An audio version of this blogpost is here (10 minutes)
Last Friday night I got an idea. Just as I was hoping to slip off to sleep without excitement, I thought about Twitter. I thought about how good it was to be connected to people all over the globe via such a brilliant tool.
This pleasant thought led to another - more questioning - thought : how well connected am I really? How many counties in Ireland do I have contact with via Twitter? Where are my contacts based?
I went to sleep with a new project forming
- I would like to have at least one engaging Twitter contact in each county of Ireland…
Usually those sort of ideas fade in the sleep. So often I wake & move on to something else - the idea goes off to haunt somebody else…
On Saturday morning, it was different - the idea rose with me. Within a couple of hours I found myself formulating a plan to seek out someone from each of the 26 counties of RoI. The idea had taken root. And I’d begun to say to myself - "if the idea has survived the night, there must be legs in it…"
I’d like to tell you what happened next.
The first thing I did was tweet my intention to find at least one engaging tweeter in each county.
"Last night’s big idea: get at least one engaging Twitter contact in all 26 counties of RoI #project26"
I simply announced that via Twitter - I didn’t poke the plan at anyone, at first. (I soon sent a few tweets like "@Paraic @dogfoodlady You are fine engaging people#omaniCork #project26 - Co Limerick next".
You can imagine how thrilled I was when @SundayTwist responded with enthusiasm for the idea.
That’s how our collaboration began. We exchanged a few tweets about it, agreed to spend 48 hours seeing what we could come up with.
I live in Cork & know plenty of engaging tweeters there. She lives in Dublin - and I was sure she would know many engaging tweeters there. But I didn’t know much about the network of @SundayTwist. This felt like a great advantage - because together we might dovetail well.
By the end of Sunday, we’d cracked the job of finding two per county. We had a few blank counties - Offaly, Roscommon & Monaghan proved to be the toughest for us. But we got great help.
Boy did we get great help from the following people :
(1) @eirepreneur introduced me to @giftedkidsie & @harrypig in Co Clare
(2) @bobgreenmonster introduced @lawlorchiro @golfchiro @DIBayliss @Laois_offaly @unlaoised @cebyrne in Co Laois
(3) @susankilkenny helped with Co Kilkenny
(4) @aoifep helped with Co Sligo
(5) @elaineLarkin with Co Wexford & "sunnysoutheast list"
(6) @topgold helped with intro to @manaboutcouch in Co Donegal
(7) @CliffHouseHotel introduced @tanneryDungarva in Co Waterford
(8) @sineadniriain helped with Co Tipperary
(9) @IvanSantry introduced @PaulaCoMayo from Co Mayo
(10) @dannifromdublin helped by RT - as did @NaughtyNikKit
(11) @jonathangrimes introduced @adam_melvin from Co Donegal
(12) @cotisgal helped with RT - as did @siobhancoyle & @susanalustiza
(13) @scottyccfc helped by asking why this wasn’t a 32 county project
(14) @mimistores appeared and helped with Co Meath
(15) @primaryposition helped with RT of our quest re Co Galway & introduced @antonmannering
(16) @domybooks popped up from Co Galway
(17) @celav from Co Cork recommended @allancavanagh from Co Galway
(18) @danmorris63 disqualified himself from Co Kerry
(19) @diarmuidcogan Co Cork offered to help & introduced @paddyjkelly from Co Kerry + @debz from Co Offaly
(20) @Ritchhh helped by RT re Co Offaly
(21) @cotisgal recommended @donegalabu from Co Donegal
(22) Roddy Jenkins helped, recommended @oconnellbrian in Co Cork + @alisonwells from Co Wicklow + @janetravers Co Kildare
(23) I can’t remember who recommended @kieranmurphy & @dinglesurf from Co Kerry
(24) @johnpeavoy helped by clarifying that he was no longer living in Co Offaly
(25) @suzybie & @conor_pope helped by RT of search for Co Offaly tweeter
(26) @trevorvaugh & @siobhancoyle helped us on the Co Offaly search
(27) @CJohnson103 helped on Co Roscommon
(28) @burbage1 recommended @mduffywriter from Co Dublin
(29) @sandrahennessy RT’ed our search for particularly engaging tweeters
(30) @misIJenkins helped us with Co Offaly
(31) @donegalabu helped us with thanks in an RT
(32) @allisonwells helped us with encouraging comments
(33) @berniequinn helped us use the correct #project26 hashtag
(34) @adrianBarry98FM helped by asking what this was all about + suggested we hold a vote on Twitter
(35) @scarie recommended @mammyskitchen from Co Westmeath
(36) @angevf helped by recommending @john_mcguirk from Co Monaghan
(37) @berniequinn recommended @monaghanpenguin from Co Monaghan
(38) @dinglesurf helped by chipping in a bit of humour from Co Kerry
(39) @doogarry helped us from Co Monaghan
(40) @ladydotty from Co Sligo helped by asking what #project26 was all about
(41) @reddav14 & @angevf helped by questioning why we kept to 26 counties
(42) @monaghanpenguin helped by asking what #project26 was
(43) @reddave14 helped by questioning the decision-making process to pick engaging tweeters
(44) @aloliver + @martineCork + @FinbarrWilson @thickeytom also helped.
If I’ve left anyone out of this list, I’d be happy to edit them in - so that the historical record will be accurate. I suspect there are contacts of @sundaytwist who’ve helped without me being aware of their role.
Audio helped on the way:
I made two audios on the way. One was early on and the second was later - those links on AudioBoo were useful & enriching - they gave us an easy way to fill people in on what this was all about. [I must remember to make an audio version of this blogpost.]
This began with a simple idea - one person per county. But it spawned more complex ideas - and a new collaborative team. @SundayTwist & I stumbled into the idea of going the same for the counties of UK and the States of USA.
It’s been a wonderful way to realise the value of location-specific connections. It’s opened up fresh prospects. It’s enabled us to offer a suggestion to others - that they do the same for themselves…
Our list is now a Twitter List - it’s available to anyone who’s interested. It may even become useful to someone else.
It was particularly satisfying to get the idea & complete the project as a collaboration in a few days.