NOTE: This is a semi-blatant plug of Tangler who I work for. But it’s still true.
Blogging is great. I love it. I’m doing it right now.
It’s me having a thought or theory and putting it down on paper for the world to see. You take your time, collect your thoughts (sometimes) and you PUBLISH it. It’s done. It’s finished.
Then there is blog commenting, where the world gets to tell you what they thought of your thoughts. “Nice.” “LOL”. “You suck”.
But it’s a conference. It has it’s place, but it’s dated. At conferences, one guy gets up since he knows it all and tells the 1,000 people who paid to see him what he wants to say (usually not much). He prepares it, puts it up on the screen and tells his story.
When he’s done he opens it up for questions. Audience members get to stand near the mic and ask occasionally insightful questions.*
Barcamps, or open-event conferences like it, are different. There is no one speaker, no schedule and really, no audience. We are all in this together. Anyone can choose the topic, anyone can respond at any time and if you don’t like what you see, then switch channels (walk to a talk) – or better still, go start your own talk on something you’re passionate about.
That what forums are like too. No centre. No boss. No schedule. Just a loose connection of people with something in common and the desire to connect on it. Anyone can create a topic. Anyone can set the tone. And the community decides what’s important and what’s not.
So, the great thing is that Tangler let’s you create a forum in about a minute. So for your many sites, blogs and groups, create a forum today and get your crowd talking to each other. They can throw video into the discussion, link off, have all your discussions in one place and it’s fun.
* Boy I hate it when people get up to the mic just to make statements to show that they are smart too, although this is evidence that open-events are what everyone craves.