New Media Awards

Last night the magazine the New Statesman presented its New Media Awards 2006. These awards have been running since 1998, with categories changing to reflect the development of ‘new media’:

The awards aim to recognise those that both realise the potential of new media technology and have the commitment and stamina to effectively execute their ideas. The award categories, which vary from year to year, suitably reflect this goal.
This year’s categories are:

Accessibility
Advocacy
Contribution to civic society
Education
Elected representative
Independent information
Innovation
Modernising government

The site has been updated with the winners. There’s a great collection of well-designed, thoughtful and useful sites on the list, well worth taking a look.
One of my favourites is the winners of the Education award, Sonic Postcards. Through the medium of an online map, schools across the UK have recorded and uploaded audio clips, images and videos, which can be explored and shared. The site encourages children 9-14 to learn about the technology and to develop a sense of community with likeminded schools.

sonicpostcards.JPG

But how does the site work from a web marketing and sharing perspective?. Beautifully presented but it’s all in flash. It forces you to take a journey and prevents schools linking directly to their contributions, although the navigation options do make it easier to find things. Google juice is almost none existent – you have to know exactly what it is called to really find it. But this is not an advertising site, it does not need to really have deep linking orbe searchable, the benefit comes from journey the children take to get their creativity on the site, not how the site is marketed.

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