Moving at the Speed of Creativity by Wesley Fryer

Why email is NOT good enough for communication today

Email is an example of “one to one” (or one to a defined many) communication. When you send an email, you have to specify the recipients in the TO, CC, and BCC fields of your message. While your email message COULD be forwarded on to others (resulting in a greater distribution) and along the line someone (or an automated program) COULD post your message to a website, generally most email messages have an inherently LIMITED distribution. The graphic below was created by two of our Oklahoma Creativity Institute participants on Wednesday to illustrate this idea of limited, or “one to a defined many” communication. They created this on my iPad using the Brushes app.

One to One (or a defined many) communication

Full attribution:

These images were created by Donna Barnard, art teacher at Westmore High School in Moore Public Schools, Oklahoma, and Carol Dvorak, art teacher at Carver Middle School in Tulsa Public Schools, Oklahoma. Created with the Brushes for iPad app.

When a message, a link, an image, an audio file or a video is posted to a website, however, that content becomes an example of “one to an undefined many” communication. The same teachers created the following graphic to illustrate this concept today.

One to an undefined many communication

Using a “QuickStart Guide to Posterous,” I showed educators in our workshop how they could use EMAIL and the free web service Posterous to post text as well as rich media files (like images, audio files and videos) to a personal website. As educators we need to SHARE MORE! I am thrilled web services like Posterous and iPadio are available which make the process of sharing ideas and media easier than ever.

When it comes to communication in the 21st century, email is NOT good enough. We need to encourage more educators to SHARE ideas, resources, and media using tools like Posterous! If you can send an email, you can use Posterous. Many messages we create still SHOULD be sent with a “one to one” or “one to a defined many” distribution, but many of our ideas CAN and SHOULD be shared with “an undefined many.” When we share ideas in this way, there is NO LIMIT to the number of people who could theoretically encounter and be influenced by our ideas. That is VERY powerful! To do this, we need to post content online using a tool like Posterous.

H/T to Clay Shirky who got me thinking about “one to a defined many” and “one to an undefined many” communication differences in his book, “Here Comes Everybody.” H/T to Will Richardson for stating at NECC a few years ago, everyone NEEDS to read Shirky! H/T to Marco Torres for demonstrating how amazing the Brushes app can be at ACTEM in Maine last October! This was a quick sketch Marco did of me at the conference on his iPhone. 🙂

We fryer, my friend.

Here’s Marco’s rendition of Bob Sprankle!

Maine_  4934

Now THAT takes a LOT more artistic talent than I’ll probably ever have. Long live the power of visual art and visual media!

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5 responses to “Why email is NOT good enough for communication today”

  1. JimP Avatar

    Just a big vote for posterous. I showed this tool at a 15 minute optional in-service where the technology coordinators show off new tools and the teachers in the room brainstorm with us uses for the tool. From that Posterous has become an integral to how several classroom operate.

  2. H Songhai Avatar
    H Songhai

    I agree with you Wesley. Email is still very useful, but tools like Posterous, Evernote and Loopt offer up so many more possibilities.

  3. […] Es gibt Anlässe für die “one to one”- oder “one to a defined many”-communication und gute Gründe für eine “one to an undefined many”-communication. Der Autor wirbt insbesondere für Clay Shirky (Buch) und Posterous  (Tool). Wesley Fryer, Moving at the Speed of Creativity, 8. Juli 2010 […]

  4. […] Why email is not good enough for modern communication: Tools like Posterous encourage the sharing of ideas with  a community. […]

  5. […] It will definitely take some re-norming with principals, but I think given the success of June’s Leadership Bootcamp we are in a great position to start leveraging some more of these one-to-many means of communicating. […]