Have you ever wondered what the people at Facebook are like? Today, I had the once in a life-time chance to walk into the Facebook premises and ask Rodrigo Schmidt, an Engineering Leader at Facebook & Instagram, all the questions I had about their platforms. It was only one moment in a day full of inspiring business encounters we had on our Study Tour with swissnex San Francisco. Continue Reading →
After an entire week of beautiful sunny weather Karl the Fog greeted us Friday morning and reminded us of his reign in the San Francisco Bay Area. Therefore, the view from the hotel room somehow suited my mood.
Despite looking forward to going back to my loved ones, I’m somewhat sad that this trip is coming to an end. It was such an interesting, intense and inspiring week. But luckily, the program wasn’t just over yet. There was still an exciting final day ahead of us.
By Irène Brunner, Online Manager at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences, School of Engineering (@ladycomanche)
Today was the day with the big names: LinkedIn and Facebook! And a not as well known but good, established startup called Gigya. Continue Reading →
The second day of our Study Tour kicked off with an hour’s drive from San Francisco down South to the heart of Silicon Valley. Julia and Florencia swept us up at our hotel at dawn and as we drove down the freeway we went through a few of the many microclimates unique to the Peninsula and South Bay areas. Leaving sunny but cool and windy San Francisco, going through the infamous fog and arriving a few miles further in a warm, bright Palo Alto. Continue Reading →
By Tanja Von Rotz, Head of Marketing and Communications, ZHAW School of Psychology (@indira2007)
San Francisco welcomes the Study Tour Group with beautiful sunny and warm weather, leaving the fog behind. After exploring the exciting city on Sunday we are given a warm welcome by the swissnex team at the Slanted Door, a popular Asian style restaurant in the Ferry Building. We got to know the group members better while facing the beautiful Bay Bridge, and started to get sense of the California spirit. Continue Reading →
This interview is part of a series of posts highlighting social media trailblazers in Switzerland. Our last post in this series, featured Katja Wenk, Web and Social Media Officer at the University of St. Gallen. Today, we meet Yan Luong, Social Media Manager at Radio Télévision Suisse (RTS).
As often social media friendship stories go, I met Yan through Twitter in early 2012. Shortly after his name started popping up everywhere. We followed the same people on Twitter, had some LinkedIn connections in common, and seemed to share a bad habit of tweeting at odd hours.
Many tweets later, Yan and I met in Lausanne in May 2012. Having a coffee with somebody you’ve met on social media for the first time might sound like an awkward situation. In my experience, it is the absolute opposite. After all, you know what this person cares about (Twitter), laughs at (Facebook & Instagram), and what he/she does for a living (LinkedIn). Over a few coffees, Yan and I compared notes about our jobs, new tools we are intrigued by, who’s who in the world of social media in Switzerland, and what makes social media users in Switzerland tick.
Owner of a good sense of humor and easy disposition, Yan agreed to an improptu video interview in which he talks about his work at RTS, how he manages 55 Facebook pages, and the Swiss’ obsession with the iPhone.
More about Yan Luong.
This is the story of 14 Swiss communicators taking on Silicon Valley led by swissnex San Francisco. Below are the impressions, thoughts, & moments from the 5 days of total social media immersion!
A recap of the study tour’s final day comes from Gilda Schertenleib, University of Lugano, and Philippe Fabian, Zurich University of Applied Sciences.
In Search of the Holy Grail
At the end of this incredible week, we probably identify with the gold diggers that came to San Francisco in the 1840’s, a story that our fantastically funny guide illustrated during the Gold Rush City walking tour today.
And here we are, 170 years after the Gold Rush, repeating history with the “Social Media Rush.” A group of avid people, who travelled mountains and oceans in search of the Social Media grail. Like the gold seekers that didn’t actually find nuggets in the city of San Francisco, we didn’t find our grail, either. Simply because it doesn’t exist here, and might not exist anywhere on the planet.
Best of the Week Photos
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But as with those Californian ancestors, no grail doesn’t mean no riches for us. Those early settlers found other things and were successful in many other ways. They turned San Francisco into a prosperous city. Likewise, we found a whole lot of inspiration, gained unique insights into shooting stars and pioneers of the Social Media era, came across great discussions and made valuable connections with many people here in the Bay Area and with our Swiss colleagues. We could literally feel the heartbeat of Social Media.
Encouraged and enriched we will try to make the Silicon Valley spirit grow and prosper in our institutions back home. We will try to stay down-to-earth with the use of Social Media as American universities do. But on the other hand, we have to break new ground and not be afraid of stumbling.
Or, in the words of David Harris from today’s final workshop: “Fail forward or fail fast.” Just like the gold diggers did.
Video Recap of Day 6