BostinCamp 5 tweets on Storify

In case you missed it, or want to check out some great links, here’s a Storify of last night’s Bostincamp tweets.

Social Media Surgeries for data and open data skills

OpendataCould your community group or charity be more effective if you collected information in different ways, used it better, shared it with the right people?  Would it help if you could more easily find information that government has about the places  or perhaps the people you are trying to help?
Nick Booth (from Podnosh, who helped us to start our social media surgeries) is experimenting with ways we can use social media surgeries to share not just social media skills with local community groups and charities, but also data skills. Nick will be coming along to our social media surgery in Stourbridge on Monday 23 February to chat to people from local groups and charities about this. Register here if you’d like to to come along. We’d also welcome colleagues from Dudley Council who work with data and are interested in seeing how it can be useful to local groups, and what role they play in helping that.
Here’s a bit more information from Nick:
What should I expect?

As always we start with you and your group.  What are you trying to achieve? What skills and tools do you have at the moment?  Can we show you new ideas that could help you achieve more? Can we help you in practical ways use those skills and tools – there and then? Always the same relaxed approach of a social media surgery.

What’s your aim?

Our ultimate aim is to encourage more community groups and local charities to find good uses for Open data.  This is numerical information that government shares in public.  so we can have a better understanding of the places we live in and the way government works.  But we won’t throw you into anything difficult, we’ll start where you are and help you with the numbers and skills that matter to you.

Is there any information online?

As we work with people we’ll learn together how to solve problems. We’ll describe what we’re doing and share it here on the blog.  We will also be writing about things that might help you, tools, sites where data is stored, examples from other organisations.

I have no idea what you mean when you say open data!

Sorry – it is jargony.  Open government data is when government shares information on the internet that it owns  and grants you and I permission to use it (using an open government license) A simple example is local government releasing a monthly list of all spending over £500.  You can find the Dudley one here.  There is also a website called All About Dudley which contains all sorts of data. But don’t be phased by any of this – we want to help you develop the understanding and skills that might be useful for what you are trying to achieve.

Image credit: Auregann – shared on wikimedia commons