Social Media Smackdown on Episode 7 of The Punch Down!

The Punch Down Episode 7

It’s 12:27pm, 33 minutes until we go live with Episode 7 – cue the now familiar feeling fluttering excitement in my stomach. The laptop power cable is curled under my toes and the external HD camera balances precariously on the top of the thin screen like an elephant on a tightrope.

Looking forward to the pre-show chat, I click to join the Hangout. I’m in. Big smiles – ‘Hi everyone’! The returning hellos are suddenly stunted, everyone is frozen in various poses of salutation. Crap! What’s going on? My internet connection has dropped?! Nooooo! Not now!  While reading Facebook posts or skimming Twitter updates, fine, but not now!

Ok, no problem – breathing in, breathing out – I can fix this. 26 minutes to air. With sticky palms I reach out and turn off the modem. 30 seconds never felt so long, and GO, the whizzing, whirring noises assure me I’ll soon be back online, a reboot always works!

Open Firefox, click the link, it’s working! Phew! Sighing with relief, I can relax and get my wine for the show and enjoy the 21 remaining minutes of pre-show chat with the guests. “Hi Guys, sorry about that – I’m back!” “Hi Taaaaaa”. Are you kidding me?! Again?! Seriously?!

18 minutes to go, I’ve got this.

Ignoring the pounding in my chest, I surge into resourceful mode. With a dirty look at the bloody modem, my right hand deftly working the Mac trackpad to find ‘restart’, my left hand fires for the backup plan pushing the power button of the desktop PC. Ripping the camera from the Mac, stabbing it into the USB port on the PC – crap – have to install it! 11 minutes to go!  Ok, installed, open email, get link, Hangout window opens and yes! I’m connected!

I sink into the softness of the leather chair – I’ve made it with 6 minutes to go. But I don’t have wine! Quick dash to the kitchen – glass slaps the counter, ice clinks, white port splashes – guess it’ll be a strong one – tonic fizzes and lemon spritzes. Race back to the computer, is it still working?! Yes! Can you hear me? YES! You can’t see me?! My camera’s not working!!!! 3 minutes to go!  What the helllll?!

With 1 minute to go, I risk it. Close the Hangout, my breath caught in my throat, click the link, the blue light is on the camera! The window loads, everyone’s there – and yes! That’s me on the end – the camera is WORKING!!! Success!! We’re all there, live in living colour and Joe says “Hey everybody it’s Joe Roberts…”

We’re off to the races!

Our glitches stopped for the hour of the show, but continued afterwards because for some unknown reason the ‘big box’ stays with Joe throughout the show, and on Facebook he apologizes “Sorry, don’t know why my mug is in focus the entire time”, but we think you’ll forgive us as the content of this show freakin’ ROCKS!

If you are in any way active on social media, you MUST watch this episode – it is packed with practical, easy to implement strategies that you can use today to make a difference in your online engagement.

A massive thanks to our guests:

David Honig, founder of Palate Press, the unmatched online wine magazine
Meg Houston Maker, freelance writer doing beautiful things with words at &
Ryan Opaz, digital wine communicator, techy, foodie, wino & co-creator of,, & the Digital Wine Communication Conference
Rick Mulready, our first non-wine guest and social media stud whose podcast, The Inside Social Media Podcast, kicks ass!

With much relief, it’s my pleasure to give you Episode 7:

News about Episode 8, coming soon!

Tara – The Wine Passionista

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