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March 2009

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Ian Delaney

I think your words of warning are wise and important, but a period of inexpensive experimentation and flirtation with some of these tools doesn't really do any harm and might actually do a lot to help reveal what the real needs, problems and advantages are. I didn't mention it on Monday, but I think Ning might have been a better place to start than Facebook. Still - let's wait and see.

Nico Macdonald

In response to Ian's comment: I agree that experiementation can't do any harm. However, one needs to be clear about what one wants to achieve if one is to use one's time effectively. One also needs to think aout the scenarios in which, in this case, RSA Fellows of all ages, interests and technical dispositions might use these tools.

David Wilcox

Nico - I see the Open RSA Facebook group as a quick way to get some interested - and of course interesting - people communicating and getting to know each other. Once we have more of a sense of who we are we really do need to focus, as you say, on what we might jointly or severally want to do. I tend to jump to tools and action .... I'm reminding myself relationships before ideas, ideas before action. I hope you will keep pushing on this.

Jeremy Jacobs

I get the impression that the RSA is very PC and too liberal/left

Nico Macdonald

In response to David Wilcox, I note that the Facebook experiment to date has not been a notable success, and it is hard to point to any achievements. My impression is of many people trying to start diverse conversations without much response (though the RSA Website - What do Fellows want? topic has had valuable responses). This may be a function of the Facebook model, or a function of the lack of thinking about effective communication and communication design. Or it may be a result of the lack of clear objectives to cohere and guide debate and action. For me, I am interested in informed debate, and there is certainly no more of that. (And to Jeremy Jacobs: the RSA has a fairly fixed view, but I wouldn't describe it as liberal/left as today those terms lack meaning.) And for now I still hold a watching brief.

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