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Saturday, February 07, 2009
Upcoming: PFHyper presents New Times New Tech
I will be presenting at the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits 2009 Nonprofit Tech & Communications Conference (New Times New Tech) on Friday, Feb. 20, 2009.

The title of my session is Using the Collaborative Internet for Engaging the Public in Policy & Planning and it will run from 10:30 to 11:45.

Here's the description:
Join your peers to share Web and social media strategies and techniques for involving members of groups, teams, organizations, and various stakeholders, including the public at large, in problem definition, policy or plan formulation, decision making, and implementation. Various tools will be considered for their usefulness in citizen engagement including blogs, wikis, Twitter, Facebook, Google and other social media and collaborative tools. This is not a primer but a group discussion about what's working for you today, what's working for your colleagues, and what you see in the future. Join this discussion to share and discover potential tools to try out, and gain a better understanding of the networked public sphere.
How the hell do we use all these wonderful tools to get our work done in terms of working with our internal groups and engaging stakeholders outside of our organizations? As noted, this will be a group discussion and I hope to learn more than any of you about how you have been using the web and internet in these processes. Is Facebook the answer? Should we just give up on the fancy tools and use email with all its spam and management difficulties? Or should we just drop email and Facebook and move everyone over to Twitter (or Friendfeed or Plaxo or NextGreatThing)?

What I want to find out from you is what's working. Where do you feel that you have some quantifiable success in enhancing your group work process with a collaborative tool. Or at least some glimmer of hope that we are all on the right path. Share with us whatever smart and promising practices that help with group process. Let's hear your stories as to what's working and what's not working and some dashes of humor as we go along would be lovely.

I told a friend about this workshop and she immediately jumped to the concept of lobbying and attempting to influence legislators. While lobbying will likely be part of any policy implementation plan, I want this workshop to look at how we can work as a team over the net to start right at the problem defining itself and move through planning, decision-making, and implementing.

I also want to talk about controlling messages and collaboration. Can you open up social media in your organization and trust everyone to act responsibly? Will social collaboration be successful if you try to control all signals or does that rub too much against the grain of the social media concept itself? Can you just let everyone Twitter and Facebook and hope for the best?

So I am hoping you will want to join me on February 20 at 10:30 and that we will all have a lively, friendly, and respectful discussion. I'd love to see comments here at the blog on your ideas for shaping the presentation! Whether you get to my show or not, stop me and introduce yourself if you see me wandering the halls.

My first draft of slides is up at Google docs. Although the first screen makes you think you must log-in, look center and down for the direct link to the slides with no authentication.

My slides from last year's presentation are at Slideshare.

MCN is also twittering conference information as @SmartNonprofits.

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