First Day Teaching Social Media Classes at SWU Bangkok

Today was the first day I’m teaching social media classes at Srinakharinwirot University (SWU) in Bangkok. It’s only a small class with four students, but there’s a lot of ground to cover and work out, and with a smaller group it should be easier to collaborate and develop ideas.

The classes are taught in English as part of the Media and Communications degree, which has a focus on media communications and systems. This is an introduction to social media, and will give a taster of both production processes and contextual issues that shape the use of social media.

It’s fortunate that the course is tied in with the Maho Rasop independent music festival, which is co-produced by the university, and will give students the opportunity to get involved with the set-up and running of the festival.

Our aim is to produce a blog that tells the story of the festival from the point of view of these students. We’ll use whatever media equipment we have to hand, and will concentrate on telling the small, interesting stories that give attendees and fans something they can relate to as a glimpse behind the scenes.

We started off discussing what type of social media the students use already. This includes Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Line and YouTube. We are going to set up accounts for each of these platforms and then incorporate them into a WordPress blog site. The aim is to use as much free and open media as possible.

We discussed what people who attend the festival expect of the media that they are using and sharing, and how it will differ from more mainstream and overtly commercial forms of media. The focus of the festival is on independent music and bands, and so the blogs and posts that we share will have to reflect the social vibe of independent music, fashion, art and media.

We also discussed how we will approach the production of the content, and how we can differentiate it from mainstream content in the way that we tell stories and drive ideas forward. Rather than producing everything in HD formats, our aim is to produce content in a DIY style, with an on-the-go feel to it. We’ll use and share whatever we have to hand, and keep updating the feeds so that there is a constant stream of stories to share and spread.

The first day was a good introduction to the approach to social media that I’ve developed over the years, hopefully we’ll make it fun and engage people with some creative and interesting content that matches the ethos of the event. Who knows, this might be something that lives on beyond the project and develops into something that can be grown as a way of getting to know what the independent music scene is like in Bangkok.

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