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Dave Cline of Virginia, Alaska, Colorado, California, Utah and Oregon

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Transitory Yahoo Groups

I belong to a couple of useful yahoo groups.

They work. And not because theu are microscopically focused. But because they consists of a special kind of people. A set of people who respect the inboxes of others. A set of people who only share what's "basically" relevant. But a group of people who are tolerant to off-topic discussion.

As I said I belong to a couple of groups like this. These groups are not narrow subject groups - but only groups of like minded people. Who have learned to respect each other despite the fact that they've never met. Who seem to learn what is content is right or wrong over time.

It's these groups I value above all others. Why? Because they are more like communities, like true village mentalities than the other antiseptically clean, sterile groups.

So I value these small, comfortable, intimate groups much more than any others.

But, and this is my thought for the day, the creation of severly on-topic groups may be something else entirely. They're not treated like this but I think they could be.

Surgical groups are like pure focus groups brought together for a "short duration" to achieve a group understanding in a particular subject. Why not create a group that is dedicated to the discussion of say, how the H5N1 can transmutate into a more virulent form of the avian flu. The key here is "short duration".

These groups should not be left to linger on and on, gathering digital dust. Left to languish until their purpose is lost. Why not set a time limit on a focus group type group? Give a group like "Cheny_one_shot_McDraw" a 2 month time limit. Invite a bunch of people with the notion that, this is not a permanent group. It WILL go away and you won't have to manage it ever again. But let's get together at the virtual coffeehouse and really hash this subject out. Let's ALL get our opinions out about it and then go on to something else.

What I'm saying is most of these groups should be transitory. While some of these groups, like the ones I value most, should be permanent virtual enclaves from which to venture out.

Thanks for reading,
Dave Cline

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