All posts by Susan Kleinwechter

Independent contractor in communications serving the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth as Social Media and Website Coordinator. Communications and Publications Coordinator at St. Martin-in-the-Fields Episcopal Church. Photographer at Lasting Memory Photography. Volunteer. Passionate Episcopalian. Technology advocate. Instigator.

Writing About the 2015 Episcopal General Convention

Who, me? Write? I’m not a Reporter!

by Susan Kleinwechter, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

It might have gone down like this: the bishop said, “You folks are all going to write during General Convention, and we are going to publish it. We’re not waiting until we get home.” Blank stares around the room, curt, affirmative nods, except from the excited communications director, who worked late into the night to get a small team very busy on the how. (There will be more on that). Did something like that happen with your convention possee?

For the next few weeks, deputies and alternates from all over the country are asked to become content creators and to publish things digitally. So here are some basic instructions for folks who are writing and publishing:

  1. You must contribute.
  2. Write about what is going on.
  3. Write about the context surrounding what is going on.
  4. Write what you think about what is going on.
  5. Write about how you feel about what is going on.
  6. Write about your spiritual experiences, connections and revelations. Continue reading Writing About the 2015 Episcopal General Convention

Who, me? You say I should “be social” at General Convention?

The Strategy of Using Social Media at the Episcopal General Convention

by Susan Kleinwechter, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

The 78th General Convention of the Episcopal Church brings the opportunity for participants to share so much of their experiences in the governance of TEC and the shaping of the future of the church. And it is vital to do so, in ways perhaps unfamiliar to many. It’s insufficient in 2015 to simply go home and write a 2-page reflection and publish it along with the rest of your July news and email or snail-mail it to your normal recipients in your newsletter. Yes, by all means, do that, but do more, and do it during General Convention.

The “more” is important. It is vital to the life of our church in a time that we so clearly need to grow and reach further, especially to younger audiences, ones that will become the leadership of our church. It is vital to help “folks at home” understand the topics and discussions and decisions that shape our church. It is important that we do this in a social context, because that’s where our reach is both strategic and effective.

It is heartening that so many dioceses have launched their convention publishing initiatives and sites, realizing why social media coverage is so important now:

  • Social networking has twice the click-throughs as email, reaching more of your audience.
  • Conversation about a subject engages more people than reporting about a subject.
  • Pictures and videos elicit more engagement than other forms of digital publication.
  • Social networking is a powerhouse for encouraging online engagement, improving and driving how people connect to your information.
  • When people feel more connected, they participate more and give more.

Continue reading Who, me? You say I should “be social” at General Convention?

Handy WordPress Tutorials for 2015 General Convention

Good stuff to get you started being a General Convention blogger

by Susan Kleinwechter, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

Not everyone on our deputation is familiar with our website platform WordPress, so we’ve found some information for our self-starting deputies to equip themselves with the details of posting in our General Convention blog.

We’ve found the handiest bunch of video tutorials: WordPress101Tutorials 

Capturing Video to Tell Your Episcopal General Convention Story

Tips for Flips and Smartphones

by Susan Kleinwecher, Social Media Coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

Publishing video to explain and show your event is a great way to cKeep it steady! Pan slowly!onnect to your audience. Using your smartphone, tablet, or Flip video camera is an easy way to capture your video. Planning for success includes understanding the capabilities and limitations of these recording devices and how to overcome them.

Smartphones and Tablets: Most mobile device users take decent HD video. Most mobile devices capture poor sound, because the internal microphone is not powerful. Having said that, we always use what we have, because the worst camera ever is the one you don’t have with you. The major challenges while shooting are stability and lighting. This article offers easy-to-read, common-sense tips for lighting and stability, as well as overcoming the limitations of your camera’s sensors: Continue reading Capturing Video to Tell Your Episcopal General Convention Story

Using Facebook for 2015 Episcopal General Convention

by Susan Kleinwechter, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

What Facebook is: Facebookit’s the largest social network in existence, used more than any other on the planet.

Not on Facebook? GetStarted! Go to facebook.com and create an account. Set up your account, upload your image/avatar. Find some friends! You’ll find people you know on Facebook, along with organizations you care about. Need help? Facebook has help here; you bet they want you to understand and succeed using their services. One good tutorial if you’re not familiar with Facebook is Facebook 101 from the Goodwill Community Foundation; they walk you through various privacy settings in your account and help you master posting.

Connect with the Diocese: Go to facebook.com/DioFW and “Like” the diocese page. This will allow you to receive updates to the page and post to the page.

