Waves of Change
Like Tampa International Airport, The Global Transit Guidebook is transforming.
If you’re a long-time resident of the Tampa Bay region, or visit frequently, you’ve probably seen the many transformative changes occurring at America’s Favorite Airport to bring passengers a better experience. I’ll have a blog post regarding those changes – including the SkyConnect train – in the coming weeks.
However, that’s not what this post is about. If you’ve stopped The Global Transit Guidebook during the past few weeks, you’ve likely noticed very similar transformative changes that I’ve been making to bring you a better experience. These changes include expanded content, a new website theme, & a simpler layout.
However, along with the website changes come some changes that will be made to the scope of my social media avenues – specifically my Facebook pages & groups.
During the past several months, I’ve realized that my Facebook page & groups have somewhat lost direction – thus I’ve felt less motivated to post regularly & better engage with my followers & members. The overall renovation of The Global Transit Guidebook site has presented me with a chance to really re-focus & refine the scope of my Facebook page & groups, as well as divest or close down assets that I feel are no longer needed. Below is a listing of all of my social media avenues & what I’ve decided to do with each of them.
- The Global Transit Guidebook Facebook Page
- The Global Transit Guidebook Facebook Page remains active & will remain as such for the foreseeable future. In fact, I fully intend to become more active with the page & make more posts as 2019 progresses. However, the nature of posts on the page will be refined, so the following items will be posted going forward.
- New transit-related blog posts (these will automatically be cross-posted to the page). This includes updates on my transit-related side projects.
- Introduction of new sections or subsections on The Global Transit Guidebook website.
- Transit-related news stories & happenings – including direct shares from transit agency Facebook Pages.
- Posts encouraging page followers to invite others to follow the page.
- Posts encouraging page followers to join The Global Transit Guidebook Forum Facebook Group. Posts will also be made from time to time to encourage page followers to join The First Responder Vehicle Lounge Facebook Group if they so desire.
- The HARTride 2012 Facebook Page
- The HARTride 2012 Facebook Page serves as my avenue for non-transit-related content and as such will remain that way. Content will be posted on this page as follows:
- New non-transit-related blog posts (these will not automatically be cross-posted to the page, but I will be able to post the link manually). This includes updates on my side projects (whether transit-related or not).
- Posts encouraging page followers to invite others to follow the page.
- Posts encouraging page followers to join The Global Transit Guidebook Forum Facebook Group & The First Responder Vehicle Lounge Facebook Group.
- The Global Transit Guidebook Forum Facebook Group
- The Global Transit Guidebook Forum Facebook Group serves as an avenue for me to interact with members in a manner that isn’t really possible through the Global Transit Guidebook Facebook Page. For instance, I’m able to get a much better feel for what’s going on transit-wise within specific members’ areas – including planned service changes, public hearings, projects, etc., especially from such members who reside in areas that I don’t regularly cover in The Guidebook:
- Providing website updates & soliciting feedback/ideas on such updates, as well as upcoming blog posts.
- I also encourage members to share transit-related photography, videos, experiences, news stores, & happenings – especially such relating to/happening in their respective areas.
- Periodic polls are posted by myself or a member of my social media staff – to either solicit feedback on upcoming website updates & blog posts, to participate in periodic “Showcase” photo contests, or to ask for member thoughts on a particular transit-related subject matter.
- Occasional transit tracking activities – using a transit agency’s real-time transit tracker interface to track transit vehicles, then posting screenshots in the group when indicating service changes that involve the addition, substantial alteration, or elimination of a route or service, new transit vehicles entering service, & older transit vehicles being retired from service.
- The Global Transit Enthusiast Lounge Facebook Group
- The Global Transit Enthusiast Lounge Facebook Group was primarily dedicated to those members who are passionate transit enthusiasts, unlike The Global Transit Guidebook Forum – which is open to anyone to join. During the summer of 2018, I began to lose interest in maintaining the group full-time and by the fall of 2018, I was considering closing the group altogether. My assistant social media administrator, Jake L., expressed interest in taking over day-to-day moderation of the group & eventually making it his own group to coincide with his new blog. In December of 2018, I officially divested The Global Transit Enthusiast Lounge (now called The Transit Enthusiast Lounge) to Jake, though I remain on the rolls as a staff member & assistant group administrator.
- The Global Transit Travel Log Facebook Group
- The Global Transit Travel Log Facebook Group was primarily dedicated to members wanting to document their transit experiences & stories, & was heavily inspired by the popular Tales from the Bus Facebook Group. While I aspired to substantially grow the group, this never came to fruition & I wound up closing the group permanently during the spring of 2018.
- The Tampa Streetcar Discussion Facebook Group
- The Tampa Streetcar Discussion Facebook Group was intended to be a launchpad for getting Tampa, FL residents to speak out to elected officials on how the TECOline Streetcar should be improved. I eventually closed down this group because of the now ongoing InVision Study, as well as local transportation advocacy groups like the Sunshine Citizens coalition (Facebook Page).
- The @TampaBayTransit Twitter Feed
- I’m going to tell you point blank that I was never a fan of Twitter. In fact, I heavily despise using Twitter & almost did not even create an account. However, knowing that some people do not have Facebook accounts, but have an active Twitter account, I thought it was important to at least have a presence on Twitter – even if I didn’t use the platform often. My current intention is to keep the @TampaBayTransit feed online for the foreseeable future, but I don’t plan on posting a lot there. This is mainly because various algorithm changes with both Twitter & Facebook no longer allow cross-posting/sharing of content across each other.
- Paper.li-powered eNewspaper
- When I first discovered the Paper.li eNewspaper last year, I thought “how creative this would be to use this platform to convey transit stories to my followers”. Fast forward, and things aren’t looking good. Most of the good features of Paper.li are on their premium (paid) subscription & thus I no longer feel inclined to market this avenue to any of my followers. I will still keep the account if I want to look for transit-related news pieces that aren’t being fed into my Twitter or Facebook feeds though.
- My YouTube Channel
- I still periodically post videos to my YouTube Channel – including my various transit vehicle rides & other transit-related & non-transit-related ventures. I therefore have no intention of closing my account.
- My Google+ Profile
- I never really used Google+ to begin with, but did share some of my blog posts through that avenue. Now with Google shutting the service down next month, all references to my Google+ account will be removed from The Global Transit Guidebook website.
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