Back to Inclusive Social Media
This is a page where we are tracking topics on E-Democracy.org hosted Issues Forums at the community and neighborhood level that are particularly notable. Of special interest are those topics showing deeper engagement and inclusion of diverse voices and subjects as well as those influencing the media and elected officials.
Our strategic goal in embracing broader "community life" themes is to increase the size of the audience involved in such discussions. In short, being open to "who can recommend a good plumber" or "free stuff on the corner" makes these more civic and issue-based exchanges all the more powerful and accessible even if as a percentage of topics total exchanges, the examples below are not repeated every week on every forum.
This is a work in progress. An oral version of some of these stories are included in this webinar.
- General media coverage of inclusion forum work - great examples
- Standish Ericsson "Community Life" Neighbors Forum:
- Click Latest Topics to go in a bit. Lots of neighborly exchange.
- Over 500 members reaching 10% of households everyday.
- St. Paul Greater Frogtown Neigbors
- "Little Mekong":
- Media: http://www.tcdailyplanet.net/news/2010/04/12/rebranding-frogtown-st-paul
- Topic: http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/stpaul-frogtown/messages/topic/2I70jX7LSbjr7LKUnbPvj3
- Blog Lessons: The outreach person's approach: http://blog.e-democracy.org/posts/769
- Helping the national media discover stories about this highly Southeast Asian and African American neighborhood: http://forums.e-democracy.org/r/topic/4mNTBJuPF2ZDvT9aTWr04W
- Sharing advice on kids playing in empty lot and causing trouble (see post #4 down): http://forums.e-democracy.org/r/topic/3fdw4vRjRxLdWAnm9hQ2G3
- Cedar Riverside - Large East African population, low income area:
- Some interesting posts:
- Somali/Nhood Connection - http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/mpls-cr/messages/topic/40HT49ToMOfH0l3Mfd3GqU
- Police incident - http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/mpls-cr/messages/topic/22Atclu18rqBNvlwNp2zh2
- East African Accent - Cam Gordon is Green City Council Member- http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/mpls-cr/messages/topic/6B8zK0BNuJE7JHcJEpSoDi
- Triple Homicide at Somali Grocery- http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/mpls-cr/messages/topic/3yMFbF80Bn57kfIaPtQqL
- Shootings happened next door in Seward (mostly middle class homeowners on that all volunteer-based e-forum - which is the norm where no outreach resources exist) and a call on the forum for a candle vigil the next day led to this: http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/mpls-seward/messages/topic/5q4ND03X5mYSX6rQRwqVfp
- Blogged on the partner community news blog: http://sewardprofile.posterous.com/tag/sewardmarket?page=2
- Push for a marked cross-walk to aide elder immigrants in particular: http://forums.e-democracy.org/r/topic/InW3Nde6m12aS24URZxPR
- Sharing information for Somali parents to use to keep their children from joining Al-Shabab (a wing of Al-qaeda) after 20+ young adults disappeared primarily from the neighborhood last year (yeah, serious stuff):
- Note how Abdirizar Bihi uses the forum: http://forums.e-democracy.org/p/abdirizarbihi
- Note that each forum has a basic member directory: http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/mpls-cr/memberdirectory
- Powderhorn Park - A very dynamic nhood forum
- Recent exchange by some giving up on living in the nhood: http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/mpls-poho/messages/topic/2o9qsFjaJGQMerNYXNHeU2
- Read the sixth post: http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/mpls-poho/messages/topic/Q42QFJXVTTGaHC6HK7NsA
- Note reply from Councilmember Glidden: http://forums.e-democracy.org/r/post/5D4JNJmxIHRnVqD26Z0rcz
- Response to shooting - http://forums.e-democracy.org/r/topic/7BtSTI4aIwdFItlK3UwAoQ
- "20 gun shots" - http://forums.e-democracy.org/r/topic/7pyG2NAh4sHBLwukhoZP3e
- "what to do" - http://forums.e-democracy.org/r/topic/5AxGKcFjyvBQkp8A38L9GC
- Responding to missing child alert
- Cass Lake Leech Lake - Rural majority Native American Area
- More examples from our previous "rural" community outreach efforts are documented here: http://blog.e-democracy.org/posts/812
Community Organizer Use
Government and Elected Official Participation =
- Government participation -
- In terms of "e-participation" with government the key to our citizen-based model is that once you get the people organized that government will come to you: http://blog.e-democracy.org/posts/224
- Adding list of links to posts from local elected officials and staff - Because most participants fall within an elected officials district, we experience solid "constituent service" engagement on many forums.
... rough draft ...
The lessons and the like are documented here: http://blog.e-democracy.org/posts/category/local/new-efforts
The best way to get a sense of the "life" is to look deeply at a few key forums (I've dug out some nuggets for you.) Our users normally start with specific forums and once subscribed, rarely visit the web site home - http://forums.e-democracy.org/ - because e-mail is the default for publishing.
The one advantage of online news commenting/blogs is the relatively ease for "outsiders" to quickly scan for action. In the two-way forum model, the built up social connections are hard to "see" and new topics may have unlinked context from weeks back.
You can quickly scan the latest 100 topics (many with multiple posts) across the 25+ forums: http://forums.e-democracy.org/s/index.html?s=&g=&a=&t=1&p=0&f=0&r=0&i=1&l=100 (We've had over 100 posts in the last 24 hours across the network. All signed using real names.)
Here you will see a real-time mix of posts from our hyper-active Minneapolis forum, the US forum (our release value ... not very civil compared our local spaces but better than online news commenting), a small town rural forum, and some posts from our online working groups and the like.
You can get a sense of the size of forums - the ones under 100 are in start-up mode: http://forums.e-democracy.org/groups/