What Should the Future of Dagorhir's Official Facebook Group Be?
What Should the Future of Dagorhir's Official Facebook Group Be?
You, the leaders of Dagorhir chapters, should decide how we want Dagorhir to be represented on this very public face/modern recruiting tool.
Resuming the conversation from last week's RWC, here's a summary of my notes:
1. We learned at Ragnarok that we nearly lost use of Coopers Lake campground because of the dumpster fires on Facebook. Members of the Coopers team monitor such things, and the vitriol, negativity, and unconfirmed rumors posted on Facebook justifiably concerned the Coopers. (Fortunately, we has a remarkably low-drama Rag this year.)
2. Facebook can be a useful, easy-to-access tool for recruiting purposes.
3. Facebook can also be a clumsy tool for sharing critical information, as topics can get buried and it can be hard to locate accurate information among opinion and jokes.
4. Successful organizations don't let people shit-post and create dumpster fires on their official websites and Facebook pages.
5. If we change the rules for our FB group, people are still welcome to post whatever they want on their own pages.
Suggestions which came up at RWC included:
- Running the Dagorhir FB group as a "business FB site."
- Limiting it to an "Official PAGE" (not a group).
- Opening up the Reddit-style Forums on dagorhir.com (already planned) and trying to drive traffic there, so that members can more easily find answers to their questions (without having to dig through jokes and shit-posts).
What are YOUR thoughts on how we, as an organization, leverage Facebook?
Thanks for your time and brainpower!
Graymael/David Vierling, Aratari
I go on FB everyday. I get notifications about my friends and chosen discussions and groups. The settings are way more controlled there to limit what gets automatically sent to me and what doesn't.
I don't often visit other social media platforms or communication sites since FB is linked directly to my phone and connects all of the things that interest me together in one place.
Most businesses and organizations have a FB PAGE. They use it for announcements, advertising, etc. They do not have both an OFFICIAL PAGE and an OFFICAL GROUP.
The members/players of Dagorhir deserve to have a normally moderated FB group to discuss whatever they feel is needed. Whether that's discussing a new form of glue, setting up meetings at events, sharing stories and pictures OR sharing personal struggles they've dealt with in the community and finding others who are then strengthened to come forward about having dealt with the same or similar issues. This is how you get people to talk. This is how you get a feel for patterns and warnings. Yes, reports can be issued to the Arbiter. Reports can be issued to your local chapter admins. But sometimes having the community there for you makes all the difference in whether something of any nature is talked about.
That being said, a community discussion FB group should in no way be considered to be Official. Being named "The Dagorhir Community, An Unofficial Group" or something might help, but taking away our identity as Dagorhir members, of being the community that plays, would be wrong. It should not be linked to the Official Dagorhir FB Page and no member of the DBGA BoD or AWC should be mods or admins. There should be more than one person with actual admin status. Any requests for official answers should ALWAYS be referred to the Official Dagorhir FB Page. Any and all announcements from the DBGA/Aratari or Ragarok could be shared into the group from where they were posted by their own Offical FB Pages.
- As most RWC suggestions came from FAME, we suggest using it as business only.
- No discussion groups officially on FB
- Just use the forums for discussion.
- Take a clue from other organizations such as the SCA. Unofficial groups only.
- Public statements as such
Ragnarok, obviously, has been having many of the same deliberations since the event, and the path we're currently leaning toward is something along these lines (not yet set in stone, so it may change):
1. Create a News page on the website. Any official information or announcement that Ragnarok wishes to release will be provided as an article on that page which can then be linked on FB or other locations. This makes a clear delineation between official and unofficial Ragnarok information (and will hopefully cut down on some of the misinformation that floats around).
1. a. Articles going up on the News page need to have multiple individuals proof-reading, verifying the accuracy of the content and authorizing the post. For Rag, this would be the Business Council and any Section Head the post pertains to.
2. The Dagorhir Ragnarok FB page would become the official FB page for the Ragnarok. Events can be created via that page, and the Dagorhir Ragnarok account would become the official Ragnarok FB communication account. This account would be used to post links to News articles, answer questions about the event, etc.
3. Implement a Social Media Coordinator position under the EC whose job it is to head a team to moderate the official FB page and peruse the various (numerous) Dagorhir-related pages for any Ragnarok questions and forward them to the official page.
These steps will hopefully go a long way toward tackling a lot of those problems.
Facebook is a great tool for connecting communities, and that's exactly what Dagorhir is: a community. As such, it cannot be simply discarded when addressing the future online presence of the organization.
However, we can absolutely turn them more into professional and official information sources than their current usage.
The one thing that has to also be addressed when making any changes is to provide a method for people to still make their complaints. If that's not provided, all it is is censorship. And if you're not letting complaints be aired publicly, complaints need to be addressed and responded to -quickly- so that people don't think their complaints are being ignored if they send them in to the official complaint box (if they lose faith, or don't have any faith in the first place, that their concerns will be addressed and considered, they won't buy in to the system).
Best way for that is probably something along the lines of "if you have any concerns, please contact the DBGA via [email]", and then if complaints come in (or complaints are found circling through the community) to do an official posting addressing it. The tone of the posting is determined by the outcome desired; it could be as simple as a post asking for people with more information to contact the DBGA so they can look deeper into the issue.
Test Post for Mod interference/allowance-
Coming in a bit late, but still relevant.
The main advantage of a Facebook Group is that it allows for individual contributors from the community to share content. If it was limited to just a Facebook Page then it would remove that outlet and only allow comments on a thread created by the page itself or the community tab (which is a bit hidden). I'd probably agree that the Forums are a better outlet to share information, but you can't just extinguish a social media outlet. It will be there regardless of if it's sanctioned by the DBGA, so you might as well have a "highlighted" place for people to go to. I am still confused why it's a "closed" group though.
However, I don't think it's the appropriate place to post complaints and should stay clean so it is a useful resource for what's going on (inside or outside of the DBGA) and not a nuisance to sift through. That boils down to moderator staff, but I don't think there's much alternative otherwise. If you really want to keep it tight though, you could just turn on post approval.
I'd like to point out there is also an unofficial Reddit that has a similar purpose to the Facebook group, although it's not as active. We also have a wide variety of different discussion groups outside the main page with some being cross-game. Here's what I have for a list of direct or tangent groups (intentionally excluding DDMS):
- Performance Arts:
- Buy / Sell / Trade:
Also to touch on the point by Tartarus Invictus about posting an article on a website then sharing the content. That is IMO the best way to go about official communication, hands down. You can also share that wider than just Facebook (e.g. email and twitter).