Sunday, June 03, 2007

Any ideas...?

Hi Folks
I've been thinking. It's been a while now since I introduced the Topica-based eMail Discussion Forum. We've actually attracted around ten or so members but so far there hasn't been any actual discussions taking place. I suppose defeat is a fact of life the same as success and there's little point avoiding this; The Forum has most definitely not been a success.

I'm looking to you'all then for some inspiration as to how to get this thing off the ground. On a slightly more positive note we've had around 80 people respond to the recent posted-out and e-mailed questionnaires. Of those, around 50 or so said they would be interested in contributing to some aspect or other of the community, be that the newsletters, the community news and/or events sections or the Blog. We've now written to these people and asked what type of input they would prefer to make or get involved in. I eagerly await their responses.

Anyway back to the Discussion Forum. I'm sure there are some good options out there, perhaps better one's than Topica; I've always had this sneaky feeling that the e-mail forum approach they take is a little over complicated and messy for people to get into. I myself much prefer the on-screen type forums, you know like the one the Learnwise VLE provided on campus (for those of you that were around during its heyday - The university are replacing Learnwise by the way for those of you that didn't know).

One possibility is the Viadeo network (click on the title or footer-link for more information). Any of you know of it? They have just introduced an online discussion facility and are shortly to bring in full real-time chat a'la Messenger etc. Taken together those two would provide an extremely powerful communications tool between our community members, the like of which may one day arrive inside the friends webALUMNUS site but not I think in the near or foreseeable future. Ah well, we can dream can't we.

Bye for now and meanwhile give me your ideas wont you?

Ray

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