Notes from the Communications Workgroup
Date: October 12, 2010
Time: 1:00pm EST
Attendees:
Brian Ahier, Noam Arzt, John Blair, Janet Campbell, Karen Donovan, Rich Elmore, Arien Malec, Uvinie Hettiaratchy, Caitlin Ryan

Actions

Actions for This Week


#
Date
Action
Status
Owner
Due Date
40
10/12/10
Send Rich Elmore an e-mail about changing the URLs
Open
Brian Behlendorf
10/19/10
41
10/12/10
Continue conversations with ONC to find presentation opportunities at HIMSS
Open
Arien Malec
10/19/10
42
10/12/10
Assist in drafting of workgroup status “vignette” for implementation geographies
Open
Noam Arzt, Karen Donovan, Brian Ahier, John Blair
10/19/10
43
10/12/10
Look to other WG membership for assistance with some of the other communications priorities (i.e. other workgroup vignettes)
Open
Rich Elmore
10/19/10

Actions from Last Week

#
Date
Action
Status
Owner
Due Date
37
10/5/10
Reach out about participating as part of a featuerette at the Connect-a-thon.
Open
Janet Campbell
10/12/10
38
10/5/10
Add communications resources to the Communications Launch table.
Ongoing
WG members
Ongoing

Agenda


  1. Rebranding
  2. Communications Launch
  • Standards committee presentation - Malec
  • Blog (simultaneous O'Reilly, THCB, others?) - Kibbe, Elmore
  • Prepare & Distribute Press Release - seeking volunteer
  • ONC coordination (web site update, other?) - seeking volunteer + Uvinie
  • Implementation geographies vignette - seeking volunteer
  • Best Practices vignette - seeking volunteer
  • Reference implementation vignette - seeking volunteer
  • <Direct Project> web site - seeking volunteer
  • Others?

Notes


Notes

Rich Elmore
  • Asked Arien Malec for an update on renaming


Arien Malec
  • Over the past couple weeks the community assembled a really nice list of suggestions for new names for NHIN Direct
  • The Communications WG vetted the name and narrowed down the list to a few suggestions.
  • Since then he has learned two things:
  • 1) The Nationwide Health Information Network is starting to use NWHIN more frequently
  • But HHS is very conservative about trademarks to the extent that even the impression of or possibility of trademark infringement is grounds for not going forward with a suggested name
  • Some of the ideas that had the most support last week also had active trademark status in areas not identical to but aligned with the kind of uses we were talking about
  • 2) There is both a benefit and cost of doing a name change
  • Would be best to align with the name changes to the Nationwide Health Information Network
  • Coming up with a new identity would cause as many problems as it would solve, by suggesting fragmentation or divergent branding strategies
  • ONC’s internal view is that “Direct Project” seems like a good term for now
  • No obstacle in the short term to leave the domain name as “nhindirect”
  • It would be best to operate with a name change that worked in concert with the overall name change
  • “Health Internet Direct,” for example, might conflict with the Nationwide Health Information Network rebranding.
  • Even if there is not a large communications push around rebranding, a lot of overall activities will drive communications
  • Nationwide Health Information Network name change will hopefully be announced soon


Uvinie Hettiaratchy
  • They are aiming for a name change by November


Rich Elmore
  • Asked if there is a way for the Communications WG receive inside knowledge to prepare for a Nationwide Health Information Network name change


Arien Malec
  • They want to approach the name change in a way that is unlike everything else in this project, not transparent or widely communicated
Can appropriately coordinate


Rich Elmore
  • They can do the work they need to do with a “fill in the blank here”
  • Asked for additional questions or comments on the naming


Brian Behlendorf
  • For now the wiki is still at nhindirect.org
  • Can probably change the standard email address to direct@nhindirect.org


Arien Malec
  • Thanks to Rich Elmore, we can have an alias of directproject.org


Rich Elmore
  • Needs to transfer over to Brian Behlendorf


Brian Behlendorf
  • Will send Rich Elmore an email
  • Do we want to clean up everything?


