Live blog of Ben Hammersley talk at Frontline Club. – excuse typos/errors….

QUESTION (supplied by Graham Holliday and delivered by me)

You had 91 twitter folowers, but you ‘follow’ just 2

Yu posted 44 pictures on flickr, but got few comments

You had 110 subs on YouTube , 6,000 views, few comments, but replied twice

The blog did not allow comments at all.

Only 20 Facebook ‘friends’

Beyond any comments you may have made on blogs, as far as I can tell, you “interacted” exactly seven times – one comment on YouTube and six replies – including one to Richard Sambrook and another to The Guardian’s Neil McIntosh – on Twitter.

With this in mind – and the fact that you and the BBC called this a social media experiment – how social was it really?

Ben’s Answer (paraphrased):

The story was not ‘pushed’ by the BBC.

Not that many people are interested in Turkish politics.

These were not successful traffic/ interaction figures, yes.

But the real point was that from the page, 80% of the content there was built were built with social media tools / public tools

All were consumer social media tools.

In essense it was an internal facing project.

The vast majority of the content was not run off BBC software.

The key thing is – there is a huge driving force from the IT dept to do only stuff built ‘in house’

But this is done specifically on tools which were free, simple and available now.

So the question was can we get this thing into the BBC site under the radar?

Asnwer – yes – that was a huge success.

Yes, we screwed up a lot – it wouldn’t have been an experiment otherwise.

We did the behind the scenes videos in black and white on YouTube to separate them from BBC editorial.

[Q: What about lack of comments on the blog?]

Very little added value would have come from comments . Mark Mardel’s blog has been great but “every single comment thread has gone to shit.”


British Libel law prevented us from allowing coomments. And it was on MY BLOG and I didn’t want to get sued.