Webinar: The State of Online Community

The State of Online Community
A webinar sponsored by the Online Community Research Network
December 11, 2008, 11:00 am PST

Register at http://ocstate.eventbrite.com >>

Join online community expert, Bill Johnston of Forum One Networks for highlights from the Online Community Research Network 2008 research series and a discussion of trends on the horizon for 2009. Session highlights will include:

  • Online community strategy and ownership
  • Community as an ecosystem
  • Budget, headcount and compensation
  • The evolving role of management and moderation


Please note: Attendance is FREE but limited to 200 people. Register early to reserve your spot!

Tool Tip: Qik.com - Streaming video from your phone

qikWith new video streaming web services, broadcasting a live event or workshop is finally possible without a huge price tag attached to it (that is if you don't need high-end video quality).
Qik.com ­is a remarkable software application that allows users to seamlessly stream videos straight from the phone to the web. Users to utilize their cell phones like a camcorder to capture interesting events for hours without worrying about the storage capacity of the cell phone. Streaming works best with a wi-fi connection but even when connected via 3G the delay is minimal, even though video will be streamed at a lower quality. The software requires installation on the phone and having an unlimited data plan is important, as a substantial amount of bandwidth is consumed while streaming video. Qik currently supports a wide range of cell phones like Nokia 3250, Nokia 5500, Nokia N-series, Nokia E-series, iPhone and some selected windows mobile phones. And it is constantly adding support for new mobile devices.
Give it a try at Qik.com >> ­

Change.gov - Early signs of a new political style?

President-elect Barack Obama has launched the website change.gov, where you can find news about the transition and inauguration and information about his agenda. Interestingly, the site also has a place for people to share their ideas for government and their stories about the campaign. This might be an early answer to the question I raised in my last post...

Economy___Change.gov_1226087700907 

How will Barack Obama employ social media as president?

What a wonderful day! And plenty of observers have already noted the key role that the Internet and social media played in the successful campaign of Barack Obama. But the question that strikes me is: when he’s President, how will he utilize the hundreds of thousands of MySpace friends, Facebook fans, Twitter followers, My.BarackObama.com members, and SMS opt-ins, just to name a few, to advance his policies and­ ­­politics­? Are we on the verge of a new era of eParticipation in politics?

Twitter VoteReport - Live election tracking

­­Just a quick note for folks interested in following the election today. If you want a fun way to track what's going on across the country in real time, check out Twitter VoteReport (that link is a graphical map view, to view the text updates, click here) - which unfortunately seems to be down at the moment, guess web traffic is taking it's toll. You can check incoming messages from voters on Twitter itself, if the service remains unavailable. These are reports sent in live from people all over the place.

And if you have a Twitter account yourself, just include #votereport in your tweet to get it published to the VoteReport page.

You May Soon Know if You’re Hogging the Discussion

Interesting, wonder what this could mean for facilitators:

People who want to improve their communication skills may one day have an unusual helper: software programs that analyze the tone, turn-taking behavior and other qualities of a conversation. The programs would then tell the speakers whether they tend to interrupt others, for example, or whether they dominate meetings with monologues, or appear inattentive when others are talking.

The inventor of this technology is Alex Pentland of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who has developed cellphone-like gadgets to listen to people as they chat, and computer programs that sift through these conversational cadences, studying communication signals that lie beneath the words.

If commercialized, such tools could help users better handle many subtleties of face-to-face and group interactions — or at least stop hogging the show at committee meetings.

in NYTimes, read full article >>

eParticipation - Electronic Participation of Citizens and the Business Community in eGovernment

Recently released: In 2007 the German Federal Ministry of the Interior has ordered a study ”eParticipation - Electronic Participation of Citizens and the Business Community in eGovernment”, to review current practices of eParticipation in Germany and generate recommendations for future activities. The results of the study have been presented to Minister of the Interior Wolfgang Schäuble in Mai 2008. The Study is now available in English and can be downloaded h­ere >>

Youtube Annotations with Hyperlinks

I've played around with Youtube's video annotation but not until recently did I discover that it actually allows users to include hyperlinks (why wouldn't it, duh?). In the meantime there are a couple of great examples where filmmakers have put together a series of short movies where the viewer decides the course of the story. The concept is obviously not new, but all of a sudden available to anybody and really taking 5min bite-size online video to a different level.

I really think this would be a great way to present information in civic engagement projects, where participants make trade-offs and see a different course of action depending on the choices they make. Will put a demo together shortly...

Text Messaging in Obama Campaign

I'm a subscriber of Barack Obama's text message alerts and have been impressed by how the campaign makes use of it so far. The messages usually alert subscribers to current events, like "Watch Barack speak from Berlin at approx 1pm ET. The speech will be live on CNN & streamed at http://barackobama.com/live. Please fwd this msg.". The advantage of sms over email is clearly that it alerts or reminds subscribers immediately, while they might not check their emails until later. I was fascinated to hear the news that the campaign would first announce Obama's running mate via text message in order to grow their pool of subscribers. And even though it turned out the news was leaked by CNN first and the exclusivity of the hastingly created sms two hours afterwards was lost, the campaign now has more than 3 million text message subscribers (according to this source), which might prove to be helpful going into crunchtime. Read a more in-depth discussion about the edge that text messaging might give Barack Obama in the upcoming elections >>

Public Agenda's Community Conversation Process

Great roundup of the Community Conversation process in the Achieving the Dream initiative. 

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