Thank you for reading my inaugural post. Let's get to it:
This week, the Pew Research Center released it's findings about Arts Organizations and Digital Technology, surveying how 1,244 arts organization of all sizes, genres and budgets use technology. After reading (all 65 pages), I got REALLY excited about applying new media techniques, mobile apps, intuitive website design, location-based mobile video performances, text message fundraising campaigns, and california-cool hoodies to the arts world.
Then I remembered - it's the arts world.
Don't get me wrong, there is creative desire abounding in arts orgs. However, according to Pew, 97% of arts orgs say they have a social media presence. But only 25% post more than once per day on facebook. So let's rephrase: 25% of arts orgs have a social media presence. C'mon arts people, get with the times.
How many arts websites do you see that are testing the limits of technology? (no really....comment and tell us the arts orgs that are doing it well!) Lots of orgs have a facebook page, many have a twitter account. Do you know any that are utilizing them in a cool/unique way? I'm talking tweeting live concert notes, creating their own mobile app, crowdsourcing their next programming decision. I wonder, are the people promoting Mozart, Dylan, Cage, Stravinsky, Pavlova, et all, afraid to test their own boundaries? Why can a bunch of techies in Palo Alto do things that are cooler and more hip than a bunch of self-proclaimed artists?
Pew tells us that 77% of arts orgs strongly or somewhat agree that digital technology has played a major role in broadening the boundaries of what is considered art. Yet only 52% use social media to crowdsource ideas for their own programming. Half isn't bad. But considering the importance digital technology plays in redefining art, why aren't more arts orgs making this a huge priority? If you're out there, reading my first post ever, I challenge you to read some of the examples in the Pew survey, try one out, and write to tell me what happens!