Rich Elmore
  • Proposed building out the website
  • We might decide what to do on that strategy at the end of this call or after


Brian Behlendorf
  • URL to project out publicly, could use the wiki
  • Renaming all the URLs
  • Would help with some of that


Rich Elmore
  • Need a clean website for people looking for information, not already involved with the project
  • Could take the best of Janet’s team and the other WGs and get information in one organized place so people can understand what is most current and relevant
  • Communications Launch
  • Wanted to do a communications event around the renaming or the completion of project pieces, such as the reference implementation, documentation
  • In an effort to prepare for that communications event, he wants to focus efforts on key areas
  • In the agenda, he listed a number of work items to choose from, depending on capacity, volunteers
  • Wanted to stimulate thinking on what we want to do in terms of education and information and trying to create leverage for a communications effort


Noam Arzt
  • Asked about the mandate of the Direct Project activities, because it seems activities are scheduled to wind down at the end of October


Arien Malec
  • When we launched, we had a goal of getting all the work wrapped up by October.
  • Internally, the original vision was to quickly get to real-world exchange and deliver capabilities by that time
  • The contract he was originally working under ended by November
  • Right now he sees tremendous progress and loves where the project is going, but is very conscious that those original November goals will not be met
  • Will most likely be January, not November
  • The project will transition into a different role as we transition into operational pilots
  • With the launch of the Standards and Interoperability framework at ONC, the work of the Direct Project will be coordinated with and placed into a wider context
  • The work we’ve done here is being used as a nice model for how to do future coordination work within the ONC
  • The transition point will be January, rather than November
  • Transition is going to be to a broader framework, including both directed messaging and other key critical aspects of standards development and interoperability


Noam Arzt
  • Will we continue to meet through the end of the year?


Arien Malec
  • Yes, we should extend the calendar invites out to the end of January


Arien Malec
  • For the last week of October, during the face to face meeting, Wednesday and Thursday meetings will be cancelled but Tuesday meetings will be held


Rich Elmore
  • Not a definitive list, but here are the priorities we could choose from:
    • Standards committee presentation - Malec
    • Blog (simultaneous O'Reilly, THCB, others?) - Kibbe, Elmore
    • Prepare & Distribute Press Release - seeking volunteer
    • ONC coordination (web site update, other?) - seeking volunteer + Uvinie
    • May be other points of coordination as well
    • Personalized…paragraph-type recaps from the WGs
    • Do we want to create a clean, fresh website given the name changes?
    • Key resources from other WGs
    • Implementation geographies vignette - seeking volunteer
    • Best Practices vignette - seeking volunteer
    • Reference implementation vignette - seeking volunteer
    • <Direct Project> web site - seeking volunteer
    • Others?

Round the Room on Communications Priorities -
questions/comments/suggestions

  • Likes the idea
  • To do right and well, it would help to have somebody who knows what they are doing and is not doing it on a volunteer basis
  • Organizing in a way that is pleasing to the eye is a contract-worthy job
Noam Arzt
  • Echoed Janet’s concern
  • One item we might want to add is some sort of purposeful and targeted coordination with other conferences and events
  • Could see some collection of potential events where the Direct Project should perhaps have some exposure
  • Could range from a flyer on a table to an article or ad in a conference newsletter to full-blown participation
  • Reached out to HIMSS organizers, but he needs to follow up
  • Other concern is about being careful because the pilot implementations are just beginning, and he wants to make sure to not become hype instead of reality, saying too much too soon
  • We have lots to say about architecture and plans, but cannot say the wrong things about what is happening in the filed
  • Is willing to help on any part of this, can help Uvinie Hettiaratchy with ONC coordination
*
Karen Donovan
  • No additional comments
Brian Ahier
  • Waned to get some clarity about Rich Elmore’s blog entry

Rich Elmore
  • David Kibbe and Rich Elmore had talked about doing a blog post together, but would like Brian’s assistance as well
John Blair
  • Asked about the timeline and if these priorities spanned the full communications spectrum

Rich Elmore
  • This is before we are in a good place to talk about the results of the pilot projects, which should be around January
  • The WG can decide when to start the first stage; previously was coordinated around renaming, but now there might be an opportunity in November
  • Then stage 2 is when there is adequate progress on the implementation geographies, reference implementation, and documentation
  • Stages 3 would be HIMSS
  • Stage 4 is a more general launch

John Blair
  • This list is good
  • Agrees with comments on having someone from a PR firm or marketing background get involved
  • Thinks the whole list could be stretched across the different segments or the whole thing would be done 3-4 times?

