What we do in the Shadows with Meg from Indoorswomen

This episode I’m joined by Meg from the fabulous pop-culture podcast Indoorswomen. We talked about the 2014 vampire spoof What we do in the Shadows. I love this movie and Meg took part in the Kickstarter to get a US theatrical release of this distinctly New Zealand gothic parody. We completely spoil this movie so if you haven’t seen it before and you plan on watching it, watch it before you listen.

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Every few years a secret society in New Zealand gathers for a special event: The Unholy Masquerade.

In the months leading up to the ball a documentary crew was granted full access to a small group of this society.

Each crew member wore a crucifix and was granted protection by the subjects of the film.

References

The Conversation Review: http://theconversation.com/what-we-do-in-the-shadows-the-nz-gothic-with-sharp-comic-chops-30764

Some History of Gothic Parody: http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/view/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198119920.001.0001/acprof-9780198119920-chapter-5

 

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The Lady Pod Squad and Online Creative Communities

Header Image: Radio love by r2hox tm :CC BY-SA 2.0

Apple says that there are over 525,000 podcasts registered with Apple Podcasts (Locker 2018), formerly part of Itunes, and let me tell you the Apple Podcast registration can be a pain in the neck. There may be many who are just publishing to RSS feeds that haven’t jump through the necessary hoops for Apple Podcast listing.

So if you are one in those 525,000 how do you get people to listen?

And if you are new to podcasting how do you navigate the technical stuff without being sold something you really don’t need?

Creator communities are a great way to crowdsource the information needed to get started on a creative endeavour. There is a multitude of podcast communities designed to not only help by trading promos but also to share advice and collaborate.

Lady Pod Squad was started by Hannah from the Boozy Movies Podcast and it remains volunteer managed and no one directly profits from the squad, although some of the Lady Pod Squad members receive payment of some kind through their own podcast in the form of advertisement, merchandise and donations.

Lady Pod Squad functions as a Facebook Group, Twitter account, cross platform hashtag #ladypodsquad, Google drive and Slack channel.

Below is a tweet that includes #ladypodsquad in a promotion for an episode that features me and another member of the Lady Pod Squad. This hashtag can be tracked so that other Lady Pod Squad members can retweet. However, the easiest way to find other podcasts new episodes to share is on the Slack. The Slack is a workspace that makes it easier to track what new episodes other members have released so that it is easy to share the right ones on Twitter.

Here is another tweet of mine in which we credit the Lady Pod Squad drive for the promo we were able to run for 6 Degrees of Wiki. The promo drive is a great resource for sharing promos that you can download very simply and insert into your show and upload your own for similar inclusion in other people’s shows.

So why do these communities work?

How can they be sustainable when theoretically every podcast is competing for listenership on an increasingly competitive media platform?

The use of the creator communities on social media can be used to “accumulate group experience and knowledge through social interaction and information exchange behaviours.” (Wu, Li & Chang 2016). The exchange of experience, information and ideas result in a net positive for the group. Not only is there an informal skill exchange, but also the exchange of content and marketing between podcasters. The benefits of the creative networking for the individual are manyfold and include not only an improvement in the quality of their own work but also emotional support in the case of the Lady Pod Squad. Users of the Lady Pod Squad attest to the benefits of the creator community:

Female singer by Orion 8 and tatewaki • Public domain • modified by Morgan Pinder

Check out the podcast for more personal experiences with the Lady Pod Squad.

In addition to this Wu, Li & Chang assert that the use of social media to engage in creative producer communities build “individual habits of social learning within various groups; this helps to enhance the users’ creative performance.” (Wu, Li & Chang 2016).

The use of the Lady Pod Squad across media platforms to create collaborative content such as interviews, crossover episodes and content sharing is usually carried out in a reciprocal and mutually beneficial fashion. This is in line with Kaplan & Haelein’s ideas surrounding collaborative projects as a form of social media:

“The main idea underlying collaborative projects is that the joint effort of many actors leads to a better outcome than any actor could achieve individually” (Kaplan & Haenlein, 2010)

The Lady Pod Squad is just one example of a creative community that exists as a symbiotic network fostering creativity and assisting with social media marketing. No matter what you are creating there is sure to be a network of people out there sharing information and ideas…

Or make one yourself like Hannah did…

‘I guess my unique perspective is that I started this community when I noticed there was a lack of safe space & support for women in podcasting. I found amazing women who felt the same way and together we grew this group into a community. it’s really been an incredible journey and we’ve only been around a little over a year.’

~ Hannah from Boozy Movies Podcast and creator of Lady Pod Squad.

References

  • Kaplan, AM & Haenlein, M 2010, ‘Users of the world, unite! The challenges and opportunities of Social Media.’ Business Horizons, vol. 53 no. 1, pp.59-68.
  • Locker, M 2018, ‘Apple’s podcasts just topped 50 billion all-time downloads and streams’, Fast Company, 21st April 2018, retrieved 18th August 2018,
    <https://www.fastcompany.com/40563318/apples-podcasts-just-topped-50-billion-all-time-downloads-and-streams>
  • Wu, Y., Li, E.Y. & Chang, W. 2016, “Nurturing user creative performance in social media networks”, Internet Research, vol. 26, no. 4, pp. 869-900

 

Images

With thanks to the following podcasts:

6 Degrees of Wiki
Amanda’s Picture Show a Go Go
Bygones
Boozy Movies
Pups n Pop culture
Vibrant visionaries

 

Podcast

Music: Kelli’s Number by U.S. Army Blues is licensed under a Public Domain Mark 1.0 License
<http://freemusicarchive.org/music/US_Army_Blues/Live_At_Blues_Alley/0_-_08_-_The_US_Army_Blues_-_Kellis_Number>

Image: Megaphone, Elegant Themes, GPL, modified by Morgan Pinder
<https://commons.m.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Circle-icons-megaphone2.svg#mw-jump-to-license>

Dead Writers Society – Social Media and Posthumous Author Identity

Header Image By  Myrabella / Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0

Not to brag but I’m being followed by John Polidori, you know the guy that made vampires into an aristocratic phenomenon in the English gothic canon with his novella The Vampyre. It’s a pretty amazing feat as he’s been dead for nearly 200 years. Yes, there is someone out there using the account @johnwpolidori on Twitter to Tweet and Retweet online content pertaining to John Polidori and his associates. Doctor Polidori is one of the most tragic figures of the Romantic movement; perpetually living in the shadow of Lord Byron, eternally striving to create something that would capture the public imagination and eventually cut his own life short after a steep downward spiral.

It makes me incredibly happy that there is at least someone out there ensuring that his name is unforgotten in this age of social media. But if an author like Polidori is still represented what about the original celebrity, Lord George Gordon Byron?

The representation of Lord Byron on Twitter is more complex. Some of those who got in early and grabbed Byronic usernames are using them to promote their own poetry, as unrelated personal accounts, abandoned literary accounts and one successful racehorse. It seems that Byron and his identity have outgrown it literary legacy in a way that Polidori has not. The active Lord George Gordon Byron centric accounts are run by Byron Societies and Newstead Abbey, his former home. There is also one account actively sharing Byron related content that does not seem to have any commercial, personal or academic affiliation, @lordbyron_1824, this would be the closest to the previously mentioned Polidori account.

20180804_131206_0001
All images are in the public domain

But that’s Byron, what about the less celebrated in their time authors, those that are more appreciated now than in their day. Jane Austen for example. Female authors who were not identified by their portraits in their time like their male counterparts are now recognizable (Braun and Spiers, 2016). The female authors are now seen in this new age of social media that allows for the effortless reproduction of images.  Jane Austen has numerous accounts that claim affiliation, or just post quotes daily. These accounts might I add, are more popular than those of Byron.

So why do people still care about these authors, and why are there social media accounts dedicated to continuing their memorialization into an age of social media? Braun and Spiers (2016) talk about posthumous literary celebrity as being about so much more than the body of the artists work, but also of the image that they represent. Byron was a rebel, the first real celebrity, people paid for telescopes to watch him on holiday on Lake Geneva, women sent him their pubic hair and scandal followed him everywhere he went. But as far as an enduring literary legacy goes… well not many people have read his work compared with other less scandalous authors of his time. This is what makes him a character to emulate on social media, not because people are still reading Childe Harold.

Boeuf and Darveau (2017) talk about the power of association with a deceased celebrity; not only are audiences more receptive to messages ‘from’ dead celebrities, but that receptiveness can be leveraged for commercial gain. This might mean that any message purporting to be affiliated with a deceased literary figure with a substantial and continuing social legacy is given greater weight and will inevitably garner more interest than posts from a poet named Geoff from somewhere in Washington. These literary identities give the account a weight that they wouldn’t otherwise have. Users continue to engage with bots that simply spew out quotes from the pages of the greatest literature in the world into the ether, hoping for a knowing interaction.

 

References

  • Boeuf, B. and Darveau, J., 2017. Posting from beyond the grave: An autopsy of consumer attitudes toward promotional communication in a posthumous context. International Journal of Research in Marketing, 34(4), pp.892-900.
  • Braun, R. and Spiers, E., 2016. Introduction: re-viewing literary celebrity. Celebrity studies, 7(4), pp.449-456.

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