Discoverability for Creative Content

Intro: Content Everywhere

Artists and art organizations need to connect with audiences. Today, the easiest methods are creating content for computer, tablet and phone, or sharing content on social media. With the growth of device types and internet speed there are many more places content can reach. Audiences would like to connect to content when they want it, how they want it and where they want it. As a result, artist digital content needs to be formatted to reach all these places.

The increase in types of devices such as smart watches and speakers, digital content aggregators and better technology for voice and accessibility means that content can be accessed through expanding means. The development of 5G worldwide will mean that even more data can move faster across available pipelines. On the flip side, there are still places in Canada with little or no internet connection, especially rural areas. Some Canadians access the internet at the library.

In this resource, you’ll learn how to use Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and other best practices to ensure your digital content reaches as many people as possible – including Disabled Canadians. The good news is, the best practice to address both situations is the same: keep content in the simplest form so all can access it. At the end we’ll share some thoughts on what the future will bring and some alternatives to internet giants.

    1. SEO

  • a. What is Search Engine Optimization and Why Does it Matter?

  • b. Keyword Research and Planning

  • c. On-Page SEO

  • d. Off-Page SEO

  • e. Social Media

  • f. Optimizing Images

  • g. Optimizing Videos

  • h. Measuring Results


    2. Audiences with Disabilities

  • a. Access is a Human Right

  • b. Inclusion of the Disabled Community

  • c. Understanding Disabled User Needs

  • d. Content Formats


    3. The Future

    New technology is changing the way audiences consume information, but also increasing the ways in which artists and art organizations can deliver it.

  • a. Internet of Things (IoT)

  • b. Voice

  • c. Artificial Intelligence (AI)

  • d. Exponential Growth of Media


    4. Alternatives to Internet Giants

  • Artists and art organizations are now very dependent on the top search engine in the world Google, along with artificial intelligence, and that raises some issues.

    Google was found to have acquired the personal health records of 50 million Americans without their consent. “The forces taking the web in the wrong direction have always been very strong,” www founder Tim Berners-Lee said. Whether you’re a company or a government, controlling the web is a way to make huge profits, or a way of ensuring you remain in power. In Toronto the Google Sidewalk project was cancelled due to citizen’s concerns about data ownership.

    Citizens are arguably the most important part of this, because it’s only citizens who are motivated to hold government and business to account. Many people and organizations are concerned about the hold of internet giants. Here’s some examples of what they are doing to create alternatives:

    1. Toronto based tech company Vubble and Seneca College have launched an innovative AI Video Categorization Project. They advocate for human driven keyword tagging to offset the AI data stereotypes that are dogging our internet world
    2. Sir Tim Berners Lee has created a World Wide Web Foundation and is calling for a free web where profits don’t decide what happens and where individuals can store their data in one place and control it.
    3. There are many apps and other initiatives underway to preserve languages. AI systems give preference to the most commonly spoken languages in the world. Languages that are not captured by Google are at a disadvantage in search. For example Google only translates two Indigenous languages in the Americas. You can help by contributing to initiatives such as Opie Robots.
    4. DuckDuckGo was founded in 2008 by Gabriel Weinberg, who wanted to create a new search engine, with better results and less spam. The search engine, which registers around 50 million searches per day, uses hundreds of sources for its results, including Russia’s Yandex. The company says it has a simple privacy policy of not storing or sharing personal information.
    5. Blockchain and edge computing may be two future alternatives. EU research tells us that these two technologies may be able to come together to provide a means for individuals to store their data and control it within the data lake that is likely in the future. Will this also apply to art and art organization material?
    6. Facebook alternative MeWe, a social networking app that claimed to fiercely protect user privacy. However has come under fire for attracting far right proponents.

    5. Research Team



    This resource was researched and written by Sage Lovell, Althea Manasan and Barb Taylor. Project team includes Editor Ananda Korchynski, UX designer Althea Balmes, Project Leads Madi Piller of PIX FILM Collective and Barb Taylor of Coyle Films. Special thanks to Alexandra Gelis. Funded by Canada Arts Council Digital Program, this project was initiated by Barb Taylor to share new trends in SEO with artists. Participating organizations include Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto, PIX FILM Collective and BC Alliance for the Arts. Thanks to our gracious web home IMAA! Special thanks to workshop ASL interpreters Amanda Hyde, Carmelle Cachero and Thurga Kanagasekarampillai.


    Logo of Coyle Films

    Logo PIX FILM Collective

    Logo of Liaison of Independent Film and Television

    Logo of BC Alliance Arts and Culture

    Logo of of Deaf Spectrum

    Logo of IMAA

    Logo of Canada Councile for the Arts