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Sharing my notes from the Technical Online Communicators Workshop 2013

TOCS2013 GangYPARD was invited at the TOCS2013 - Technical Online Communicators' Workshop organized by CGIAR on 27-31 May 2013.

Three young people in “web4agriculture” and members of YPARD were waived the fee for the workshop and therefore benefited from this unique opportunity to strengthen their technical skills and practices as young web communicators.

This chance not only opened the door to a one-week workshop but also to a dynamic Community of Practice (CoP) meant to carry on a long run to share experiences, best practices & solve each others’ problems through their online group!

The workshop covered a wide range of topics:

  • Bean Counting: the art of Monitoring&Evaluation and Google analytics
  • Fashion: the magics of HTML5
  • Web Hosting
  • Online Media Strategy and tools
  • SEO
  • Web Optimization
  • Web Revamp
  • Web Security
  • Web usability
  • An overview of the main CMS (content management systems)

Surprisingly, I was not that lost technically – the workshop had this positive of gathering BOTH content and technical people and therefore helped to understand each others’ perceptions and facilitate the communications among two different logics of “online communications”. That’s the way to go to optimize tools and practices around, for serving our overall purpose: fighting against poverty through agricultural development – let’s not forget!

It is only the end of the beginning. We all went back home with a lot of work to do. I personally gained from the broad overview it gave me on the scope of “jobs” that “online communications” includes. “None can be expert in everything and none can do everything” – it’s obvious but not easy to handle within a very restricted staff team. I need to prioritize our work better and find more people to work with. Nicely enough, I am already in contact with two of the CoPs’ Bean counting expert and Hardcore Geek to strengthen our M&E plans and some Websites instability.

Francis, another YPARD member, will be able to apply all the knowledge he got as he is soon to revamp the website of his organization – one of the most exciting and challenging web experiences ever (talking from experience)! 

Check Codrin’s blog post highlighting briefly but effectively key lessons he brought home from the workshop: What I learned from the #TOCS2013 workshop at @BioversityIntl on technical online communications

You can also go through my notes taken live during the workshop by checking my Storify Tweet string! A bunch of references, tips and tricks for web practices, you should get from there... I hope you’ll enjoy it and find it useful.