Storify – My Test Drive

While I grabbed a Storify account some time back, I hadn’t really done much more than explore it at a fairly basic level. However, I finally took the plunge and decided to take a new approach to summarizing one of my favourite PLN discussions, #chat2lrn.

In concept, the Storify concept is simple: search for whatever you want, and turn it into a “story” of related events, news items, media clips, whatever.   Add in your own commentary, reassemble at will, and you can create your very own amalgamated/aggregated digital artifact.

This was a good learning experience for me because I wanted to find a way to catch up on the tweets and draw some of my own conclusions, particularly because I wasn’t able to stay for the whole chat.The challenge of searching by hashtag alone became quite obvious, but thanks to the relatively consistent structure of these chats, I could start focusing a bit more.

My first bit of learning was to make sure I wasn’t showing any of the RTs. They’re great for helping to publicize the chat outside the usual clan of participants, but they’re just clogging up the raw feed after the fact.  Even then, there’s still a lot of traffic to sift through.  So, I decided to follow some of the established conventions within this chat and focus my search by question.  That actually worked nicely because I could focus on the responses and queries that each question generated.  It was almost like seeing a real-time transcript of a conversation, but with better understanding/context of the connections between participants.

The ongoing dilemma with tools like Storify and any other curation effort is that it can be time-consuming.  Yes, an absolutely valuable exercise if you want to go back and reflect on a discussion or pick up on things you may have missed. However, its apparent to me that it’s time that needs to either be available (or made more efficient) to partake of this kind of learning.  Such is the challenge of the L&D professional in our increasingly time-poor work weeks.  The other dilemma for the potential consumer is that they are only seeing your take on the conversation.  If you follow constructivist teachings, you know that we all create our own “realities” and your selected pluckings from the Tweet-stream only represent one participant’s view.   To be honest, I’m not sure how we achieve a reasonable balance between individual viewpoints and a critical curation.

All that said, I liked what Storify offered and I like it’s potential.  We have the capacity to become storytellers through these artefacts, and – properly considered – can offer and embrace differing viewpoints.  My only tech-specific criticism is that it lacks a mobile app.


About Mark L. Sheppard

learning geek, lifelong learner, terminally curious, recovering blogger and Ed Tech explorer.

Posted on October 12, 2012, in backchannel, chat2lrn, commentary, learning, PKM, PLN, reflection, Storify, Technology, thoughts, Twitter and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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