Post to our Diocesan Facebook Page: Our page allows posts by fans. Go for it! Post your resources, information, and links to blogs on our page; post to your personal profile as well. Page admins may re-post your information to extend its reach. Continue reading Using Facebook for 2015 Episcopal General Convention

Using Pinterest for 2015 Episcopal General Convention

You mean I can Pin about GC78? Sweet!

by Susan Kleinwechter, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

What Pinterest is: CNET says, “If Tumblr and StumbleUpon had a baby, they would likely give birth to Pinterest. Pinterest is a virtual bulletin board with pins; users grab things from around the internet and pin them to boards. Boards, owned by a user, possibly with other contributors, are the organization tool, organized loosely around a topic or interest. The shareable content is called a pin; it is usually an image of some kind, with a description, links, and descriptive tags. In Pinterest the focus is on on quality images. It’s about (1)content (2)sharing and (3)sharing & commenting. Got that? Sharing is real big on pinterest. Continue reading Using Pinterest for 2015 Episcopal General Convention

Tweeting about the 2015 Episcopal General Convention

A short primer on Twitter, suitable for any deputation, but written for @diofw tweeps

by Susan Kleinwechter, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

Convention deputies and anyone tweeting about convention will use a personal accounts, not our diocesan twitter account @diofw. We want a lot of voices tweeting!

@DioFW on Twitter!

Getting Started: At twitter.com, create an account, select a username, and in your profile, upload a photo that looks like you.  In your account settings, do NOT protect your tweets (you may change that in a month).

Tutorial: Twitter Tutorial from gcflearnfree.org

Connect with the diocese: search for and follow @diofw. @Diofw will add all tweeters in our deputation to a public, subscribable twitter list: @diofw/GC78. The list aggregates our General Convention deputation Twitter voices. Other people can subscribe to it – learn how to subscribe to/follow other people’s lists or create and manage your own at Twitter’s help article Using Twitter lists. Continue reading Tweeting about the 2015 Episcopal General Convention

The Social Media Challenge, Resolution D069, as seen from afar

Something interesting happened at General Convention, and even though I am not present in Indy, I have followed resolution D069 and am compelled to write about it. D069 is, in spirit and intent, a sibling resolution to A025. These resolutions read:

A025 passed by the House of Deputies: “Resolved, the House of Bishops concurring, that the 77th General Convention of the Episcopal Church challenges every congregation in The Episcopal Church to have an effective, dynamic and current website by 2015.”

D069: “Resolved, the House of _______ concurring, That the 77th General Convention of The Episcopal Church challenge every diocese and congregation in The Episcopal Church to actively engage social media in its current and future manifestations.”

You may need these definitions:

GC77: the 77th General Convention of the Episcopal Church
Chsocm: church social media
OYP: official youth presence
Tweep: person on twitter

Before I went to sleep last night I read a Twitter conversation (yes, all conversations in Twitter are public, except for Direct Messages). It started with this proposal:

Caroline Carson ‏@Conductor222 @TheRevEJ @stevepankey I suggested testifying about soc media VIA soc media! I think that wld be great! #keepmeposted

The Rev. Erin Jean ‏@TheRevEJ Abt DO69-Someone cld take their 2 mins to share testimonies offered via twitter? #GC77 testimonies could use hashtag #do69? @stevepankey ?

Affirmations that “testimony by Twitter” was an idea worth pursuing rolled in. Tweeps, from far and wide, listening to #GC77 conversation on Twitter, started chiming in with their thoughts about the importance of the church’s participation in social media.  Now, if you think this conversation was just by young adults at convention, but you’re mistaken. Bishops, grandparents, older people proclaiming their advanced age, teenagers from the Official Youth Presence, folks from everywhere chatted about #D069 online late into the night and beginning again in the early morning.  They shared their ideas in 140 characters or less. They tweeted links to their blogs where they had already written about social media’s role in the church today.  Some wrote new blog posts to give information to those who would speak at the morning committee hearing.

I put my personal thoughts out there after 11pm Texas Time, using my Twitter handle @skwechter, in 140-character-or-less chunks, but I’ll kindly spare you the text-message shorthand I used:

  • Episcopalians have always used available technology for evangelism.
  • Social media isn’t a quirky playground, it can be used strategically.
  • Church social media is as much an idea space as a coffee shop is, full of conversation between real people separated by geography and time.
  • Social media puts a church/christian where people ALREADY are.
  • “Willful ignorance” of social media is no longer an option.
  • Demographically, the younger people TEC needs to reach often DON’T WANT to be reached by email.
  • Don’t use http://episcopalchurch.org  as example of socially integrated website; the only way to get info is email subscription.
  • episcopalchurch.org and its email-only media releases showcase how to be completely disengaged from 2012 Cchurch social media (yes, I really tweeted that).
  • There’s so much ground to cover with church social media that our churches need to be challenged to enter the social media arena.
  • Wake up the Official Youth Presence to speak about church social  media relevance.
  • A priest friend says “I’ve done more ministry through my blog and Facebook than any other way since retiring.”

Then I went to bed.

