Tummelvision explores the art of social engagement in tech, business and culture live every Thurs 5-6:30PM PST/8-9:30PMEST

One thing leads to another with Derek Powazek – TummelVision Ep. 14

Episode 14 Download the show

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We’re live now with Laura Fitton @pistachio

Listen in live here now:

Chat on twitter at #tummel

or here on freednode

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What makes a comments section work?


Salon’s Scott Rosenberg had a tummel-savvy piece on this subject recently. Ironically I heard about it around the same time I saw NPR’s Andy Carvin live tweeting an event and mentioning outsourcing the moderation of comments. Andy later clarified the thing he saw as outsource-able was the human filtering of spam.

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I find it kind of funny and I find it kind of sad – Ep. 13 with Zoë Keating

Episode 13 Download the show

Zoë Keating joined us to talk about her music and how she connects with people online. Zoë is a Classical cellist, who uses the techniques of electronic music using a ‘cello, both recorded and most strikingly live. This Wired video shows how she creates live performances like these at PopTech and SFO Airport.
Zoë used to work in tech, but quit to join a rock band on tour.

She sells here music through her website, iTunes (where she has topped the Classicla charts several times) and Amazon. Because she spends a lot of time alone in the studio with a ‘cello and a computer, she is a very active twitter user, and has found collaboratiosn with people including RadioLab, Curt Smith, and a remix project on Terry Reilly’s In C.
She first began multitracking herself as she couldn’t find 16 cellists to play all the parts, but now she organizes ‘cello tweetups that play in her style.

We talked about how it is important to always treat people as human online, and not be selling something, but conversing. We also talked about how “the music industry is by definition an operation invented to divert money spent on music away from actual musicians” – Zoë’s music was defined as non-commercial by record labels, but her audience is adequate to support her because she sells direct, without the industry middlemen taking the majority of the money – as Clay Shirky describes.

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One thing leads to another: Ep. 12 w Christian Crumlish

Episode 12 Download the show

Christian Crumlish is the Director of Yahoo’s interface library and the co-author of Designing Social Interfaces.

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It Ain’t What You Do It’s the Way That You Do It: Ep. 11 w Cathy Brooks

Episode 11 Download the show

Cathy Brooks has been part of the tech start-up scene for a long time and often connects people with one another.

Freshly back from SXSW, the fours of us discussed the events of the conference, it’s change and connections there as well as how Cathy does what she does at events there.

We spent quite a bit of time discussing the controversial keynote conversation between Havas Media Lab’s Umair Haque and Twitter co-founder and CEO Ev Williams and the mass walkout that happened during it. How do you make a good public conversation?

We recalled the Mark Zuckerberg Sarah Lacy keynote conversation of a few years ago which also failed to engage the room and had differences about why that happened.

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@SXSW: When a Problem Comes Along, You Must Whip It : Ep. 10 w Dave McClure

Episode 10 Download the show

We ventured to SXSW where the whole TWIT crew was hosted very hospitably by the beautiful Texas co-working space. We also got the have the unique experience of seeing each other in person while we do the show.

Our guest Dave McClure is a well-known angel investor and persistent entrepreneurial advice giver. Originally a developer himself, he’s worked with too many companies to name, including SlidesShare, Paypal and Facebook. Among 499 other things, he currently runs a seed-stage investment program for Founders Fun.

Remarkably, Dave was able to not use any of his favourite 4-letter words at our request, during TummelVision, given that TWIT is aimed at a general audience including young kids. It’s taken us some time to adapt to the direction, but McClure really did yeoman’s work here and if you start reading his well-regarded blog or check out his sometimes controversial slides you’ll know why. He’s one of the most opinionated and enthusiastic peopel you’ll ever talk to about start-ups.

We discussed the tummeling he does as an angel, and the increasingly influential role angel funders (the people who provide the very first, personal funding of a company) given the decreasing costs of beginning a Net start-up. Dave also discussed what he felt VCs should be focussing on given this change.

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Follow me, oh follow me: Ep. 9 w/Brian Oberkirch

Episode 9 Download the show

We had a great chat with Brian Oberkirch on  the implicit and explicit  impact of the social and geo-loco services rippling through our lives.  Brian is a ‘multi-lingual’ understated tummler and marketing guy who speaks geek and non geek alike.  He looks at the web from a uniquely human place. We focused a bit on the need for web services and sites to do a better job educating their users on the implications of the data they are sharing in plain english as well as discussing  how the features we choose to include on sites set the tone for the community – i.e. ratings systems, game mechanics, “number of followers” etc.

Links we discussed this week:

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Hold on Loosely – Ep. 8 w/ Bill Corbett of MST3K [explicit]

Episode 8 Download the show

We had a great conversation with hilarious and poetic playwright and comic actor Bill Corbett (Rifftrax, Mystery Science Theatre 3000) about elements of improv, playwrighting and comedy that all relate to tummeling and succeeding in working in flow and creating social engagement.

The core elements of improv that seemed most important:
•yes, and (not denying the reality anyones presenting. This isn’t about dealing with trolls but meeting people generally where they are and adding something to it)
•being present

Deb related the element of surprise in the business world to 3Ms decision to capitalize on the accident or “failure” in the creation of Post-its. In tech, Kevin related it to people hacking on an existing product and the ability in the software world to change products quickly. In fear

We also had a pretty in-depth discussion of comedy, it’s evolution into snark, how it’s done on twitter and what Bill sees trending on twitter as a growing return to an approach to more direct humour.

Links from this week:
Attention has not been democratized (danah boyd)
Trust means being vulnerable to someone (Ben Laurie on Ed Felton)
Baratunde’s twitcom
Geek sincerity

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Questions for tonight’s guest? Mystery Science Theatre 300’s Bill Corbett

Bill is a playwright and fantastic comic improviser I’m really excited to be able to talk with him about the experience of creating settings for social dynamics. MST3K really set off what is now our typical way of experiencing media: socially with commentary.

Do you have questions or ideas for tonight’s conversation? Games we can all play together? Put em in the comments.

Bill Corbett is a former writer for MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000 on the Sci-Fi Channel, and previously on Comedy Central. He was also a performer on the show, providing the voice of the robot Crow (version 2.0) and embarrassing himself by playing various other strange characters — including the all-powerful but clueless alien The Observer (a.k.a. “Brain Guy”).

Corbett is also a screenwriter and playwright. Corbett’s screenplay STARSHIP DAVE, co-written with Rob Greenberg, is currently in development with 20th Century Fox Studio.

His play THE BIG SLAM has been produced at numerous theaters across the U.S., including Woolly Mammoth in Washington, D.C.; ACT in Seattle; and actor Jeff Daniels’ Purple Rose Theater in Chelsea, Michigan.

He has been a contributing writer to National Public Radio’s PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION and ALL THINGS CONSIDERED, and is co-creator of the animated web series POKER NIGHT on Icebox.com.

Corbett has also been an actor in the resident acting companies at the Guthrie Theater and the Berkshire Theater Festival, and has taught playwriting and screenwriting at Kenyon College in Ohio, the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, and many other universities and schools.

He’s a graduate of the Yale School of Drama, where he earned an MFA in playwriting and screenwriting. Before that, he received a BA from Yale College.

A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Corbett currently spends a lot of time in Los Angeles, partying into the wee hours with stars like Skeet Ulrich, Tony Danza, and Harry Hamlin. But he actually lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota with his wife Virginia, their daughter Molly, and a small Jack Russell Terrier who really runs the house. He hopes someday to raise alpacas.

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