Podcast Audio | Posted by Phil Leigh on April 30, 2008
If you would like to learn about the differences between blogs and forums in the future, this interview is for you.
Subject: Our guest today is Patrick O’Keefe who is the author of Managing Online Forums which has just been released by the publishing arm of the American Management Association.
A blog is like a lecture class with one or more lecturers. Students (the audience) are invited to make comments and ask questions germane to the lecture topic.
By comparison, an online forum is much like a large conference room with a round table of discussion participants. Each room is devoted to a given topic. Any member of the round table may initiate a conversational thread and others are invited to pick-up on it. Simultaneously, the remaining members of the round table may start separate threads. It’s kind-of a peer-to-peer situation that requires active management to keep the background noise to an acceptable level.
Forums are particularly useful for users of computer services and software. They provide a place where users can help one-another with problems without having to involve the vendor directly. They are like virtual user group conventions, only archived.
Phil’s Take. Perhaps someday we will enter a website like Amazon.com where we activate an avatar to browse books of interest. We will be able to strike-up conversations with nearby avatars representing people with similar interests. We might exchange book recommendations, or engage in lively conversations about the books we have read. We make new friends while simultaneously enriching our knowledge.
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Too many press releases are worthless because they are full of technical jargon. Yet most of us can explain our products if we can just speak to our audience for a couple of minutes, particularly if we can include a life-like demo.
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