Posted by & filed under Open Letters.

Hi Dil,

Today I tweeted:

Let’s discuss. Especially ref UAL Wikipedia FABLAB connections.

You replied:

I have no idea what this means or refers to, or how to find out! I am going to need twitter lessons.

The abbreviations

I confess the message was somewhat “coded”. I apologise for that. It was written in haste on my phone during an event today. You can think of it as a reminder to myself of something I needed to share with you later – which I shall do now.

Joanna Norton had given a presentation at UK Africa Professional Educators’ Seminar (UKAPES).  The points I thought most potentially relevant to our work with Dadamac related to her students at University of the Arts London (UAL) in collaboration with Wikipedia (and FABLABs).  I’ll tell you more when we talk.

Twitter lessons

I’m not convinced you need lessons in using twitter (at least not at the basic level I use it) but nonetheless I shall take this opportunity to talk through this example, and then I’ll have the information to hand for anyone else who is getting started.

Sending a notification to your inbox

You, Dil, got a notification that I had sent the tweet because I mentioned you when I tweeted – 

Similarly John Dada (AKA  Nikki Fishman (AKA ) and Joannoa Norton ( will have had notifications in their inboxes.

Liking

I knew Joanna had seen the tweet when I got a notification that she had “liked” it.

#UKAPES

I did a series of tweets while I was at UKAPES.

I wanted the tweets to be easy to find, so I added the same link every time –  #UKAPES

Joanna was a speaker. She also tweeted about the event. She didn’t send that tweet to me directly but I know about it because she included #UKAPES in her message, so when I checked the #UKAPES link I found her tweet in the collection along with mine.

She wrote:

Fantastic to have been part of today. A group of teachers in the diaspora taking the initiative to develop in

By the way, in our context CPD stands for “Continuing Professional Development”, but for some other people it’s “Commission on Presidential Debates”.

#dadamac

I also used #dadamac so that all the information I was tweeting about UKAPES would be visible alongside other #dadamac tweets. I was at UKAPES representing Dadamac, plus Joyce the UKAPES co-organiser is a Dadamac Changemaker and so is Elfneh – who was also out the front. It’s good to get these things cross referencing each other.

If you check out #dadamac you”ll see a reference to elder care from today’s UKAPES and then, a week or so earlier, tweets that John sent about his eldercare work at Fantsuam. These tweets would just get lost in the twitter stream if we didn’t put them all together with #dadamac.

On my way home I picked up another Tweet from Joanna, which of course will also have landed in your inbox.

Lets arrange a time to meet up and I can share info. on these projects. Come to perhaps?

Joanna and I cross paths every now and again, but it’s a long time since we had a proper catch up. Now we’re on the way to arranging one, and through twitter you and John have been introduced to Joannna.

Will you join us at UniArtsLondon?

Spreading the word and connecting via hashtags

I checked #UKAPES when I started to write this post. Joanna and I were the only other person who had used it during the event, but before leaving I mentioned that I’d been tweeting and using #UKAPES.  I see that some of the people from the event have now visited #UKAPES and retweeted, which means what I wrote has been spreading through their twitter feeds.

Not only that, but thanks to information about who retweeted I’ve picked up the contact details of more people from the event who I want to follow on twitter.

Every little helps, and I like the way that if I do something on twitter it feels part of something bigger, where there is energy, where other people are joining in and where we are contributing together.