Rich Elmore
  • Was concentrating on the first two stages, in forming these priorities

John Blair
  • Asked if is there was anything further on the effort to present at HIMSS
  • There were discussions about side demos at the Connect-a-thon

Noam Arzt
  • Doesn’t remember what the HIMSS organizers responded to him with

Rich Elmore
  • Janet Campbell was going to check on presenting at the Connect-a-thon

Janet Campbell
  • Sent contact info to Arien Malec

Uvinie Hettiaratchy
  • ONC will be present there, will coordinate with ONC to appear together
  • Should assume that Direct Project will have a booth

Arien Malec
  • Direct Project will have a booth and a speaking opportunity
  • For HIMSS planning, need to work in the system and not against the system
  • Will have more information next week
  • All the work Janet Campbell and John Blair have done has been very helpful
Brian Behlendorf
  • Would like to send a message more developer oriented, advertising the code-a-thon to people on the fringes who have a background in health IT and open source
  • He crafted out a message that can be found on the face to face wiki page
  • Asked WG members to view, comment on the page
  • Is not trying to disrupt the larger communications launch, but wanted to get a message out sometime soon

Rich Elmore
  • Any communication not too complicated or too off-base is good communication
  • Suggested Brian Behlendorf go ahead without feedback from this group


Rich Elmore
  • Asked Arien Malec about getting some PR-type assistance for this effort


Arien Malec
  • There are a set of people at ONC who coordinate activities
  • ONC has a lot of opportunities to get the message out in a compelling way
  • The ONC and HHS in general are very conservative about forms of communication
  • Things like a press release or a formal marketing campaign actually require a ton of internal coordination
  • We’ve got the coordination of people and money allocated to do things like that, but it is a very difficult process
  • What we’re doing now is coordinating the work of the Communications WG with weekly coordination meeting around the greater Nationwide Health Information Network, to better coordinate strategies
  • Is dubious about getting an effective marketing/communications role for the Direct Project
  • Can make really good use of the opportunities we have at ONC to get the message out in compelling ways:
    • Scheduling times at the HIT Standards Committee meetings,
    • Doing appropriate blog posts on the ONC blog at the right times
  • Those kinds of events need to be driven by newsworthy real world activities


Rich Elmore
  • Asked, for naming timeline purposes, if there are target events WG should know of


Arien Malec
  • Two upcoming compelling target events:
    • 1) Wrapping up the specs and reference implementation work, being able to announce that we have a finalized spec and finalized reference implementation
    • 2) Starting real world operations


Rich Elmore
  • Asked about the timing of those events


Arien Malec
  • 1) End of October
    • Would love to coordinate launch with meeting of HIT Standards Committee on November 30, 2010
    • December 17 would be the next opportunity to present, which might be worse than November
    • Would like to present at the October meeting, but it overlaps with the first day of the Code-a-thon
    • Would point out that the Direct Project is still in flight
    • Despite the timing, November 30 is probably the best option
  • 2) By January we will have real world operations
    • There is no January meeting on the calendar yet
    • Standards or Policy Committee meetings are best places to give a big announcement around this time


Rich Elmore
  • Policy committee, best practices


Arien Malec
  • Can coordinate with the Tiger Team


Rich Elmore
  • Suggested returning to the list of communications priority items
  • Noam added conferences
  • Some agreement this was a good starting point list
  • Agrees that there is a particular skill set we might not have within the WG
  • Thinks we can find folks within this WG who can move forward, not that daunting
  • To be effective, these vignettes need to be a paragraph or two


Arien Malec
  • ONC won’t do a press release
  • But we can do a blog post, which has a similar effect
  • Best kind of press release would be done by member organizations of the implementation groups
  • All of you could take internally to your PR departments


Noam Arzt
  • Asked to clarify if the vignettes would point to the WGs or the work, the implementation geographies


Rich Elmore
  • Will highlight what is happening with the implementation geographies, giving visibility and understanding of how the pilots are going to work.
  • Idea would be to coordinate with the WGs to pull out compelling stories to see what is happening with best practices or implementation or pilots


Karen Donovan
  • Where do we plan on posting or publishing these vignettes?


Rich Elmore
  • Informational website that brings together the best of the info from the wiki
  • Could be used for the blogs
  • Could deploy through a number of communications channels.


Noam Arzt
  • Thinks they could be available on the wiki to be used in some other medium
  • So in that respect, it might be nice to have vignettes about pilot projects in both paragraph form and slide form


Karen Donovan
  • For the pilots, suggested reaching out to the leaders of the pilots and asking them to put together a couple slides and/or a brief paragraph
  • Then we could work with them to put together into a marketing message


Noam Arzt
  • Assumed anything written about the pilots would have their involvement
  • Introduced tension of uniformity versus individual contribution

Rich Elmore
  • For the communications key messaging, they did not structure initially, but instead let people think through, then added structure to the message after

Round the Room:
Janet Campbell
  • Swamped but will take a second look
Noam Arzt
  • Can help with vignettes about implementation pilots themselves
Karen Donovan
  • Can also assist with implementation geographies
Brian Ahier
  • Can also assist with implementation geographies
John Blair
  • Can also assist with implementation geographies


Rich Elmore
  • Can look for assistance from other WGs where there is no direct assistance offered from this WG