My goal with “Truth in Tech: A Cross Industry Conversation About Technology Today” was to create dialogue amongst industries that don’t normally communicate about technology. It’s my industry so I talk about it all the time with people of all walks of life. If you’re not in tech, the conversations about what frustrate you, what problems you encounter, or what exciting developments are aiding you in getting your work done are few and far between. But I wanted to stir the pot and get things moving. (See picture set.)
County Supervisor (now Senator) Mike McGuire talked candidly about the cultural shifts that have had to occur within the county. He talked about policy, staff behavior, and how it’s been a challenge to adapt.
Santa Rosa Police Detective John Cregan discussed the efforts of the SRPD to be transparent in their communications with the public and the tools they use that are specific to their trade. He was asked about school bullying and what the department has done to deal the issue and he talked about awareness of the problem and the speed that they are able to address those concerns. I brought up a recent hostage situation in Philadelphia that saw the perpetrator updating his Facebook profile during the ordeal. The need for further training on the part of law enforcement to incorporate tactics in dealing with public displays such as that are the talk of his industry.
I’ve heard some fascinating stories recently about how law enforcement agencies are using tools such as Twitter and Instagram to monitor activities of citizens as well as gangs. Stolen property, graffiti tagging, terrorist activity, school violence and much more have been spotted by simply scrolling through very public information and aided in the apprehension of suspects. I anticipate that these departments are going to have to start hiring individuals with increased technology skills as they are now a standard part of detective work.
Dr. Rich Campbell, marketing professor at Sonoma State University, most notably talked about distraction. The sheer amount of opportunities to be distracted is a stress on concentration as well as communication. He mentioned that the skill set of students coming out of colleges is still catching up to the needs of employers. It will take some time before the skills are meshed into the normal way of doing things.
I spoke about Online Reputation Management. I research many companies and individuals whose reputations are damaged by online content or are representing themselves questionably. I don’t believe people understand how the public’s perception of them is affecting their livelihood. It’s a scary subject when I start talking about it. I see people’s eyes get wide. If you missed it and would like to see my presentation, see the slideshow below.
Additional sidenote: my paperback book “What You Don’t Know About Social Media CAN Hurt You: Take Control of Your Online Reputation” is a thorough description of the risks we face in the online world, the way it can affect our lives, legal concerns, obstacles to overcome, and a step by step set of instructions on how to take control over your name and reputation. This is for those that aren’t avid social media users. This is for the everyman. It will be ready for shipping in mid November but you can preorder your copy today!
After each of the presenters, we sat and had a panel discussion about the issues. I want to thank each of the speakers for taking the time to sit and talk with me and the audience. I know the attendees learned a lot because so many of them came up to me afterwards to say they had no idea about much of the things they heard. And that was the point.
Now talk amongst yourselves.