For six days in September, several cities across the globe simultaneously host panels, events and more to celebrate Social Media Week (Sept. 24-28). Like social media but don't necessarily want to get involved as a techie, an entrepreneur or a social media geek? Here are a few events that might be worth your time, including a couple hosted by yours truly.
*All events are free, but registration is required. Hurry--some are filling up fast!
Tribune Sports: Social Media is Changing the Game
2 p.m.-3:30 p.m., Monday
Social media and sports go hand in hand these days, especially in Chicago. Meet a few of the Chicago Tribune’s sportswriters to hear what goes into their now-24/7 jobs on the sports-
Facebook and Government
Noon-1:30 p.m., Tuesday
If you couldn’t tell from your turbulent Facebook feed, it’s an election year. Facebook’s associate policy manager, Adam Connor, offers up some insight on how elected offices and officials are using everyone’s favorite social network to engage with their constituents. Plus, Mayor Emanuel’s Director of Social Media sits in for a Q&A afterward.
From Chicago to Berlin: Tostitos Silent House Party
3 p.m.-4 p.m., Wednesday
I swear Social Media Week is more than panels. Ever been to a silent disco? Check out this "silent house party" with sister Social Media Week city Berlin. Attendees in both cities with simultaneously listen to DJs and live-tweet parties in their respective cities via wireless headphones.
Instagram and Twitter Historical Tour of Grant Park
1 p.m.-3 p.m., Thursday
Love taking scenic photos of the touristy parts of the city you live in? Impress your friends even further when you live-tweet fun facts, too, as you Instagram your way through this Grant Park tour, guided by a Chicago Park District historian.
For Good and Not Evil: Social Media in a Chicago Public Schools Classroom
4 p.m.-5 p.m., Thursday
The Cafe, National Teachers Academy
What would your elementary and high school years have been like had you had social media at your disposal? Hear from a few Chicago Public Schools teachers about how they’ve introduced social media into their classrooms, “for good,” and not “for evil.”
RedEye’s ‘The Social’
7 p.m.-8 p.m., Thursday
We highly highly recommend this one. Digital Producer Ernest Wilkins hosts a web- and social media-based talk show, with interview guests Anthony Adams (formerly a Chicago Bears player, currently bringing the social media awesomeness as a free agent) and Molly Soda (she’s big on Tumblr). Surprise cameos and sketches from
Can Social Media Improve Transit?
9:30 a.m.-11 a.m., Friday
Tribune Tower, Cambell Hall
Is social media making it easier to get around Chicago? RedEye's Tracy Swartz and the Tribune's Jon Hilkevitch lead a discussion on the impact of Twitter and more on Chicago's various transit options at this panel.
Social Media Week Cross-City Challenge
You like free money? Of course you do. Participate in this social media, food truck challenge to win big prizes: Gather up as many points as you can by sharing tweets and photos from Chicago food trucks (use the #eatSMWchicago hashtag, too). Those with the most points win the big bucks.
Find more info about these events at socialmediaweek.org/chicago.