within the website. In the future audiences will volunteer electronically and no one will know who they are. In the future there will be tight governance of digital activity and centralised coordination and processes. In the future there will be light weight guidelines and policies governing digital initiatives. In the future exhibition ticket prices will be reduced in return for an email address. In the future visitors will not be able to leave an exhibition until they have tweeted about it or left a Facebook comment.
In the future all website content will also be on third-party websites and be encountered there more than on the museum website. In the future audio tours will be so personalised that no two experiences will be the same. In the future curators will be hired based on their portfolio of digital projects. In the future interations with audiences will take place in realtime, around the clock, 365 days per year. In the future programme decisions will be made according to which exhibitions receive the most crowd funding. In the future wall labels will be crowd sourced. In the future the digital strategy will be embedded across the organisation. In the future there will be no need for a digital strategy. In the future it will not be necessary to visit the museum at all. In the future there will be so much going on that no one will be able to keep track of it. John Stack http://www.tate.org.uk With apologies to Mr David Byrne http://youtu.be/ngVGxYLRrZ0 http://www.davidbyrne.com/music/cds/knee_plays/lyrics.php
COLOPHON Institutional Strategy Digest === EDITED BY: Sarah Hromack, Head of Digital Media, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York John Stack, Head of Digital Transformation, Tate, London ON THE OCCASION OF: "Professional Forum: Institutional Strategy from Europe to the U.S." a session presented at the Museums and the Web conference in Portland, Oregon on April 19, 2013. ART DIRECTION AND PRODUCTION: Elyse Mallouk (@landfillarchive), Digital Content Manager, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York TECHNICAL DIRECTION: Alison Abreu-Garcia (@alisonag), Manager of Digital Technologies, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York CONTRIBUTORS: Rich Barrett-Small, Lead Developer and Web Architect, Tate, London Seb Chan, Director of Digital and Emerging Media, Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, New York Aaron Straup Cope, Senior Engineer (Computers and the Internets), Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, New York Kajsa Hartig, Digital Navigator, Nordiska Museet, Stockholm Sarah Hromack, Head of Digital Media, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York Sharna Jackson, Tate Kids Editor, Tate, London Carolyn Royston, Head of Digital Media, Imperial War Museums, London Katie Shelly, Digital Media Specialist, Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, New York John Stack, Head of Digital Transformation, Tate, London Micah Walter, Webmaster, Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, New York ILLUSTRATIONS: 2, 3, 41-43: desks at the Tate Online offices 11, 25, 33: Digital Media department desks, Whitney Museum