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Diane Gilleland originally shared:
 
I really like Google+, but I find myself wanting more out of this experience than what I'm getting from other social media channels. I think the craft community stands to take some interesting new directions over here, if only we could stop imposing our habitual social media modes onto this very flexible and powerful tool.

What kinds of conversations do you wish you were having on Google+ with other artists and crafters?
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Debra Charlesworth's profile photoKate England's profile photoDiane Gilleland's profile photo
8 comments
 
A few of us have been talking about starting up just this kind of Hangout for crafters, so hopefully there will be several new entries in this category soon!

Your conversation experiences here are interesting, because you're one of the people I perceive as having deep conversation all the time in this space! But then again, I think G+ is lacking that "critical mass" of active, regular participants, at least in the creative community, and that must lead to good discussion happening less often

I can't help wondering whether this stems from our current preoccupation with small craft business marketing (in the indie craft world, anyway). The default mode for so many creatives on social media these days seems to be promotion - at least, from the tone of my unfiltered Twitter feed. And it's pretty hard to broadcast effectively on G+, so I'm seeing many folks give up the ghost.

...And fragmenting? YES. I knew that the only way to start a convo about G+ was on my blog, and promoting that through Twitter, and then reposting it here. Smatters of good discussion are happening in all three locations now. :-/
 
Hangouts sound interesting! I'm actually not sure what to make of Google+ yet and would love to hear more about creative ways to use it. I think one problem is, that there isn't much of a conversation here yet, but hey, we can make that happen.
 
I suspect that the way to make it happen is for those of us who care about it to start modeling the behaviors we'd like to see here. I've made myself a topical calendar, and will be trying to start one good discussion here each week. Some will catch fire, and some won't, but at least it'll be a demonstration of an alternate way to use this tool for conversation!
 
That's a fantastic idea and I'll be interested to see the environment you create! Three things that I'd like to see in social media is 1) depth and discussion 2) the web has got so nicheified, everyone in their own interest group which is great (to find like-minded people), marketable, but can become a bit stagnant and predictable, so it can be very inspiring when people come together from different backgrounds too 3) an environment that feels spontaneous, that doesn't turn into an obligation.
 
Wow, that's a huge idea: "the web has got so nicheified, everyone in their own interest group which is great (to find like-minded people), marketable, but can become a bit stagnant and predictable, so it can be very inspiring when people come together from different backgrounds too"

AMEN. This is what Twitter did for me, back when there was just a handful of people there and we were all busy talking instead of marketing. it's a lot harder to create that "discovery zone" now. I do like that I can view my feed here in individual Circles, or as one big stream mixing everything crafty and non-crafty.
 
Yes, I can see that happen too. The social media channels becoming more of a market place...

I suppose another thing that happens when areas become commercialised, is that they also tend to become more streamlined and same? Everyone following the same formula, the same tutorials, and being creatively inspired by the same arts and crafts? It can even be reflected in the language used? And even hobbies can be taken very seriously. Maybe we need some space to simply play? Play with ideas, thoughts, things we do, our creativity...

I love your idea of a "discovery zone".
 
Absolutely - all of this online, user-created media is so subtle and so flexible (and still so new) that our nature is to quickly evolve a set of rules that helps them make sense. Add to this a landscape where it's never been easier to hang out your own shingle, and it's a total recipe for homogenization. But luckily, since we're all driving this thing and not a small group of giant corporate interests, at least we get to change directions at any time.

That idea of "play space" is awesome. I think that's what the earliest craft blogs were all about, and part of why they felt so compelling at the time.
 
Great post, Diane. Lots to digest. I'm hoping to have some time for some creative thought in this area in the next few weeks (but then again... professional life does beckon me...)
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