Well, that turned into just as interesting meeting as the first Introductory get together – but about completely different things.

We had a really interesting conversation about how to manage asynchronous conversations when there are so many channels to choose from. It’s easy to imagine starting with a blog post that someone else tweets and which subsequently moves over to email. To paraphrase Derek’s observation, that’s just life. I think such conversations will self manage. The different channels have different characteristics and uses and I think the participants in a conversation will use what’s appropriate. Imagine a phone conversation about throwing a party, followed by something in writing when you begin to plan the guest list or the menu. We don’t think it’s hard to follow because we write down things that are complex or hard to remember or need passing on in some way.

The other main point I drew from this evening’s meeting (that’s Thursday evening UK time) is that there are a lot of people new to the world of blogs and other collaborative tools. I must make sure I give people the room to ask about terms or technology with which they’re unfamiliar.

It was a much smaller group (only half the size), but still managed to cover western North America, several parts of Australia, both main islands in NZ and the UK. Claire Thompson created a Google Map where we can place pins in our locations and demonstrate visually just how far flung we are. Check out Claire’s blog post and get your pin on the map.

I’ve got a feeling it’s going to be a good course with a great bunch of friendly, enthusiastic, supportive students.

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4 Responses to Reflections

  1. What fascinated me was the different conversations that came out of the two meetings. The discussion about the best way to design the course was challenging and I must confess to feeling a tad defensive. That’s a lesson for me to take on board…when you facilitate in an open environment, you must be prepared to be to be open in every way.

  2. Karen Humber says:

    Sarah – I appreciate your openness in expressing your feelings of uncertainty about some things and agree it is essential to pay attention to these nudges as a facilitator. I am wondering if you need more feedback from us as participants? For example, I for one left the classroom in awe of your inclusiveness for all comments. I think the conversations were different because you allowed what was alive in the group to emerge. Both meetings met the objective which I understood to be an introduction to the platform and each other.

    The other one I heard you mention in both meetings was uncertainty about having grouped the blogs. Again I was grateful that you brought order to that ‘mushrooming’ list. As it is I haven’t figured out who are the most recent registrants because people can add their names anywhere in the list. Maybe it is a good topic for one of your sidebar surveys?

    • @Karen I was having a think about the survey for this week, but not 100% sure what it is you are suggesting for a topic…can you clarify so I can add it to the blog. Thanks

  3. Karen Humber says:

    Something to quantify your question about grouping the blogs, eg. do people prefer to be grouped or not, would they prefer to self-identify their group, be able to change it, or would they prefer other criteria such as geography? Whatever gets at the heart of the uncertainty I heard you express about having created the groupings. Hope that helps.

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