SoMe promotes dialogue offline, to spark conversations online.
SoMe is an event, activity or workshop that uses the functions and features of social media as a mechanism to facilitate face-to-face dialogue. It is designed to generate discussion about social issues and participation can inspire digital and social inclusion. Volunteers write ‘Tweets’ and Profile pages about themselves that act as the catalyst to inspire another person to engage them in conversation. After the conversation, the participant is asked to evaluate their experience in 140 characters. Although the catalyst for conceiving and developing SoMe was our work around community and social issues, we know that the concept has the potential to facilitate dialogue in many different ways, so we are currently exploring all possibilities.
I volunteered at the first ever SoMe event in Middlesbrough. At first I was a little nervous and I didn’t know what to expect. We had the training and after creating the ‘tweet’ and ‘profile’ it felt more real. I was one of the first people chosen and after the chat it was amazing. I felt great and much more confident and open. I cannot wait to volunteer at another SoMe event.
Becky Dean, SoMe Volunteer, Middlesbrough
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SoMe events may be themed around a specific social issue, such as mental health, homelessness, interfaith, multiculturalism, LGBTIQ. Events can also raise awareness of a specific organisation at events such as open days or inductions. SoMe can also be used as a workshop to encourage dialogue or discussion at a conference, or as a consultation exercise. At each event the use of a hashtag can help the event to initiate or join a wider conversation online. You can use the SoMe Twitter handle @SoMeEvent, the hashtag #SoMe, or create your own SoMe hashtag such as #SoMeBlackHistoryMonth. Depending upon wifi and 3G connections, you can tweet the live responses at your event and use them to encourage people to visit.
The Wall, Chat Room and Message Board.
A SoMe event will typically be held in a public space which is divided into three physical spaces: The Wall, The Chat Room, and The Message Board. Members of the public are invited to browse ‘The Wall’ and read ‘profiles’ of the volunteers. The profiles are printed, and contain a speech bubble that says something about each volunteer in 140 characters, a bit like a ‘Tweet’ or ‘Status Update’. The profile is completed by 9 boxes of basic information one might find on a Facebook profile, such as favourite book, film, hobbies etc.
Based on the profile, members of the public can choose to meet volunteers in ‘The Chat Room,’ a physical space where respectful conversations take place. This is located between ‘The Wall’ and ‘The Message Board,’ the evaluative area where members of public are invited to leave responses and feedback about their experience. This can be in the form of ‘Tweets’, ‘comments’ and ‘likes’ which are handwritten or typed, and posted to the Message Board, where they can then be commented on further, or shared via real social media platforms.
SoMe, so you.
SoMe is a relatively new concept that we can offer as part of equality and diversity initiatives and celebrations, or as training event or workshop. The Outsiders provide events and training to commission and have worked with a wide range of organisations including local authorities, housing associations, schools, charities, the Police and universities.
Our event package includes:
- Volunteer training.
- Management of SoMe event in workplace, conference or public setting.
- A full evaluative report (optional).
Our training package is:
- SoMe training for organisers (1 day).
Contact Us for more information.