I mentioned last week that we’ve been planning some awesome, and that it will be coming soon. Essentially, it will be built around a very simple system, allowing us to have a really collaborative and very involving online event, that will capture lots of really useful knowledge and archive it for future reference.

In principle, it will work in three stages:

1) The provocation

It starts with someone clever who has something to say. They will speak for 10 minutes and we will stream it online. It will be about music. It will be helpful. It will be interesting. It will be challenging. It will make you think. It will last for no more than ten minutes.

Like a TED talk, only snappy – and not just interesting, but directly relevant to you personally.

2) The roundtable discussion

There will be three clever people sitting at a table to discuss the provocation and the issues it raises. That discussion will last 30-45 minutes and will no doubt be lively and interesting. That will also be streamed online so you can watch that take place.

But the one in the middle has an extra job – and this is the clever bit.

3) The participation

At your end, somewhere out there on the internet, you’ll be able to watch and hear the conversation take place – but you will also be able to contribute in a text-based chat room.

The clever bit is that it’s the job of the middle roundtabler to watch the chatroom and bring YOUR questions, comments and observations into the discussion:

“Hang on – looks like Sarah has a different opinion. She says…”

…and so on.

The really, really clever bit
We’re archiving everything. We’re recording the provocation, the roundtable discussion – and we’re saving the text chat as well. We want this to be searchable, taggable, cross-indexable and above all, findable. We want this to continue to be useful later.

We’re also going to do one more thing that we think will be useful: we’re going to ask everyone who was involved in the discussion, the online chat and the provocation to Tweet the most interesting thing to come out of that whole discussion for them. A hashtag will allow us to capture all that stuff and assemble it together on the website.

The overarching principle is that we should ALL emerge slightly smarter and more knowledgeable, and with more useful information than when we started all this.

The presupposition
Our starting point will be that we don’t need to keep having the conversation about whether the internet is a good thing for music. That one stopped being interesting some years back. We’re going to start from the position that the internet is AWESOME for music. So now what?

We’re ironing out the tech with the clever Amplified team and organising the dates. There’ll be an interesting international dimension to this process, and we’re going to be doing it a few times over the space of a couple of days. We think that the gaps in between the talk sessions will be just as important.

People need to process, to talk things through in the ‘coffee breaks’ and perhaps to go and blog their thoughts, to add to the weight and value of the overall conversation.

Best of all? I promise I won’t be doing any of the graphics.