Monday, 7 February 2011

Inside the launch of @tw1tterband: The internet geek perspective


It all sounded so simple on paper.  Build a site on blogger for the immanent first @tw1tterband single, post an update everyday, after a phone call from the boss (@WH1SKS) and then post the video for launch at 8pm on Sunday evening.  No need to be nervous about that right?  No chance of stress?  Been on blogger for two years Gray?  Easy innit?  HA HA!

Initially, yes, it was pretty easy.  The site was built in an hour or so, blogger is incredibly simple to use, for those of us with no HTML experience and the first three posts weren't hard.  I got my phone call, put in the necessary points of the post, added the links and widgets for the JustGiving page so that folks could go donate and we were up and running.

By Friday @RedEaredRabbit was interviewing all nine of the band and the eight strong support team over Twitter and then emailing me the results.  17 posts that needed to be up in good time for Sunday before the build up to launch.  But hey, blogger can schedule posts so I got up early Saturday morning and got a few interviews to go up throughout the day.  Easy.  Except for one teeny tiny thing.  TIME ZONES!

@RedEaredRabbit did his bit brilliantly.  The interviews all arrived over Friday, Saturday and Sunday and we did get them all up in time.  But those scheduled to post on Saturday failed to go up when they should have and I was getting DMs on Twitter letting me know.  The trouble was I was working.  Now I'm lucky, I have a very understanding boss, who after the second one failed, realised that something was wrong with me.  It's hard to explain why it got me so upset, a culmination of things  I guess, but nine guys had made a song without ever meeting and my site was letting them down.  And I knew blogger.  The things should be posting and they weren't.  *sad face*

But it was so sodding simple.  Blogger defaults to an American time zone when you first start and I'd not changed it.  No one had noticed on the manual posts that had gone up previously but the time stamp had been wrong.  So the posts would have posted, eventually, just not when I wanted them too.  Balls.

In the end all was fine and on Sunday I had a blast getting the rest of the interviews posted and then playing my part in how that last post would play out at 8pm, fiddling around with links and stuff on the mobile version and on the YouTube page.  It all went to plan and the real heroes behind it all are the nine guys in the band, the producer and the boss for making it all happen inside seven days.

The video had me sat at my PC with a tear rolling down my cheek, proud to have played a small part in an amazing project and amazed, once again, at how Twitter can, when used right, do something truly positive.  I also made plenty of new friends along the way.  Lovely.

Well done @WH1SKS.  Put it on your CV my friend.

1000+ views so far.  If you haven't, go donate to Macmillan Cancer Support.  At time of writing, over £2000 has been raised, smashing the target of £1000.  Thanks to everyone who got involved.

Now give it another watch.

You can find details on how to get hold of the song and the video at the tw1tterband site.