OU Social Media Strategy is a Blast to the Past?!

Readers over a certain age, ex-pats included, will probably remember (hopefully with fondness) a time when the only TV programmes on air in the early hours or on weekend mornings were OU broadcast items on the BBC:

From time to time, (eg OERs: Public Service Education and Open Production), I’ve thought that was the actual heyday of OU broadcasting in terms of get “authentic” Higher Education level teaching content to large audiences, nothwithstanding the popularity of some of the more recent flagship co-produced programming the OU has worked with the BBC on. (For a view of OU/BBC co-produced content currently on iPlayer, see OU/BBC co-pros currently on iPlayer; and for clips from co-pro programmes: clips from OU/BBC co-pros currently on iPlayer.)

As well as the BBC content, there’s also a wealth of OU video material on both YouTube and iTunesU. A great way into this content is through some of the OU’s YouTube playlists, such as 60 Second Adventures in Thought or Seven Wonders of the Microbe World. (See also this full list of OU Learn playlists on YouTube.)

ANyway, one thing that seems (to me at least) to be lacking is a social media strategy (on Twitter at least) relating to broadcast events – academic commentaries or OpenLearn links being tweeted alongside a live OU/BBC co-pro broadcast, for example – that could be used to help drive a second screen experience or community.

But then I realised I was looking in the wrong place – or at least, the wrong time… because it seems the lessons from the past are being heeded… and the @OUpahParr account is actually tweeting out links to OU content to a variety of hashtag streams throughout the early hours, picking up not only the global audience but the UK’s insomniacs and shift workers. It seems that as well as what are presumably scheduled tweets to content, there’s also someone from the comms team (^AF), staffing the account for anybody who wants to chat, or learn more…

Good stuff ;-)

Author: Tony Hirst

I'm a Senior Lecturer at The Open University, with an interest in #opendata policy and practice, as well as general web tinkering...

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