AudioBoo and you

I said I would get back to AudioBoo and here it is.

There were a lot of AudioBoo enthusiasts at the news:rewired conference in London on January 15 in the general session on social networking. That I hadn't really looked into it previously gave me a kick up the backside that as a lecturer in online journalism I must be far more on-the-ball when it comes to innovation.

So I checked out AudioBoo, which partially funded by Channel 4, which also supplies us with the excellent Jon Snow among many other things and is therefore OK by me.

What a magnificent application - Twitter for audio was how a colleague put it but I would have to say it is far more than that. Another colleague obsessed by radio has taken more interest in the web since hearing of this than in the last 18 months combined.

Basically you record audio through your computer or iPhone and can attach a picture and it uploads to your account almost instantaneously. Your post will also show where you were when this was done.

If you haven't got an iPhone, and I haven't, then you need to use PhoneBoo to upload. This limits you on the picture and GPS front but you can still do the audio.

I regard this as a huge breakthrough. It is so easy to use from both sides (ie as a 'broadcaster' and as a 'listener'). It has the appeal of Twitter with the added colour that audio and a picture can bring.

Some of the Boos from the G20 already show the appeal of this and I am sure it will have great value on less heavyweight arenas such as Glastonbury, travel etc etc. It is also very easy to embed audio into a site in the manner of YouTube, get an RSS feed and add tags.

I am all for anything which makes the tools of mass media available to everyone - Viva La Revolution.

The only thing now is that it has made me want to 'cheat' on my Nokia n95 for a iPhone and then I'll miss my Carl Zeiss lens and the MoJo appeal.

Where's the Web 2.0 interaction

Had a surprising lecture this morning.

In talking to students about citizen journalism - and specifically the self-publishing aspect of citizen journalism and its influence on mass media - it became apparant that very few students use Twitter, write blogs or post to YouTube.

They seemed amazed by the potential of it all and hadn't really thought beyond the social-networking applications of the sources.

I always assume that this sort of thing will be second nature to people in their late teens and early 20s but that was not the case this morning.

Still, I hope I might have changed their view slightly. Especially when I became evangelical about AudioBoo and its potential - more on that later.

Free (Government) Content

The Government has launched and we should all cheer.
As taxpayers we pay for this kind of material to be gathered and many people could make extremely good use of it so having it out there and available is a major boost.
The adviser was even www godhead Tim Berners-Lee who gave a good interview to the Guardian about the development and his involvement in it.
I now intend to trawl through and see how useful it can be but from a cynical hack's point of view, I expect the front page news to be about what isn't there rather than what is.


Being a journo and one specifically dedicated to the Internet I am fully aware of how immediate stuff is in the modern age.
David Beckham stubbs a toe and we have a flash, a ticker and a user-generated picture in seconds. A filthy company like Trafigura tries to circumvent democracy and the Twitternety achieves more in five minutes than the fourth estate could in five days.
You get the picture.
But it all came crashing home this week. I check Rightmove every day to see if there is a house for sale in my village. There never is but I am one hopeful bunny so I do it any anyway.
Last week I was at the news:rewired journalism conference in London and, due to technical difficulties, was unable to check Rightmove.
Big mistake and long story short the perfect house came up and the 24 hour delay lost us the home(that and some estate agent issues I won't share due to an inability to control my rage).
Lesson learnt - don't relax for a second.