Before I made it to my keyboard late this morning, I knew something interesting had happened, because my phone buzzed. There was a Twitter direct message from DioFW seminarian Jordan Haynie (@GodWelcomesAll); she had quoted me in testimony before the Communications Committee.  Great, I thought, hopefully not the jabs at episcopalchurch.org about their frustrating lack of social media integration on their brand-spanking-new website.  But I learned from following #GC77 on Twitter that something remarkable had happened in the 07:35am communications committee hearings this morning.  Here are some of the Twitter conversation and before, during, and after the hearings:

@TheRevEJ RT @stevepankey: #D069 tweetup #GC77 http://t.co/UB24r3Rd   (ßThat’s a picture)

@#amyphaynie #gc77 #chosm twitter allows me to be present in one committee while “listening in” on others and praying for those also.

@billjoseph “While parishes may not be on FB and Twitter, there are people on FB and Twitter who are not in our parishes”. Well said #D069 #GC77

@Conductor222 #d069 Twitter is enabling me to feel like I have a voice even though I’m not at #GC77 I have a vested interest & it helps.

@stevepankey “Our baptismal covenant challenges us to take Jesus where people are, and people are online.” #OYP at #D069 tweetup #GC77

@EPFYoungAdults #d069 what we do is talk about Jesus. The Church has always mastered communication and we need to master this media. #weneedchange #gc77

@EMjennielle This  RT @Conductor222: @TheRevEJ #DO69-blog post on#GC77 & Social Media. Hope y’all find it useful/interesting:http://t.co/iDwPBOTC

@EPFYoungAdults #d069 Episcopal generations speaks to the need for youth and elders to inform each other. #weneedchange #gc77

@episcovol My 3rd GC as an observer from my nursing chair (w 4 different babes) #GC75 #GC76-mostly bloggers #GC77 tweeters have brought it closer #D069

@Conductor222 #chsocm #DO69 #GC77 Relationships are being formed that are affecting me positively in my faith & theological development, I am inspired!

@PamelaGRW “Jesus went out into the marketplace” The marketplace right now is online. #GC77 #D069

@GodWelcomesAll Chair Sherrod: Twitter turned out more people for this hearing than we’ve had for any other. #gc77 #d069 #chsocm #benotafraid

@EPFYoungAdults  @TheRevEJ social media is not an addition 2 evangelism. It is evangelism. It’s the language of the future we need to learn.#gc77 #d069

@scottagunn @KatieSherrod3, chair of cmte, suggests that we change sign-in sheet to include twitter handles. #GC77 #GettingModern

@JosephPMathews we want to be clear that social media should not replace face2face communication. #gc77 #benotafraid #D069

@stevepankey: “Our baptismal covenant challenges us to take Jesus where people are, and people are online.” #OYP at #D069 tweetup #GC77

@EPFYoungAdults: #d069 Episcopal generations speaks to the need for youth and elders to inform each other. #weneedchange #gc77

@GodWelcomesAll Chair Sherrod just referenced trolls as she names community policing as a safeguard. #gc77 #d069 #benotafraid

@TheRevEJ No one showed up to speak against #do69 … That’s the future!#GC77

@theologybird: #D069 goes forward with motion to adopt. #GC77

@colinmchapman   @scottagunn forgot to mention that @katiesherrod3 also spoke out against trolls #gc77 #thingsyouneverthoughtyoudhereinTEC

@KatieSherrod3 #gc77 The Twitterverse showed up at our Communications hearing. Wonderful testimony and witnessing! http://t.co/Rq8HhjiG

@dianabutlerbass: #GC77 I’m (way) over 35, love words & nuanced ideas & I tweet! Loving that this GC is available via social media. More, please!

Being at home instead of Indy, I don’t know whether the committee needed much convincing, since they had already grappled with A025. But the committee’s decision to send D069 forward was heartening, cementing their belief in the relevance of newer communication channels to the ministry of our church. The creative way in which people of all ages from all places collaborated to fuel the speakers who awoke early to stand before a microphone in a hearing was inspring.  #GettingModern #BeNotAfraid #WeNeedChange #ThingsYouWillHearMoreAboutInTEC #AndGodGrinned

 

Handy WordPress Tutorials for General Convention 2012

Good stuff to get you started being a General Convention blogger

 

–by Susan Kleinwechter, social media coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth

Whoopee! Found the handiest bunch of video tutorials to equip our deputation with the details of posting in our General Convention blog: WordPress101Tutorials 

WordPress 101 – What is WordPress
WordPress 101 – The Dashboard
WordPress 101 – Admin Bar
WordPress 101 – Exploring Settings
WordPress 101 – Posts vs. Pages
WordPress 101 – Creating Posts
WordPress 101 – Adding Links
WordPress 101 – Adding Images
WordPress 101 – Formatting Posts
WordPress 101 – Scheduling Posts
WordPress 101 – Categories and Tags

 Are there other WordPress resources you have discovered to help anyone getting started ? Please share them!