Darren’s Day 3 task is to join forums (read Darren’s post on why you should participate in forums). His rationale is this builds relationships with people who have interests similar to you, builds profile of your blog, increases knowledge gain and increases readership of your blog.
I already participate in forums – and would suggest that, with the way the Internet is evolving that you also get involved with online communities.
For me, participating in forums and online communities is not about increasing the number of people who read my blog or visit my web sites – sure it would be nice – but about building relationships with people and increasing my knowledge. This is so much more valuable.
Here are some of the communities I am involved with:
- EDNA 2007 E-learning Networks Community Forum – each month they have discussions and live online sessions on different topics relating to e-learning and web 2.0
- Twitter – can not say enough about twitter. It is an amazing community – you share information with each other, and people quickly come to each others with the answers (e.g. I asked for an example of a teacher using Flickr with students and Darren (USA) quickly came back with a link for me)
- EduBloggerWorld – this is a new community for Educational Bloggers – through this community I have linked up with others working with mobile learning
- Facebook – some people I network with are more likely to respond if I contact them from within Facebook
- If you freely and willingly help others they will do the same for you
- Make the time to participate, networking with global friends is valuable – value the networks you form and thank them when they do help you (thanks Michelle for introducing us to this 31 Days to Build a Better Blog and Darren we are glad you liked the Sweet Twist to your Blogging Project)
- Don’t engage with negative posts in forums (i.e. the posts that aren’t particularly nice). Ignore them! These types of posts tend to disrupts good conversation. For advice on interacting in online communities I strongly recommend you read Sean’s Community Group Therapy Blog. I have learnt so much from Sean’s posts.