Where and how do we find information about events to attend in our free time in the evenings or weekends, when we travel, during our vacation? How we make our choice among all existing offers in the arts, cultural, tourism, leisure, entertainment, recreation, sport and education sectors? The answer of course depends on many factors, among them: our personal preferences, the city where we live, or which we visit;. Many demographic and economic characteristics influence our choices as well (our age, professional affiliation, gender, annual incomes, etc.).
Browsing Internet becomes more and more popular way to look for information on upcoming events. Some cities have one comprehensive events calendar for arts, culture and entertainment events. For other cities, there are many websites with different level of information-sometimes confusing users which one is reliable and updated. There are also cities for which finding information on upcoming events is quite hard.
The web-based calendars of events can be divided in several groups. Some websites are editorially controlled by a local authority, government agency, tourism office, or a non-profit organisation. In other cases users are mainly responsible for uploading content. Here are suggestions who could be the online information providers on upcoming cultural, artistic, entertainment and other events:
– Websites of city tourism boards and departments;
– Websites of cultural and artistic networks in the region and in the city;
– Events calendars of key cultural organisations in the city;
– Media websites (radio, TV, press);
– National online information resources related to arts, culture and recreation;
– Global events calendars.
Due to the rapidly increasing online community phenomena and the use of social networks, global events calendars are becoming more and more popular. In many cases users not only receive information, but also upload information and actively share points of views and comments. There are options to look who from your friends might join the event, to give a ranking to an event, to look for other users’ preferences.
Here are several famous global events-related websites. Try them! It is fun, easy and free:
Events Settler provides a place for anyone needing to publicize events, to find places to go and things to do in cities around the world. The offered events are diverse: schools, animals, networking, reading, sport, clubs, bars, outdoor, talks, spiritual events, charity meetings and much more. The events are searchable by : week, day, month, and keywords.
IQEvents is a web-based social-networking service that allows people to post, find and share events and event related information. There are many options offered:
– to select a city;
– to choose among different fields, e.g.: music, theatre, art, film, but also: nightlife, sport, comedy, charity, arts club and more;
– to become a member and “subscribe for an event”;
– to buy a ticket online.
Timeout is a guide to what’s happening in the most exciting cities of the planet. Users can share their experiences when travelling, related to city’s attractions, restaurants, hotels, places to visit, arts&entertainment, festivals&events, shopping and more.
Upcoming Events on Yahoo provides an extraction of events based on a specific location (city). There is an option for users to add event after subscribing/log in, as well as interactive options to tell the community of friends: “I’m going” and “i’m interested”. This is an effective way to stay connected with your friends and colleagues and to knows who joins where.
Worldweb contains more than 400,000 web pages of travel information. Provides listings of tour operators, accommodation, entertainment, events, shopping, galleries, hotels and more (searchable by city).
Finally, a comment addressed to cultural professionals – marketing managers and coultual economists:
Web-based calendars of cultural and artistic events are still not used as analytical tools – the balance between online cultural supply and demand on a city level is not explored yet. Cultural economists look mainly on statistics and figures related to “offline” connection between cultural production and cultural participation, between investments and benefits in the cultural sector, or how culture contributes to the overall economic development of a region or a city. Cultural economists and marketing managers need to find tools to explore the way audiences, cultural producers and cultural investors approach the online world – to look at economic and marketing indicators related to users’ online activities (e.g. demand-supply equilibrium, ratio between investing in cultural infrastructure and direct returns of investments based on ticket sales and other monetary indicators of audiences participations).
For events calendars of European and international networks, look at Culture News folder of LabforCulture and plan to attend a professional workshop, conference, working group or a summit.
Rea the blog post also on LabforCulture – the networking platform for information on European arts and culture.