*Updated October 12, 2022*
CAPACOA invites performing arts presenters and/or producers to participate in a Digital Discoverability Program, as part of the Linked Digital Future initiative.
Between September 2022 and March 2023, a cohort of 20 organizations will have the opportunity to work with Culture Creates to optimize their event information so it is readable by search engines (ex: Google, Bing) and recommendation systems (ex: Siri, Alexa). As a result, local arts goers and tourists alike will have a much easier time finding your events, no matter which device or application they use.
To participate in the 2022-2023 cohort of the Digital Discoverability program, your organization must:
- Be a CAPACOA member;
- Be primarily a presenting or producing organization (either series and/or festivals);
- Present or produce at least 10 different events from September 2022 onward;
- Have a basic level of digital maturity and have access to the services of a webmaster;
- Designate a discoverability lead. This dedicated staff member will be the primary cohort participant and contact person for the whole duration of the program.
How this will work
If your application is successful, you will receive a personalized diagnosis of your website’s event data. This document will outline your current level of discoverability. It will also provide a list of possible solutions to be worked on with the LDFI and Culture Creates. Solutions may include implementing a structured data template, working with an existing API (application programming interface) or installing a Footlight code snippet (more information below).
In addition to the initial diagnosis, you will receive a basic SEO audit. This document will provide additional discoverability solutions for your event pages by assessing your site map, hyperlinks, meta tags and more.
The estimated value for this kind of personalized website diagnosis is $2,500 – $4,000.
What is structured data
Structured data is markup code embedded in a web page. It describes the content of that page for bots that crawl and index the web for search engines (find out more in this blog post). Other kinds of crawling bots can also read and harvest structured data. For example, bots that harvest events structured data can share it via the Artsdata knowledge graph (more information below).
What is Footlight
Footlight (developed by Culture Creates) offers a data pipeline that supports a vision where the performing arts community can maximize discoverability together, sharing and promoting cultural events on the Web. Footlight integrates the latest semantic technology to ensure machine readability, traceability, and the highest level of quality.
Using natural language processing, Footlight will automatically harvest unstructured or semi-structured live events information on your website and structure this text information into machine-readable data. Once you validate this structured data, you can republish it as HTML-embedded, JSON-LD microdata on your website.
Footlight also takes advantage of Artsdata, Canada’s knowledge graph for arts events. This means that event information shared to Artsdata as linked open data is readily available to anyone who wants to reuse it. There are also options to create external links to other entities on the Web, like performing arts companies, arts organizations, artists, and places –– if and when they are available. This open data can be reused on other platforms, such as CAPACOA’s LIVE Performing Arts Directory.
Ultimately, Footlight enables arts organizations to easily share information about events in their communities. A positive outcome is the streamlining of event promotion.
What you should expect
Cohort participants should anticipate a time commitment of approximately 8 to 40 hours over the September 2022 – March 2023 period. This number will depend on the number of performances in their programming and the discoverability solutions they choose.
Cohort participants will need to:
- Join the LDFI and Culture Creates for an initial meeting via web conference;
- Participate in additional training sessions (depending on their chosen discoverability solution);
- Collaborate with their webmaster to implement discoverability solutions on the backend of their website; and,
- Work one-on-one with Culture Creates to troubleshoot any technical issues.
Cohort participants will be onboarded one at a time and selected primarily on a first come, first served basis. If selected, participants may begin their initial training session before the application deadline.
Unselected applicants will have the opportunity to apply for a future cohort.
How to apply
Interested organizations must fill in an application form.
The deadline for applications is Tuesday November 1, 2022. Applications may close at an earlier date if the cohort is already complete.
About the Linked Digital Future Initiative
The Linked Digital Future Initiative deploys a range of research, prototyping and digital literacy activities to foster discoverability, digital collaboration and digital transformation in the performing arts.
The Linked Digital Future Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada and by the Canada Council for the Arts.