What’s new with mem­bers of our MCP com­mu­nity

Jamaica Gleaner - - SPORTS -

AS THE first-ever chief dig­i­tal of­fi­cer at New York’s Metropoli­tan Mu­seum of Art, Sree Sreeni­vasan cre­ated the mu­seum’s much-lauded app and re­designed its web­site, at­tract­ing mil­lions of dig­i­tal vis­i­tors and help­ing in­crease at­ten­dance by young peo­ple. But in June 2016, three years af­ter Sreeni­vasan started, the fi­nan­cially trou­bled mu­seum elim­i­nated his and sev­eral other po­si­tions due to bud­get cuts.

Rather than be dis­cour­aged, the for­mer Columbia Univer­sity jour­nal­ism pro­fes­sor turned to his peers, shar­ing a sur­vey on his per­sonal web­site with a sin­gle ques­tion: “What should I do next?” The re­sponse was swift; Sreeni­vasan re­ceived 1,300 sug­ges­tions. “Ev­ery­body talks about how bad the In­ter­net is and how there is so much hate,” he says. “But it felt like I was in a global, dig­i­tal hug.”

Be­fore that ex­per­i­ment in crowd­sourc­ing his future had time to pay off, Sreeni­vasan got an of­fer from an­other great New York in­sti­tu­tion: the city it­self. He is now lead­ing NYC’s dig­i­tal ef­forts, which in­clude steer­ing the 300-plus web­sites un­der the nyc.gov han­dle, nur­tur­ing New York’s startup scene, and find­ing ways to reach less-con­nected res­i­dents who aren’t yet plugged into the city’s dig­i­tal of­fer­ings. It’s a big chal­lenge, and his boss, Mayor Bill de Bla­sio, has high ex­pec­ta­tions. “He de­cided to tweet what my job is,” says Sreeni­vasan. “He wrote, ‘On­ward to be­com­ing the most tech-friendly, trans­par­ent, dig­i­tally eq­ui­table city in the world.’ Which is great and sim­ple and scary. Now some­body can say, ‘From these three things, what have you achieved?’”

Quick ques­tions for Sreeni­vasan

BEST RE­CENT TECH DE­VEL­OP­MENT

The rise of per­sonal live-stream­ing. “It af­fords peo­ple the op­por­tu­nity to connect with other peo­ple, places, and or­gan­i­sa­tions. And the best part about it is there’s no post-pro­duc­tion.”

WORST DE­VEL­OP­MENT

Hype around new tech­nol­ogy. “Ev­ery­body’s still search­ing for what’s next. They don’t give enough im­por­tance to the tools they’re al­ready us­ing.”

FA­VORITE SO­CIAL ME­DIA AC­COUNT

National Geo­graphic on In­sta­gram. “It’s a great ex­am­ple of how you use the plat­form.”

ON HIS LIST OF MOST CRE­ATIVE PEO­PLE

Liza Donnelly, a car­toon­ist for The New Yorker. “She’s rein­vent­ing car­toon­ing for the 21st cen­tury.”

HOW HE STAYS PRO­DUC­TIVE

“I do ev­ery­thing on my phone, as much as I can, so that I’m re­spond­ing and get­ting things done through­out the day.”

Sree Sreeni­vasan be­gins the dis­cus­sion of so­cial me­dia im­por­tance at the #Burgh work­shop on March 24, 2015.

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