“New media is a term meant to encompass the emergence of
digital, computerized, or networked information and communication
technologies in the latter part of the 20th century.” – Wikipedia
HoustonNewMedia.org encourages the effective use of New Media platforms for the exchange of local information, resources and support to benefit the Greater Houston Community. Our community includes proactive leaders and supporters which serve as an exhaustive public resource to encourage the proper leveraging of all New Media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and other mediums for the exchange of local information, resources, and support to benefit of the Greater Houston community as a whole, and without regard to party or personal creed. One Houston.
How Important Is Social Media in Houston?
In September of 2008 In the wake of Hurricane Ike Houstonians witnessed the importance of togetherness, the value of rapid sharing of information, resources and support in our neighborhoods, at the work place and social circles. It is this spirit of togetherness from which HoustonNewMedia.org was formed.
Just one month prior to Hurricane Ike’s landfall, the Houston Chronicle published an article on August 7, 2008
entitled “Harris County’s population nears 4 million“. Writer James Pinkerton reported on US Census data which showed that Houston, as “one of the most diverse regions of the nation”, is very large and sprawling with “no sign of stagnation”.
While it is easy to see that this places a growing demand on city government to provide infrastructure to meet growth, the lesser reported story is the increasing challenge for individual members of the community to keep up with what is happening within their own community, especially newcomers, and the isolation a single individual can feel amidst a population of over 4 million due to gaps in communication which are created by the sprawl.
Many small local networks exists in the forms of church groups and civic organizations, but few have placed communications with outside groups very high in their list of priorities, leaving communications blackouts, or gaps, to be filled, which continue to increase as the city sprawls.
It will take a “network of networks”, focused on interactive communication via the most effective means available to bridge the gaps created by the region’s rapid growth, to embrace the growth and embrace our city’s diversity, and improve the quality of life for Houstonians. HoustonNewMedia.org exists with the purpose of filling in the gaps using social media primarily.
To illustrate, if Houston were a human body, and each of us a single “cell”, then Houston’s “nervous system” is the local media, both industrial media, and social media. Industrial media, or mass media, includes TV, Radio, and Newspapers, which are all effective for getting the word out but they are also generally one-way modes of communication, let alone expensive. Social media is a more interactive form of electronic communication which allows every single voice to be heard, and gives each individual a means to express his or her own thoughts, needs, wants, hopes, dreams, problems, fears, challenges, potential, likes, and dislikes.
By properly leveraging social media businesses and other organizations have a unique opportunity to show a genuine interest in individual audience members which triggers positive word of mouth advertising at no cost. This provides invaluable feedback data for businesses and organizations which is not readily available through other means. How do you know what people want unless you listen? If your organization does not properly leverage social media in the decision making and planning processes, you’re only guessing, and you are missing out on opportunities every day!