Museums and Social Media

This week we’re discussing museums and social media, or what one author called the “social media morass“.

As another source of good and interesting reviews and discussion, I found Museum Nerd on twitter @MuseumNerd, and on the web:

For the record, here’s the assignment:

Assignment: FIND 2-3 instances of Museums (and related institutions) on Social Media (apps, websites, etc.), and then do your best to collect the information outlined below, to be prepared to present your findings in class.

  1. Find ALL the varieties of social media they participate in (make a list)
  2. Are there some services they used to participate in that are old, obsolete, or no longer exist?
  3. Can you find the date they joined? Were they early adopters of the service?
  4. For each service/site/app they participate in:
    1. Based on their posts and/or an explicit statement, who is the audience they are trying to reach through their social media presence?
    2. What kinds of content are they posting?
    3. Do you think it is (or is likely to be) effective for reaching the audience they hope to reach?
    4. Do they explicitly state or implicitly suggest that they welcome participation of the public, the audience via those social media outlets?
    5. Do they explicitly ask for participation by viewing public?
    6. What kind(s) of participation are they seeking or hoping for?
    7. What kind(s) of participation are they getting?
    8. Who isn’t participating?
    9. Is the museum attempting to reach other audiences via other means, (other than social media?)
    10. Who from the museum authors these social media posts? Curators? Staff? Volunteers? All of the above?
    11. Do different categories of staff/volunteer author different kinds of social media? i.e. blogs vs. twitter?
  1. Overall, reflect on these museums social media presence:
    1. What are they doing well? What aren’t they doing well?
    2. What do you like? what don’t you like?
    3. Is there yet more potential to the social media that your selected museums have not fully reached or achieved?
    4. What more could they or should they be doing? & to what end?

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