Up until Oct 24, the date of my last posting about event calendars on the CCSU campus, I just thought the issue of a lack of focus on a master event calendar was bad. Double-input “Conference and Lectures” entries on the University web page (www.ccsu.edu) and a link to a list of links where other Arts events could be searched through (11 separate links!) in order to find an event you might be interested in. Of course there were always a couple of events posted in a polished marketing format for those events we wished to gush over, such as should be the case. And last but not least, you could hope that the few teaching faculty, administrative faculty and staff that subscribed to one of the ancient not-well-subscribed-to listservs (300 maybe?) might publish information about an event that was of interest, if you like colloquiums on student math projects or the ongoing arab-israeli lectures. Oh, and I almost forgot… Pipeline, where every administrative faculty, staff, teaching faculty, administration/management, and student checks daily for whatever is selected/requested there for posting.
On that date, you could also click on the link from the CCSU main webpage to find events on the website TODAY @ CCSU (today.ccsu.edu) This calendar is generated from a database of events scheduled on campus through one of the many offices that manage space on campus. It is pretty close to being “the best” source of event information on campus, if you were looking for a title, location, date and time and detailed information about a speaker, show or workshop, provided information was shared by the planner. See more about the long history of TODAY @ CCSU here. The software is VERY capable! Read about more of its features here.
Then the power outage occurs and things go *really* bad. Now there is no link to this resource from the main CCSU web page, and it has been replaced by a calendar that is manually kept up by inputting data from various resources, bad spelling, inaccuracies and all, and only displays choice events. How do you find out what is going on at CCSU Today? Even the President is in the dark as he sends a message out to the campus to alert us about an upcoming event that he was not aware of and must be of some importance to get his personal attention (though the event was posted on TODAY @ CCSU for several weeks now).
We have software that allows us to categorize events, search by name for events, by event type, post featured events, RSS feed events to web pages (yeah, that’s one to the right!), submit detailed information about the event, post photos, posters, forms etc with the event, email an event listserv, personalize calendar views, add events to your ical calendar, use social media to promote an event, mail a colleague about an event from the calendar, set an e-mail reminder, and more. Why aren’t we better managing the resource of educational events for the various communities on campus with this software? Politics? Control?