Social Slam is a platform for artists and event organizers encompassing several branches of the creative industries. It enables them to present their work effectively during the Corona crisis (and beyond), to reach their audience, and to network with other artists, organisers, and supporters. Through the platform the audience can find a variety of slams featuring local artists and organisers, provide personal tips and encouragement and financially support artists through the purchasing of tickets. The audience can watch the stream from their homes, participate and react live to what is happening on stage.
Impact to Society
Streaming has been the “go-to” solution for artists and performers since lockdown has been imposed across European countries. Established artists began to use their social media channels or appropriated streaming services like Twitch in order to entertain and reach out to their audiences. Whilst other cultural institutions have established their own platforms and business models, like the Berlin club scene who created UnitedWeStream. However many individual artists and smaller cultural communities do not have the reach, networks and technical resources to establish a streaming channel by themselves. Even more importantly, streaming can be a one-way-street to consumers instead of a shared interactive cultural experience between performers and audiences in their local communities. SocialSlam offers a solution for artists, organisers, and audiences to transfer their interaction from local clubs, galleries and stages to the digital space. SocialSlam is focused on local interaction – audiences can stay in touch with and support artists in their neighbourhood, and artists can generate an income. This solution is applicable everywhere in the EU where people who are physically isolated want to participate in cultural events and interact with artists and others in the audience.
SocialSlam offers an immediate and easy-to-use solution for artists, organisers, and audiences on a local level during the current lockdown of the Corona crisis. The slam format hosted by an organiser, who can also participate, encourages interaction on multiple levels and introduces a playful element to the production - initially this will be rolled out in three phases. In the first phase, organisers and artists can link their profile to their Paypal or webshops. In the second phase, the audience can directly tip performers of the live stream they are currently watching. In the third phase, local businesses might sponsor food and drinks for events, and other artists may provide workshops for participants in the backstage area. As Corona changes “normality” for good, SocialSlam aims to offer access to live entertainment for artists and audiences regardless of age or disabilities. If you have access to a device with a camera and wifi, you can show your work and shine.
There is a clickable version of the SocialSlam prototype linked in our devpost profile. In this phase of development, we concentrated on basic features to make a live streaming event work for a host and several artists performing consecutively in a single project stream. These include the landing page, search function, login to create profiles and projects, the streaming room, and the audience interface with the video and buttons/links to generate income. To be turned into a ready-to-use product within the next three to six months, SocialSlam needs to secure financial resources for web server space and to onboard two more programmers for backend/frontend respectively. If the platform grows quickly it might need to cooperate with an existing streaming service.
Business Plan and Resources
SocialSlam has been in development since the German WirVsVirus Hackathon from March 20–22, 2020 and was subsequently among the 130 projects chosen for participation in the WirVsVirus Enabler programme. The current team has pledged to work continuously on the solution for the next three to six months. For feedback from our target audience in Germany, we can draw on the professional contacts of our team members. Within the Enabler programme and in comparison to other streaming projects, it has become clear that SocialSlam does have a unique selling point with its focus on bringing local art communities together. It joins economic value – i.e. generating income for artists and cultural organisers in their local communities – and societal value – i.e. supporting and keeping the cultural scene alive as an integral part of public life in towns, now transferred to the digital space. Additionally, potential advertising and business partners will have positive and increased publicity due to their engagement in times of crisis. To implement the solution, we need resources in the form of legal and business advice, especially concerning the conditions of use for the platform and the form of the (business) organisation. Ideally, we would also like funding to pay our team members appropriate fees for crucial work packages. Our agenda for the next four to six weeks includes testing the prototype with artists and writing funding proposals with a detailed business plan.
The Prototype was built with Razzle and Strapi and is hosted on Heroku. The resources are provided by Salesforce.com Deutschland. The provided code is open source.
Special thanks to
Participating Artists Yuta Maruyama, Viktor Podstrelnov, Joker, Avid Moss, Wei Ken Jeffrey Liao, Adrian Wans, Dani Hann, Matti Levesque, Eskindir Tesfay, Yasin Kamat, Dariusz Misztal, Dominic Baumann, Claudia Dalchow, Maria Einfeldt, Julia Heiser, Maria Campobasso
for the lectorate Shannon O´Hara