Making Twitter History in Yorkton, Saskatchewan

A very cool thing happened to us at this years Yorkton Film Festival.  We hit the ‘top ten trending twitter topics’!

Festival Social Media Team: Lee, Karen & Tris tweeting away

Festival Social Media Team: Lee, Karen & Tris tweeting away

Now I know what some of you are thinking, so what, we do that all the time at various events here in Vancouver.  Well, what made this hit on the ‘top ten trending twitter topics’ so exciting for both Tris Hussey and myself is that it was the twitter community following along on the Interactive Storytelling Panel conversation from outside of the room that drove us up to the ‘top ten trending twitter topics’.  To the best of Tris’ and my knowledge this had only ever been done with conferences and events from inside the room.  Definitely a twitter first for both Tris and I.

yff09 delegate, Joanne MacDonald, tweeting for the first time.

yff09 delegate, Joanne MacDonald, tweeting for the first time.

To make this even more exciting, this happened whilst one of the main points that we were getting across is that social media is about community and building the community around you. The twitter community demoed this for the festival delegates in real time, as they illustrated to the room how a conversation could go beyond four-walls and those that could not be present could still be a part of the conversation.  The highlight of this for me was not during the panel, but at the awards gala, when @heckofamom could not be present at festival to see her sister, Teresa MacInnes win two Golden Sheaf Awards for ‘Norm’, but she could follow along in real time on twitter and be a part of the night with her parents, brother-in-law and Teresa.  My eyes welled up with tears and I got all choked up when they thanked Tris and I at the end of the evening.

Teresa & her husband, Kent winning the Golden Sheaf for Best of Festival for Norm

Teresa & her husband, Kent winning the Golden Sheaf for Best of Festival for ‘Norm’

Community is also the factor that makes the Yorkton Film Festival so special to me. This Film Festival is a whole community event that the families of Yorkton, Saskatchewan put on for the film community.  The community made us dinner every night for heavens sake.  It was pretty gosh, darn special and I feel incredibly fortunate for having been a part of it.

Members of the Yorkton Red Hat Society at Opening Night

Members of the Yorkton Red Hat Society at Opening Night

An enormous thank you to the twitter community, Yorkton community and yff09 delegates for making this years Yorkton Film Festival so very special to us!

Raising a glass to the following tweeters:

From Outside the Room:

From Inside the Room:

The Yorkton Film Festival Goes Interactive

Most excited to be heading off to the Yorkton Film Festival this week with Tris Hussey (from m2o)  and Emme Rogers.

The three of us, along with locals, Richard Gustin, Karen Brownlee, and Lee Robertson will be demoing Interactive Storytelling to the Festival by telling the Festivals story through tweets, snapping pics, blogging and possibly even shooting a bit of video.  Much of this is very new to both the film world and Saskatchewan, so we will be posting some basic how-to set-up various social media platform posts on Bridging Media.  We will also be talking a fair bit about characters on the web there.  We even did a podcast with @SookieBonTemps (the True Blood character Sookie Stackhouse on Twitter) that you should be able to find there later this week.  For the lighter side of the Festival (or as Emme likes to call them festivities) check out Emme’s posts on Being Emme.

Designed by Mitch Doll

Designed by Mitch Doll

The main highlight of the festival for us is the Interactive Storytelling Panel on Friday May 22 from 1:30 – 4 pm Saskatchewan time, 12:30 – 3 pm PST.  Very excited about this panel as it is all about what I am passionate about – Interactive Storytelling.  We will be talking about building stories and characters interactively with the audience,  using social media tools to effectively tell stories and further your projects, and discuss the future of media.  Joining me on the panel is Richard Gustin (former head storyteller at SCN), Gresham Bradley (Director of On-line Development at e-cast in New Zealand), and Peter Raymont (Executive Producer of the Border).  Emme is also insisting that she’s going to be making an appearance (apparently the lack of an invitation hasn’t dissuaded her) and Tris will be our in the audience online panelist driving the traffic and conversation online along with Lee Robertson and Karen Brownlee.  We are really hoping some of our social media savvy friends from Vancouver and elsewhere will jump into the online conversation during the panel – the tag is #yff09 – as we want to highlight the sort of talent out there that the producers and broadcasters in the room should be bringing on to their projects.  I know for sure that both @SookieBonTemps and @LordLikely are planning on hopping into the conversation.

Stay Tuned for more from Yorkton (mainly on Bridging Media, m2o, A View from the Isle and Being Emme)!