Great People We Meet on the Road, Speaking on a Sustainable Future in Tourism

One of the things I have been loving about all of the great traveling we’ve been doing with Roamancing this past year are the lovely and interesting people we’ve been meeting around the world, including the two in this video, Mohamed A. El Monem and Audrey Scott:

 

 

Mohamed is the host of a couple of Shows on Egyptian Satellite TV and an excellent interviewer, especially as he was translating on top of that.  Audrey and I also had fun debating some pretty weighty topics with him.

Audrey, like us, is a digital storyteller, and I might add, an excellent one.  She and her husband, Daniel Noll, have been focused on digital storytelling around travel with their site, UncorneredMarket.com. Also similar to us, they focus on the human side of travel, waking people’s minds up to cultures around the world.  They are beautiful people inside and out, and I feel very fortunate to have spent a fair bit of time with them the past few months.

 

Mohamed and Audrey on Egyptian Satellite TV

 

I am excited for tonight, as they will be speaking on Sustainability in Travel in Vancouver, which means I get to sit back and listen to a few more of their stories.  Pleased to share that there are still tickets, so you can enjoy them too. Here are the details:

 

#WeVisitEgypt ~ A Digital Egyptian Travel Tale

Courtesy of Audrey Scott & Daniel Noll of UnCornered Market

 

We are Roamancing Egypt (again)!

As some of you may be aware we launched Emme Rogers and Brie Mason into their latest digital, interactive transmedia tale this past summer, Roamancing ~  a travel tale in search of those most elusive of creatures: love and romance.  We’ve been having fun with it and for those of you that are familiar with Emme, I am sure you can imagine the silly shenanigans and characters we’ve met along the way, from being presented with a key to City of Yorkton with the fabulous Katrina German to forever bumping into a few delightfully mischievious Blues Men that have wormed their way into our hearts and our stories. With a trip to Egypt this past December to speak at the International Organisation for E-Tourism Conference in Cairo, Lori Yearwood and I decided that like many of the wonderful storytellers that we work with, it was time to weave ourself into our own tales.  I am glad we did, as I had a lot of fun telling a tale or two with Lucy Duck and the Roamancing Red Boots in Egypt, and I am proud to say I am the first of our team to have done the Roamancing strut overseas (even if I looked ridiculous in doing so).

 

Lucy prepares to enter the Mosque

 

One of the realisations from being in Cairo during demonstrations in Tahrir Square, was the impact of mainstream media images on people back home.  I was perfectly safe and having a grand time, yet perceptions from media images in North America were that Egypt was in a state of violence and chaos.  The biggest threat to me?  Too many marriage proposals.  Here are two posts I wrote on the topic, upon returning home:

It struck me that when we’ve seen images of rioting in Canada, no one worries for ones safety in still visiting the country.  That is not the case with Egypt, as the culture is so different from our own.  Yet I felt welcomed and safe in visiting Egypt and saw how damaging the media images from Tahrir Square have been to Egyptian Tourism, a major player in the Egyptian economy.

 

Hmm ... Clearly the 'flat' aspect of the bread making was lost of me.

 

It is for this reason that we have been consulting with the Egyptian Tourism Authority on using digital storytelling to share the wonderful and exciting travel experiences that you can have in Egypt in ‘real’ time. I am also pleased to share that the Egyptian Tourism Authority has similarly been consulting with two of the wonderful digital storytellers and fellow speakers that I recently met in Cairo, Daniel Noll and Audrey Scott. Daniel and Audrey are the husband-and-wife storytelling team behind the award winning travel blog, Uncornered Market. For over five years, they have continuously travelled around the world, inspiring others to create their own life and travel experiences.

Together with Audrey and Dan, I will be heading to Egypt from April 21 – 29, 2012 with Emme Rogers, Lucy Duck, and the Roamancing Red Boots in tow to share our adventures in Egypt in ‘real’ time and demonstrate for the World Tourism Organisation (UNTWO) Conference on Media and Tourism: Partnering with the Media in Challenging Times how digital media and travel bloggers can be used to change the conversation about tourist destinations challenged by negative perceptions related to current events.  As a part of this, Dan, Audrey and I will be hosting an informal session with the Egyptian Tourism Authority at the beginning of the  Conference on Thursday April 26th, 2012 to demonstrate our #WeVisitEgypt digital storytelling campaign.

