Hi Twickenham people, you’re all looking mighty fine today it has to be said. But then again you always do.
Way back in May I told you that I wanted to take a step back from the blogosphere for a while or possibly even for ever. In true twickerati style I did and also did not do exactly that. Everyone in the team (of one) certainly cut right back from those heady days of trying to update the site twice a week. It was like a very heavy but strangely pleasant weight being lifted off our collective shoulders (both of them) but we still ended up doing a smattering of ‘not-so-good’ posts anyway because in Twickenham there’s always interesting shizzle going down. In other words, I couldn’t quite bear to give up completely on something that’s time consuming, frequently frustrating but often fun. Killing off a vibrant ‘hyperlocal’ web site felt illogical.
But this ‘limping along’ approach is far from ideal and was never going to be satisfactory for anyone – I knew that then, you know that now. It can’t go on. So now it’s time to see if there’s a way to take things forward with a more collaborative approach and the question you’ve got to ask yourself is, “Do you want to be part of it?” Do you feel lucky? Well do ya?
Can you help?
If you’re interested in helping out by writing content for the site then that would be great; fantastic in fact. If you’re reading this then you should already know the ‘ethos’ of twickerati and it’s very important that you want to be part of that ethos. How would I describe it? Pro-Twickenham, informative, entertaining (I hope), occasionally funny (yeah, whatever), frequently irreverent, not party political, not a campaigning site (unless something really needs ‘calling out’) and generally in favour of progress over stasis.
What could you do?
There are a few things we’d love to get you involved with:
- First and foremost, the best thing you could do would be to write a couple of items each month on a range of topics – either news, features or about what’s on locally. Yes, you’d be making a commitment to deliver real copy for real publication on the interweb.
- Bring some techie or design or other fancy-dan skills to improve things like listings (e.g. events coverage)
- Help with more exciting ideas if there’s the will to make them work – how about audio? video?? understanding what the hell the point of Snapchat is???
A handful of regular contributors each producing something every month could make a massive difference to the website and to Twickenham. Some might even call it transformative.
And one more thing… you’d be doing all this based on a mix of community spirit, vanity, an outlet for your creativity and because it’s a much better way to spend your time than watching DIY SOS. Put bluntly, there’s no money involved unless you’ve got some good revenue generating ideas.
Interested in talking more?
Don’t be shy, no previous blogging experience is necessary, so why not come and discuss some ideas over a drink at The Fox (details to be confirmed) at 8.30pm on Thursday 19th November. Or drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.
Twickenham is waiting for you!
Just to update people on the plan for Thursday and to manage any expectations you may have.
Initially I had expected three or four people to get in touch and that after a couple of conversations it might mean that two or three locals might be right for helping to take things forward. That was an incorrect assumption. More than a dozen people have been in contact suggesting a range of different things. Wow! It’s fantastic that so many people want to help keep the twickerati ‘ice cream van of news’ on the road but double figures is just too many people to turn into some kind of ‘editorial team’. Fear not, drinks at The Fox are absolutely going ahead as planned on Thursday but the focus will be much more about having informal conversations and seeing what might work, rather than any kind of grand editorial summit. There will be no big speech or table thumping about tomorrow’s headline. It’s a ‘getting to know you’ session if you will.
My priority is still to find a very small group of Twicker-types who will be able to generate their own ideas and produce regular copy on a range of subjects in a way that sticks to the twickerati ethos of “News, comment and ill-informed opinion”. It doesn’t mean that people with ideas for one off postings won’t ever get a look in, they will. In some cases the fit between what you’re offering and what the site needs (i.e. what I want as the Megalomaniac Editor) might be perfect. Brilliant! In other cases it might not be right at the moment, or possibly even ever. Not to worry if that’s the case. Alternatively you might have some great ideas about site design or delivery on different platforms. It’s all about finding ways to shake the hand of progress in the time-honoured twickerati tradition. In short, let’s talk Twickenham and find the flip out!
The Fox, from 8.30pm, Thursday 19th November.
Or if you can’t make it, by email afterwards.