My name is Gladys Ledwith,I live in Buenos Aires and I've been following your messages, tried to log in to the conferences (haven't been able to join live though ) and visited many of the links you all suggest, finding a lot of useful material, everything is so interesting! I also followed Dierdre's link earlier today.
All this is pretty new to me, I've been going around for some time trying to learn as much as I can making all the possible mistakes! I have even opened a ning space for the teachers I work with and a group in Ectolearning so as to share what I'm learning. I would be very thankful if you could visit and give me your feedback.
Reading your messages every day has become an enjoyable habit! Thank you!
Gladys, I checked out your NING group and it looks like it's beginning to take shape! http://teachustech.ning.com One of the most established and well designed NING communities I've come across is Classroom 2.0 http://classroom20.ning.com/. It's up for an edublog award.
I followed the ecotlearning link and it took me to my own dashboard. Did you create something there as well?
I completely get what Emma is saying about Elgg, Facebook, etc being user-centric and NING being community-centric. Maybe that's why, as Deirdre points out, "groups" in Facebook aren't as active as they are in NING. I'd say that's especially true for discussions in FB groups. Announcement type messages seem to be the most common -- wall and event posts, etc. Also, there seems to be a lot of content posting in both places -- videos, photos, links, etc. Much of this activity is what you would expect to see on a blog, but that might not get the same kind of attention.
These days I find that I rely so heavily on pull technology to keep discussions on my radar. No, wait a minute, maybe I mean push? In any case, I just don't take the extra steps to GO somewhere to keep up-to-date. I need RSS or email subscriptions. I also like to be able to link to specific items in other venues without the burden of passwords (I mean if anyone can join, why force a log in?) and mile-long URLs.
I do like the idea of a lasso approach to grouping individuals according to interests or other commonalities. Nancy White wrote an interesting piece called Blogs and Community – launching a new paradigm for online community? I think we're looking at blogs and more at this point. Individuals leave their contributions to discussions here and there, twitter here, blog there...
It seems the ideal would be a design that:
- is open
- has options to hide selected items (like draft posts, maybe membership in a group that
- provides a view on individuals' activities across groups
- alerts/tracks new items, either all, or individual topics
- has RSS for everything
- is a combination of PLE and community.
- plus all the other things I can't think of on a weekend :-)
During Jason Toal's session, Paul Stacey asked if tagging will become a part of our identities. I think he envisioned a tag cloud following him around over his Second Life avatar's head. Hmmm, maybe we need to lasso the tag clouds?
I've had two online faculty development groups in medicine fail because people didn't get email notice of new postings and they were too busy to think about logging in regularly. Our IT people are so committed to the present discussion system that they refuse to install anything else. This is also an issue with the wiki software our campus uses. Several faculty want to use it for committee work but the lack of notification of changes is frustrating.
I just sent you an invitation to join the ecto space we are building. At the moment we are trying to get all the teachers in our school to join and participate. As you say, we are slowly giving it shape, the idea is to familiarize teachers with all the possibilities available. Hope you can visit the ecto page, we have a PPP and a wiki for teachers to learn how to make their own.
Thanks for your comment!