You may or may not have noticed CyArk's presence in a few new places around the web. We have begun making a concerted effort to reach out to a broader internet audience by spreading the CyArk mission on social sites like Twitter and Facebook. These sites also allow us to encourage user-submitted and user-generated content, which before now, didn't have a home within the CyArk Archive. If you're not familiar with these types of social sites, or CyArk's foray into them, the following links and short descriptions will help you become more familiar with the "Social Webs".
Flickr is an image and video hosting website, and online community platform. It has allowed us to reach out to a community of photographers, both amateur and professional, who are interested in the work we do. We've also come across some very creative individuals on Flickr who post photos of archaeologically inspired
projects. One of my favorites is this Lego Archaeology
photo album. We'll then often share these fun finds via Twitter.
Visit CyArk's Flickr page
Twitter is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that enables users to send and read short messages known as "tweets". Using Twitter has allowed us to provide quick updates on the day to day activities of CyArk that wouldn't otherwise necessitate a full-fledged blog entry. Twitter user's who opt to follow us even have the option of receiving our news directly on their phones via a text message.
Visit CyArk's Twitter page
Panoramio is a geolocation-oriented photo sharing website. It is similar to Flickr but offers the added benefit of including our content on Google Maps. This feature creates the unique opportunity for users to stumble across our images while also getting a satellite's eye view of cultural heritage sites.
Visit CyArk's Panoramio page
Facebook is a global social networking website that enables users to add friends, send them messages, and update their personal profiles to notify friends about themselves. Additionally, users can join networks organized by city, workplace, school, and region, as well as interact with businesses, non-profits, and other user-created organizations. Facebook allows for a very broad range of social interactions with other Facebook users who are interested in what we do. Updates, conversations, trivia (Guess that Heritage Site!), and even contests (see below) are common occurrences on our Facebook page.
Visit CyArk's Facebook page.
Picasa is a photo-sharing website that also allows users to upload and geolocate their images. It is similar to Panoramio and offers yet another potential outlet for new users to discover our content.
Visit CyArk's Picasa page
YouTube is a video-sharing website that pioneered free hosting for video content on the internet. YouTube not only serves a majority of the video content found on CyArk.org (at not cost to CyArk), but it also provides a way for anyone to share or embed our video content on their own sites, further spreading our mission.
Visit CyArk's YouTube page
These sites allow CyArk to leverage already existing platforms as a means to further disseminate our information and spread cultural awareness at little to no cost. They also allow us to interact with new groups of people in new and interesting ways. For example, we recently held a photo competition on Facebook. Contestants submitted creatively photoshopped images of their favorite cultural heritage sites and we displayed them on CyArk's Facebook page
. Other users then voted on their favorites and a winner was chosen. Facebook allowed for a much more fluid social exchange than we could have offered on CyArk.org, as well as enabled us to maintain the integrity of the content within our archive.
We will continue to develop our presence throughout the social web, so stay tuned for further developments, and please be sure to visit us, follow us, and befriend us at our new locations.