Friday, February 10, 2012

Lurking at #IntJC

Reach out and touch someone. I don't know why this slogan got printed in memories of a trip to the USA over 30 years ago. Viewing the TV add over Youtube is a strange experience. It stirs nothing, no memory, blank screen. But the slogan settled in. The year is correct:1979. First serious solo long trip abroad. I flexed the muscles first with a week visit alone in London.

How reaching out and touching someone has changed, that is, in terms of potential. Let's set aside the technology. How to mix the will to reach out with the warning you heard time and again as a child not to talk to strangers? Where is the manual, the how to in 7 ways?  To what extent does this early warning still work in the background? How national culture and "normal" dynamics of communication impact the possibilities (and you know how much different "normalities" collide even in a soft way in liaison interpreting, don't you)?

In Japan, more than 95% of SNS users hide behind a pet or another animal picture, and hide everything personal, excepted the food they ate at lunch and immortalized with the mobile.

Over at LinkedIn, in thematic groups, they highlight that "fantastic" new feature to encourage communication: launch a poll. What a brilliant idea! Am I the only one feeling this lame and childish, to keep it within the range of political correctness? Is it how you thaw the ice behind the screen?

And rather than asking how, shouldn't this be assessed with the question "what for?": for what purpose do I wish to thaw the ice? The answers may become easier to enunciate.

As with this post, the virtual world is awash with public monologues, with copy-pasting as media broadcasting. Alone together, a book title already published. Anyone is a chief editor

Of course, this public monologue may be the trigger and mandatory stage for dialogs to start, and multipartite at that. But what takes the front stage is the never-ending stream of monologues.

Where is the button that read "Only show announcements and links to hangouts"?

With #InJC, the Twitter based Interpreting Journal Club, you can lurk in perfect anonymity, and you are invited to do so as a preliminary step to jump in sometimes in a next session.

Several solutions are available that track specific hashtags et refresh automatically. With Tweetchat, a web based service, you don't even need a Twitter account to follow and there is no registration.

Just try it right now: jump to the #IntJC channel. It's a web page, no install, safe.

See the Refresh Speed button? Click on it and slide leftward to the minimum 5 sec. All set.

Not much things are happening right now during intersessions, but people known and unknown have been promoting The Interpreting Journal Club on their own, and it is a never-ending joy and bewilderment to witness this phenomenon taking place. Click on some links mentioned and you will find the #IntJC web site, with the coming sessions data featured on the top page. Yes, the logo is awkward. I cook better.

It reads there is no registration, no membership, not even a club, despite the name. And no strings attached. There is only the will to talk shop.

On February 18th, bring your hats to the session. Cloakroom will be available at no charge. No formal attire needed.  And you can lurk totally discreet.



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