Digital Project Proposal — Publicity Campaign

Scholarship needs to, as Dave Parry puts it, “be online or be irrelevant, because our future depends on it, but more importantly the future of how knowledge production dissemination takes place in the broader culture will be determined by it.”[1]  This idea guided conception of another idea to do a publicity campaign for the DC 1968 Project, a project on which I am working in the Public History Practicum class with three classmates for a client.  The project itself is a study of whiteness and the construction of whiteness in Washington, DC fifty years ago and will most likely have an online component of some kind.  What is not immediately clear, and what this proposed publicity project aims to resolve, is who will be the audience and who will care about this project and its findings?

The primary goal of this project, then, is to find or create an audience for the DC 1968 Project’s study of cultural whiteness in DC.  On one side of things, there exists a preestablished community of local history buffs who enjoy learning about DC history who would likely be interested in the findings of this project.  What matters most with regards to this group is getting the word of its existence to those belonging to it so they know to access it.  To do this, I will start a twitter feed, a blog, and a Facebook page for this DC 1968 Project.  Depending on the time and the permission of others, I may try my hand at making a YouTube channel and/or podcast about the making of the DC 1968 Project.

Because each of these platforms has unique strengths, each facet of this project will serve a slightly different, yet complimentary, purpose.  Each of these five platforms will be for advertising this product, though the usefulness of Twitter and Facebook may end there.  The blog, YouTube channel, and podcast each has different potential as a longer-form means of communicating complex ideas.  With these, it will be possible to record our progress and our process which will have two main benefits.  For those who work on public history projects, this is a way to share experiences and ideas.  For those who do not, it will welcome the audience behind the scenes to forge a community.

In addition to borrowing Parry’s idea that online presence is essential to the effective dissemination of modern scholarship, I will borrow the process from Michael Peter Edson’s evaluation of the Green brothers and what led to their success.  He writes, “They sat down in front of their cameras and started talking about the things that interested them, and in the process, they got to know their audience. Their work is social, graceful, spontaneous, humble, funny, creative, humane, and generous.”[2]  While it isn’t the goal to launch a YouTube franchise, these successful principles may be a strong foundation for attracting the kind of audience which would consume the online product of the DC 1968 Project.

[1] “Be Online or Be Irrelevant – Academhack – Thoughts on Emerging Media and Higher Education,” n.d., accessed February 21, 2018,

[2] Michael Peter Edson, “Dark Matter,” CODE | WORDS: Technology and Theory in the Museum, May 20, 2014, accessed February 21, 2018,

Edson, Michael Peter. “Dark Matter.” CODE | WORDS: Technology and Theory in the Museum, May 20, 2014. Accessed February 21, 2018.

“Be Online or Be Irrelevant – Academhack – Thoughts on Emerging Media and Higher Education,” n.d. Accessed February 21, 2018.

One Reply to “Digital Project Proposal — Publicity Campaign”

  1. Developing a digital outreach campaign for an effort like this is a great idea for a digital project. I realize you are planning on working on the other project (which also sounds great), but I do still like how this project focuses on extending the reach and use of an ongoing initiative. If you were to focus on doing this kind of project, there is a lot of work related to digital media publicity campaigns that would be relevant. That is, if you went this route it would be good to look a bit into the modes and methods by which folks do digital marketing for any number of products and resources.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *