I have been with WPBS-DT here in Watertown, NY for just over three months. When the opportunity arose to attend the PBS Regional Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland; I thought to myself, why not take a chance to go see what I could learn from other stations and folks at PBS.
Day one of the conference was an energy driven day with lots of content and information. I choose to attend a Super 7session on Downton Abbey & Mercy Street. This session discussed what different resources PBS has to offer to stations in regards to media and communications for the final season of Downton Abbey and the first season of Mercy Street. Just after this first session, I came to the realization that PBS has so many resources to offer to the different stations across the country. The second Super 7 session that I went to was the PBS Arts Festival. This session covered the contents of what the art festival is for PBS, and the resources available to stations. Again, there are so many resources available to stations that PBS offers that not many people realize are available.
Day two was content and resource driven just like the first day of the conference. The first break out session I attended was on Coming Soon: The New PBS.org hosted by Eric Freeland and Matt Schoch. When it comes to anything digital, these two guys are amazing. This session covered the new pbs.org relaunch that is coming on December 15th. I think the new design is absolutely amazing and will benefit stations tremendously. There are three portions of the website that local stations control. That is a huge upgrade from the old website where one space showed local content of the station.
The second breakout session was my session that I did on Using Apps to Drive Engagement. I was nervous at first to lead a session, but not only did I teach people about driving engagement through station enterprise mobile apps I also took away useful information from the people that attended my session.
The final breakout session that I attended was Overview: Web Services for Stations hosted by Jennifer Hinders. This session was absolutely amazing because it showed us the main purpose behind the PBS Digital Web Services team- station focused web products! Jen took the time to demonstrate the current products and services that her team provides, Bento, Station Video Portal, web modules like TV Schedule, User Generated Content Tools, integrated web solutions, and beyond! As a web developer, I feel sessions like this are a huge asset because you can learn so much information to take back to your local station.
Overall, the PBS regional meeting in Baltimore Maryland was an amazing experience for me. Not only did I take away so much information, but six other colleagues of mine also took away so much information that will better our station and PBS as a whole. If you ever have the chance to go to a regional meeting, I recommend you go and try it out.