Following on from the success of TeaCamp in London and BrewCamp in Birmingham, I am now looking to bring this concept to the North.
TeaCamp (see here) is a regular, informal meeting of London-based people who use the internet and social media to help the public sector do more interesting things and do what they already do more effectively. The concept has also been successfully transplanted to the West Midlands, where BrewCamp brings together people from local government, police, NHS and other parts of the public sector to support each other in their pioneering work with the internet and social media.
TeaCamp / BrewCamp are held in the early evening, after work, in a coffee shop with wifi, and continue the longstanding tradition of people getting together over a cuppa and a piece of cake to chew the fat. They normally involve one or more people giving a little talk about an interesting project, or something they feel passionate about, and often result in people being able to help each other overcome obstacles, and perhaps even work on joint projects.
Being an internet or social media pioneer in the public sector can be a lonely process, so the principal aim of these events is help people get some mutual support. If something more concrete comes out of it, that is a bonus. Following TeaCamp and BrewCamp events, Twitter is normally full of people expressing their joy about meeting people face-to-face in similar circumstances to themselves. Archived live video of the latest BrewCamp can be found here.
So, do you work with the internet and / or social media in the public sector in the North West, Yorkshire or the East Midlands? and, if so, would you be interested in an informal get together on a monthly basis in the early evening (say 5:30-8pm)?
I am looking to run CuppaCamp North in Leeds and Manchester, and my good friend and esteemed colleague, Paul Webster is testing the water about support for a MashCamp East Midlands (if you don’t know “Mashing” is a term used for brewing tea in parts of the East Midlands and South Yorkshire). If you think this is something you might be interested in being part of (you don’t have to commit yourself to anything), then please add your name to this Google Doc. There are three separate tables, for Leeds, Manchester and East Midlands. Feel free to add yourself to more than one table if you could attend in either location.
If there is enough support I will go about sorting venues which will be in the city centres in Leeds, Manchester and whichever of the East Midlands cities is most convenient to attendees.