Jim Long - Digital Media and Culture

Building Relationships With Social Media Tools


Editing the Videoblog in DC Coffee Shop

It’s taken a trip to Crawford, Texas for me to find the time reflect on the tremendous response to the blogging, Twittering, and video blogging I did from my round-the-world trip with the Secretary of Defense. It was an endeavor that I can describe, with certain resignation, as Rosenblum-esqe, as I managed to do my network pool camera crew thing AND a sidebar videoblog. MSNBC.com ran my videoblog as a two-part series. Part one took us from DC to Singapore, and in Part two, we visited Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, and France. Must-read TV industry blogs, TV Newser and Fishbowl DC both ran very nice posts on my efforts.


Jim Long shoots Defense Secretary Gates boarding CH-47

It was a long, arduous journey, but it was made much more pleasant by the community of friends that were with me every step of the way. I blogged and Twittered from the trip and was inspired by the great group of folks I’ve come to know through Twitter and other social media. Every time I checked my Twitters, I was struck by all of the messages of encouragement. I wonder what I would do without Twitter and my network of friends there. Recently a friend made this observation about all of these hyper-connected relationships that transcend time and space.

Isn’t it great (crazy) to feel so connected to people you’ve never met–cheering them on, giving/getting advice
-Twitter friend

This Twitter friend had really pointed out the strange duality of this Contiuous Partial Friendship (David Weinberger’s nod to Linda Stone’s critical theory on social media, Continuous Partial Attention) While I won’t delve into the pros and cons, it is both great and crazy, or curious at least, why people who’ve never met feel such affinity towards one another. People who I’ve never met genuinely care about what I’m doing, just as I care about them. This affinity, which Leisa Reichelt describes as Ambient Intimacy, helps us stay connected across time and space and build unique bonds using online social media tools.

that sense of connectedness that you get from participating in social tools online that allow you to feel as though you are maintaining and, perhaps in fact, increasing your closeness with people in your social network through the messages and content that you share online – be it photographs or text or information about upcoming travel.
-Leisa Reichelt

Deb Schultz lyrically describes this type of this type of hyper-connected online behavior as “weaving”. In this post she points out how this “weaving” will be crucial to businesses trying to stay relevant and successful in this environment where markets are growing faster and smarter than most companies.

Jon Swanson described how we create community and relationship with these tools.

Because of twitter, I learned of a guy named Jim Long. Jim is a camera guy for NBC news and twitters throughout his day. Recently he spent a week traveling around the world. He is producing a two-part video travelogue which is wonderful. Part one is here. What is so compelling is that he gives a human side to the people who are doing the media work and the government work. It is about relationship.
-Jon Swanson

In Hawaii, social media merged with social life, where Roxanne Darling of Beachwalk met up with the weary Pentagon press at Alan Wong’s restaurant in Honolulu. Roxanne was a delightful counterpoint to the old media guard. She videoblogged about our discussions on mainstream and emerging media

Beach Walks with Rox #439 – Take a Blogger to Work

Videoblogging pioneer Steve Garfield gave a nice hat tip to our efforts, as did colleague, contemporary, and wordsmith Stewart Pittman. Atlanta blogger and social media leader Grayson Daughters questioned the resources applied to shooting a bunch of far-flung photo-ops, and while, she does raise a valid point, I hope I have provided context in her comments section. My DC Media Maker posse wonders when i’m getting that promotion from NBC. I’ll wait for that Twitter from @CathleenRitt. 😉


Connie Reece discussing social media with NBC News team

Back here in Crawford, social media merged once again with social life. Connie Reece of Every Dot connects – one of my Twitter friends – stopped by the White House Press TV workspace in Crawford for a mind-share between old media and new. It was really a pleasure to meet face to face with someone I’ve come to know on Twitter, and Connie is even more delightful in person that her online persona betrays. Nothing can beat the human connection of direct face to face human interaction, but I do believe all of these social media platforms can help create vital bonds. On my grueling round the world adventure, It was these relationships that truly buoyed me throughout the journey. We really all made that trip together. Thank you!

  • rosenblum

    A real pleasure and a delight to read your words and insights. Just fascinating stuff. Congrats!

  • http://www.techpopuli.net Jack Hodgson

    I just got around to watching your two parts on the round-the-world trip. I agree with all the others who say it was terrific. Thanks.

    Here’s my question: In both episodes you use a shot that seems to be unique to internet video. It’s the standup/walking, self-handheld shot. The camera held at arms length, pointed back at the speaker.

    I’ve asked many people, and no-one seems to know (or have invented) a name for this shot. Any ideas?

    Keep up the great work.

    — Jack
    Twitter: jackhodgson

  • http://www.deborahschultz.com deb schultz

    Jim – you are an uber-weaver and media guy for the current evolution fer sur

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  • http://psybrrr.typepad.com/kingofallremotecontrols/ Ian Ories

    Jim – This is a great article about the value of media networking. And I kinow that all the users of Twitter will agree with you.

    Regards, Ian

  • http://levite.wordpress.com jon swanson

    Part of the reason that there is such support is that you are so supportable. That coined word means that you go more than halfway to connect, to encouage, to interact. You are building bridges for all of us in twittering, but more importantly, in relating. Wonderful reflection. And glad to be part of your connections.

  • vergenewmedia

    thank you all for furthering the conversation! Jack, I’ve actuaally heard the shot referred to as the “arms-length shot”

  • vergenewmedia

    jon, you are very kind to say that. Thank you!

  • http://jonnygoldstein.com Jonny Goldstein

    Jack Hodgson,

    I’ve heard the shot you referred to in your post called “The Verdi” after videoblogger extraordinaire, Michael Verdi.

  • http://everydotconnects.com Connie Reece

    Jim, thanks for hosting our Crawford “tweet-up” — I had a great time. The conversation about old-new-social media could have gone on for hours! You bring up some important concepts in this post, ones we will be revisiting in the days ahead. It’s both exciting and frustrating sometimes to have a window seat on this how-is-media-shifting plane ride. My regards to you and the NBC crew, and kudos for your work in both old and new media.

  • http://spaceygreview.blogspot.com/2007/04/life-during-wartime.html SpaceyG

    Jim Hon…. pretty please with sugar on top… you have GOT to debate that jackass Andrew Keen who’s preening about in limos (see his yawner of a blog for more on that) pimping his book about the Cult of Something He Made Up In The Shower And Turned Into A Book. He’s wasting everyone’s valuable time arguing with a bunch of boring armchair wanker lipflappers instead of bothering to take on the cool kids such as you who really are connecting with, well, EVERYONE in the most amazing new media kinda ways.

    More here:

    Thanks for the linky love too!

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  • http://www.vergnewmedia.com Jim Long

    Connie, it was interesting that you got a first-hand look at some of the frustrations felt by my colleagues. From my perch I’m able to see both the challenges and opportunities that social/new media offer.

    Grayson, I don’t know who is more boring, Keen, or the self-referential sycophants who posted some astonishingly dull comments on his blog in order to get link love. Ironic while they all bash web 2.0 and social media, they’re reading on posting on.. wait for it… A BLOG!

  • http://www.myurbanreport.com Amani Channel

    Jim you are putting in major work. You do it like a professional video blogger :). Great to see that NBC is rolling with you.

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    wow ))
    its very reasonable point of view.
    Nice post.
    realy gj

    thank you 😉

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