When most people go on holiday they like to know where they are going and what they'll be doing, but Indiana June is not like most people. Ex-pat Kiwi Diana Tansey, aka Indiana June, has chucked in her copy writing career to cycle around the world, traveling to wherever social media decides.
The ex-pat Kiwi has previously worked at Publicis Mojo in Brisbane, Singleton Ogilvy & Mather in Sydney, CDP in London, and for the last three years at Irish International BBDO in Dublin.
Her new style of travel blog invites people to vote what happens next in her real-life adventure story and wherever gets the most votes, she cycles to and then shares the experience online. Followers worldwide have sent her zigzagging across Ireland for everything from the crowning of a goat to swimming with a dolphin and her most recent destination is France.
“I've always said life is about the journey, not the destination - now I'm putting that philosophy to the test”, states Indiana. So far her French journey involved watching the All Blacks play France in Paris and now she is cycling the Loire Valley.
When talking about how she came up with the concept, Indiana said, "I literally wrote down a list of all the things I love in life and then came up with a way to combine them all at once. I love spontaneous travel, meeting locals, hearing their stories and of course cycling from place to place at my own pace.”
A recent survey by British Cycling revealed that women avoid cycling because of safety concerns, lack of knowledge of routes, and having no one to cycle with. Says Indiana, “I hope to prove that these factors shouldn't stop you from getting on a bike and having fun”.
Wondering about the name? While on a recent trip home to New Zealand, a fat-fingered customs official mistyped her name as 'Indiana June' into his computer, giving her the inspiration for her on-the-road character.
Indiana June is no stranger to quirky ways of travelling. In 2007, she did a 20-country road trip through Europe with three antipodean friends in a purple ice cream van. Indiana June explains, “I hope to be on the road for up to a year, publishing stories, photos, drawings and videos along the way and anyone with a bicycle or an Internet connection is welcome to join me.”
Indiana June is taking the explosion of social media to a whole new level, interacting with thousands of followers who will ultimately decide the destiny of this pick-a-path adventure.
To find out what's next for Indiana June or to place your vote, go to www.indianajune.com .
This isn't the first journey to be guided by social media, in March 2009 the twitchhiker Paul Smith made it halfway around the world, and raised over five thousand pounds for his favourite charity in the process. He relied on twitter for both directions and accommodation.
And in June 2010 there was 'David on Demand' which took it to a whole new level by live video-streaming the social experiment. David Perez wanted to go to the Advertising Festival in Cannes. Chicago agency Leo Burnett agreed to send him on one condition - he had to do anything his followers tweet him.
The idea was to demonstrate the power of real time advertising by putting one man's life in the hands of his twitter followers and video streaming the experiment live 24/7 via his webcam, and was a huge success.