 

Audrey Scott & Daniel Noll of Uncornered Market in Cairo

 

We invite you to join us on our Digital Egyptian Adventure by following along with the hastag #WeVisitEgypt on your social networking feeds, as well as through uncorneredmarket.comroamancing.com and emmerogers.com.  Furthermore, we invite you to join us in demonstrating to Tourism how effective digital media, including social media and blogging can be in sharing a message. Here are some ways that you can become involved in the #WeVisitEgypt Campaign:

  • Share what we are doing in Egypt and the #WeVisitEgypt hashtag to your media channels;
  • Follow #WeVisitEgypt on your social networking channels and retweet content that appeals to you;
  • Interact with us on our adventure at @UMarket@Roamancing@EmmeRogers and @EricaHargreave; and
  • Share your own photos, video and blog posts from Egypt with the #WeVisitEgypt hashtag (and we will do our best to retweet them).

Thank you in advance for whatever ways you decide to join in the #WeVisitEgypt Adventure.

Best wishes,

Erica Hargreave

Happy 2012!

2011 was a year of challenges, both personally and in business.

In terms of Ahimsa Media, it was a year that saw much growth in the company in a positive way, in which Lori and I really were able to make some informed decisions on the direction we wanted to take the company.  It was also a very busy year for the company, in which we:

  • Built the social media strategy around a number of television series;
  • Managed the digital storytelling, digital audience building and social networking for 6 TV Series and Films;
  • Wrote successful funding applications for clients;
  • Taught at 3 Post-Secondary Institution across Canada, including a grad school lab;
  • Spoke around the World at film festivals and travel conferences on the digital space;
  • Launched a new transmedia travel property, Roamancing, with Emme Rogers; and
  • Sat on the Advisory Board for Merging Media and the Adhoc Advisory Board for a new Digital Program at a Post-Secondary Institution.

It even ended personally with 2 marriage proposals in 2-days, but then I guess that’s Egypt for you.

As we head into 2012, we look forward to exciting new challenges, growing as speakers around the world, building in the travel industry in addition to the fun we have with the film and television world, and of course, a little Roamancing (before long we shall have this word in everyones vocabulary, as really who doesn’t want to roamance).

 


Happy New Year everyone!  Wishing you a year of love, health, happiness and a whole of fun, wherever your adventures end up taking you.

With love and laughter from,

Erica, Lori and the rest of the Ahimsa Media gang

Merging Media 2011

Two principles that Ahimsa Media has been built upon are education and the sharing of ideas and collaborating with others.  This is what we did back in the day with Megan Cole and Bridging Media to encourage the conversation between technology, digital media and traditional media.  When Megan and I got busy on other projects, I am glad that others picked up where we left off with the conversation.  Most notable of these is Vancouver’s Merging Media Conference, which I have had the honour of sitting on the Advisory Board for the past two years.

No Conference is ever perfect, but this one rates highly in my books, because it encourages a conversation with media makers and technologists from a number of different sectors, including traditional media, emerging media, social media and gaming; and it invites in a number of different voices and opinions from around North America. On top of that, Merging Media provides the opportunity for people to connect through networking events, B2B meetings, and a Master’s Class. For me these are the key ingredients to evolving our ideas and creating the future of media.  It is thanks to events, like this, that we have built a valuable network of colleagues, partners, contractors and friends over the years.

Can Convergent Roulette at Merging Media 2010, photographed by Liz Kearsley.

Merging Media 2011 takes place in Vancouver this week – Thursday October 27th & Friday October 28th – and it is not too late to take part.  You can still sign up.

Some of the highlights:

  • An impressive list of speakers (I’d mention them all, but there are a lot of them, including many that I adore and love listening to) on some interesting topics, including gaming, monetizing, technology, traditional media in an interactive landscape …etc.
  • International B2B (Business to Business) Sessions
  • The VEDC Innovation Gallery where our BC Technology companies will be demoing their latest ‘Tools of Engagement’.

I am also pleased to share that we will be pitching our latest project with Emme Rogers and friends, Roamancing, as a part of the Pitch 360. This is not only a project that we are having a lot of fun with, but that truly reflects the nature of this events, as it combines the efforts and creativity of a number of people world-wide from traditional media, emerging media, social media and gaming.

Hope to see you at Merging Media this week!

Erica