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Quebec City Summer Festival gave me 15 seconds of fame* this week.

The summer festival innovates this year by using a 2.0 strategy. They use Twitter to keep in touch with the festivalgoers. You can follow them here: @InfoFestiBell

They tweet about upcoming events of the day and they tweet live during shows. Their tweets are seductive and reading them makes you want to be there.

They also display messages from Twitters on a big screen over the stage and on different kiosks.

Festival Screen

Picture credit: @InfoFestiBell on

Using Twitter and showing interaction with the festivalgoers on a screen over the stage is innovative. Presentability is also the way you communicate with your customers.

After a small Google search, I have found no mention about this (except on the festival Web site). Strange; this kind of innovation usually spread quickly across technology news sites or blogs.

It is a modern way of interacting with the crowd. It helps them wait for the show and it even offers some festivalgoers 15 seconds of fame when their tweets are displayed on the screen.

That’s what happened to me.

I asked @InfoFestiBell if they have a picture of their screen with a real Tweet on it instead of their welcome message.

After a few minutes. I received a message saying: The picture is not perfect because of the sunset but – who can we see on the screen? With a link to this picture. Click on the picture to see it full size.

Festival Screen with my Tweet

Picture credit: @InfoFestiBell on

Unfortunately, it is difficult to distinguish what is on the screen. But @InfoFestiBell confirmed that it was my picture and my original tweet. In front of 50 000 people! That is sooooo cool!


Of course, there is some filtering. When you have a big crowd, music ,alcohol and show off facility, you can be sure that you will see the best of what mankind is capable.

Some would probably argue that Twitter is not mainstream. The Festival also linked the screen to SMS (text via cell phone).

Other would say that Twitter has a vocabulary that is not accessible to everybody. That is true. So what? The Festival did not shut down the traditional canals of communication. They just add one to extend their reach.

Test: If you do not understand the following joke, it confirm that Twitter has its own vocabulary and that you should stay with the others canals Twitter Funnybirdnoises


Conclusion 1: The Quebec City Summer Festival made another step forward in technology integration to better reach their customers. They have always been innovators and they pursue in that direction.

Conclusion 2: As a wannabe baseman who’s dreaming of playing on a big stage with big amps, this is the closest I have been to a stage.

Thanks to @InfoFestiBell

*15 seconds of fame, inspired by Andy Warhol’s 15 minutes of fame

Share with me: How do you innovate to reach your customers?

UPDATE: Guy Couture (@gcouture) put a video online of his 15 seconds of fame. His first Tweet in front of 60 000 festivalgoers.

UPDATE 2: Disclosure: after DM (direct messaging) with @InfoFestiBell, I learned that the twittering is done by the technological partner Bell Canada (the biggest telecommunication company in Canada) under the guidance of the Festival. Coincidence, I have a professional link with Bell Canada. However, I did not know that Bell was involved and I still think that the Festival is doing a great job with Twitter to reach the festivalgoers. It changes nothing to my post.

P.S. Congratulations to Bell Canada for their excellent job with the @InfoFestiBell Twitter account.

UPDATE 3: Guy Couture (@gcouture) added another video online;  the tweet of @nicolasroberge, an active tweeter of Quebec City, displayed on screen. Link to Youtube

Posted by Denis François Gravel


Good question. Who’s responsible for horrible slides in presentation?

Blogger and Tweeter Jeff Bailey suggest that : “Many people who do presentations are forced to use slides created by others. You can’t blame them for using horrible slides, but you do.”

Make sense.

In is blog post « Esthetics in everything you do » Jan Schultink wrote : “ My personal rule: never let an ugly chart or image enter my PowerPoint presentation, ever.”

Make sense. Who’s right?


As a presenter, we are responsible for delivering the message. Our responsibility include everything that support our delivering. We must eliminate everything that handicap it. This include slides.

Screenshot - 2009-04-06 , 21_20_27An horrible slide is noise in the communication. It distract the audience.  Therefore, we must get ride of them.

But, in some organization (particularly in big corporation) the slides are made by another department. Communication, product development, etc.

They have expertise in information or in communication, or anything necessary for creating a good document. The problem is; slides are not a document. They are a tool that support the presenter.

The slides must be create and design to support the speaker. They must obey different rules. Most of the time, the peoples creating the slides don’t know those rules.

Then, what is the responsibility of the presenter?

We must push the boundaries.

We must educate our colleagues. Teach them how to design good slides. Refuse to use bad slides.

Maybe it’s not always possible. It depend of the organization, the context, the situation, etc. I understand. But, i never encounter a situation where we cannot find a solution that satisfied everybody.

Sometimes, i took lots of negotiations. Don’t discourage yourself.

Here is an example of bad slide design from the Hillary Clinton campaign. Rick Altman as done an excellent makeover of it.

Share with me: How do you deal with slides made by other department?


Source :
Jeff Bailey Blog and Twitter
Jan Schultink  Blog and Twitter
Rick Altman Web site 

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