Yes, you all know how it works. If Carlsberg did reunions they would probably be the best reunions in the world. Everything would be just perfect. It would organise itself without a hitch, everyone would agree on a location and everyone that everyone wanted would be able to attend. Folk would be talking about it for years to come and it would be the envy of all those that failed to make it. But as in all good stories, there’s a happy ending. Nobody would have missed it at all, because it would have been the best reunion ever. Keep up!

OK, so lets temporarily jump back to reality.
After all, we all know they don’t often happen that way. Thing is, when they are organised by those who are truly passionate about getting every little detail right, they usually do turn out pretty tip top. The only problem is that the more detail you want to pay attention to, the harder it makes the organisation.
So, what to do?
Well, you can always wait until things naturally fall into place and everyone manages to get together. Which, I guess most people would still agree is about the only option. I’m in complete agreement that it’s definitely the best outcome.
What about those who are of the opinion that trying something a little different might just end up being a lot of fun?
What if, you had nothing to lose, didnt have to leave home and the only expense was the price of a broadband connection and your evenings refreshments. Interested?? Then read on..
Technology offers a very simple solution, which with a little bit of thought, planning and organisation, can be almost as much fun as the real thing. Now, don’t worry people, I’m not suggesting some kind of massive webcam affair, or huge chat room set up. This is something so simple that nobody need feel obliged to do anything they’re uncomfortable with.

Let me explain. About 6 months ago, I was introduced to a kind of new phenomonen known as Tim Peaks Diner. In itself, it broke new ground as far as social media is concerned. I’ve written another blog on the subject which you can find here. http://mrpinkster.wordpress.com/2012/02/18/doors-close-on-tim-peaks-diner/
It gives you a good bit of background on why I think having a reunion on Twitter can not only work, but iteslf break new ground in social interaction. Sure, it’s never going to compete with a physical meet up, but actually, I dont know of anyone whose done anything quite like what I’m proposing, so I’m pretty excited about the prospect.

MRPINKSTER PLEASE! JUST GET ON WITH IT ALREADY. WHAT DO WE NEED TO GET GOING?
So it’s really simple. For the purposes of a virtual reunion, I’ll mention the areas of Twitter that technologically will make this work.
1. Get yourself signed up on Twitter. Choosing a username that is easily recognisable as you is good. Register here https://twitter.com/
On the offchance anyone doesn’t know what that is, take a look here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twitter

2.Start following people. This is easy peasy. (I’m @mrpinkster) Search for people, hit follow.
3. Watch your timeline! What makes Twitter ideal for real time interaction is that ‘tweets’ are almost instantaneously posted online. So you’re going to see realtime updates from those you follow.

4. Get a social media dashboard. Don’t worry it’s nothing scary. It’s simply a means of watching a number of social media streams on one page. (Twitter, Facebook, Linked in etc)
What this allows you to do, is sort a number of different streams that make it simple to see whats going on. The two most poular are probably Hootsuite and Tweetdeck. I’ve used both , the current preference being hootsuite.com/ iPod, iPad and Android apps all available.

5. Get comfortable with trending. (the use of the hashtag in posting “Tweets.” It’s an ideal way to follow all posts unique to that phrase, eg #buchanreunion2012)

6. Be imaginative

Once your happy with that little lot, the rest is simple.
As for the actual kind of things that I think will make the virtual re-union fun, I’ll post again soon. But my message here is, think of everything you’d like to do at a physical meet up. I’m no “second life” or “Sims” fan, but the joy of it being virtual is we can do whatever we want. Drinks, music, videos, photos et al.
We can have it in Peterhead, Newcastle, Leeds, London or Brighton. You know what, we can even jump on a plane to Las Vegas at breakneck speed and play in the casino if you fancy.
There are no limitations!

In the meantime, I’ll be watching Twitter for you.
18th/19th May is on for the big (hopefully) virtual reunion.
Finally, if you’ve managed to get to this point and are still awake, I thank you most sincerely for taking the time to read.
Much has changed in the last 20 years, but I still talk too much:)