Aren’t people wonderful? #huddsms

I must confess to some mild panic in the hours leading up to our first social media surgery but there was really no need – I was confident we could get a Booth in before 48 minutes. We had done our homework, had had several organisational meetings to cover the bases and – more importantly – had the support of some incredible people.

Steven Tuck at Huddersfield Social Media Surgery

by Tim Difford

I arrived at Huddersfield Media Centre a little later than I would have liked and was both surprised and delighted to find Chris Allan @subadog (the first of many surprise guests of the evening) there. Lots to talk about, I was still tinkering with the wifi settings when my first ‘patient’ arrived.

Tony heads up Slaithwaite and Marsden Action on Rail Transport – SMART, a community group who work to promote the needs of local people who use the train service. SMART already maintain an excellent web site built on wordpress which the group maintain themselves. Tony came to the surgery to find out how to make better use of wordpress and to discover ways to reach and involve more people.

After much talk of RSS, twitter and social networking it soon became clear that the informal time limit of 30 minutes per ‘patient’ had probably been a bit optimistic. I was pleased to see more surgeons arriving – some expected and some not. By 5pm the room was buzzing with activity. We couldn’t have hoped for a better start.

Next I helped a self published author who already has an excellent blog on blogspot to set up a wordpress account and

Gatecrasing #huddssms by John Popham

Gatecrasing #huddssms by John Popham

introduced some of the functionality before discussing the benefits of social networking, communities of interest and online group forming as a means to collaborative working and knowledge/experience sharing.

A 10 minute break gave me chance for a brief wander around the room. I was amazed and excited at the amount of activity

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I was moved at how all these people had given up their time and come together to offer their help and share their knowledge and look forward to reading their accounts of the evening. I have never been involved in anything quite like it before. Almost as staggering as the fact that I wasn’t following Lloyd Davis is that most of the contact with these people has taken place through the 140 character limit of twitter! That’s not to champion a piece of technology but to be amazed at how people have used it to create or contribute to something that I consider wonderful. A community of people – most of whom have connected via the social web – willing to pitch in and help out whenever and wherever they can.

There was much interest in any plans for future surgeries. After such a good start it is certainly my intention to be involved with more, and – as happened in Brum – I’m looking forward to seeing the ‘patients’ become the ‘surgeons’.



  1. Congratulations, Stephen on such a splendid event, and a great turnout. York SMS on December 9th will have a lot to live up to!

  2. Agreed… well done to you and all those involved in setting up the #huddsms event. I really enjoyed myself and everyone seemed to be thoroughly engaged in being a surgeon or undergoing surgery.


  3. Chris said

    I really enjoyed it. More then happy to do it again if I am in the area.
    Well done to those who organised it

  4. steventuck said

    Thanks chaps. I’ll certainly keep you all in the loop. It was you all that made it a success.

  5. […] Steve’s blog: Aren’t people wonderful? #huddsms […]

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