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Dead community?

tb
tb's picture
Joined: 12/09/2008

So we are fast approaching a year since the last podcast and almost no action in the forums. Is this a dead community?

G&G Moderator
G&G Podcast Host
NonProfit's picture
Joined: 06/06/2007
G&G

Hey Tom, that's a good question. I know the hosts each have a fond affection for the community and the existing resources contained in the shows and forums. Unfortunately, I don't see the podcast returning. The time it takes to research and record is significant. As the recording stopped, activity in the forums naturally waned.

I'd like to create a straw poll and ask you Tom, and any others who care to weigh in, what is your desire for G&G?

Thanks!

-NP

tb
tb's picture
Joined: 12/09/2008
growing resource

i would like to see this be a growing resource. i've been hanging around G&G for years now and i do get some great value out of it...not just from a church web development standpoint, but from development in general. even more so now that i converted to Drupalism.

i think it would be great to revive this forum. because i have yet to find a forum that was as good as this one was when it was active. (back in MY day....)

G&G Moderator
G&G Podcast Host
NonProfit's picture
Joined: 06/06/2007
I agree

Tom, I agree. (And thanks for this post!)

It's a difficult thing. Cultivating a community, no matter if it's physical or virtual, is something that takes time and dedication. I believe these forums contain a lot of valuable information. This site did wonders to help me over the Drupal learning curve.

I just checked the analytics and in the last month there have been 10,159 unique visitors with 9.95% returning. Traffic is down, but I just scanned the logs and see many long-time members checking in from time-to-time but activity has been way down for some time.

It really all boils down to content. If it's compelling, people will contribute to it. I'm open to any of your ideas as to how to best facilitate that.

Joined: 08/17/2007
A phoenix of G&G?

A challenge for every community, whether online or offline, is sustainability. I have participated in several different communities of Christian web masters and watched them all dwindle away. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) had a forum, Christian Web Masters (which was merged into Geeks & God) was a great resource for many of us, Godbit served others, Heal Your Church Website - still others, etc.

I believe it was in one of the G&G podcasts were Matt and Rob talked about where to be online - build in the middle of the desert or in the village square? Maybe it's time to try bridging with other online communities. Use Facebook comments or Discus instead of having everything here. I'm considering that for my own sites. Tomorrow it may change, but what about today?

One of the challenges with these forums is the lack of notifications on new posts. I use Google Reader (looking for an alternative) to watch for posts, but having to set up an external monitor for forum posts just doesn't excite me. Other forum systems allow me to subscribe to a thread or an entire forum. With the number of spam posts here, it might be worthwhile to investigate other platforms. Or, is there something that can be done with newer versions of Drupal?

Considering other alternatives - how about broadening the contributor base, like at Church Marketing Sucks (http://www.churchmarketingsucks.com/) or Our Church (http://www.ourchurch.com/)? Multiple bloggers can contribute varying view points and case studies or pose questions.

Ultimately, in order for G&G to continue, the 'about' needs to be revisited (http://geeksandgod.com/about). How will it differ from other 'geek' forums, like StackOverflow, or Facebook, or Twitter, or ...?

Let's put it another way - if G&G were your client (church or non-profit or other business), what would you advise them to do?

Now, what do I do to let me know if someone replies to this... hmmm.

~Peace

tb
tb's picture
Joined: 12/09/2008
facebook trap

Steve,

I understand what you are saying. But the follow-the-trend-to-facebook path has not gone well for any other forums I followed. It mostly just became a path to an easier blog for the site owner and a place for followers to comment. The concept of forums doesn't seem to hold in facebook.

Not to mention, I cringe everytime i have to deal with facebook...

tb

Joined: 02/27/2007
I miss the activity here. It

I miss the activity here. It used to be the go-to place for all my church tech questions. If we're not going to find a way to resurrect this, we need to relocate to a new place.