'Big Picture' stuff

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'Big Picture' stuff

Post  TLB on Thu Jul 14, 2011 11:59 am

SG and I have spoken in recent weeks and months about what we can do with the site and what direction we wish to go. There was the MPC thread (and the rolled out version that went thru staff and SUPPORT related to site direction, ownership, and somethingelseiforgetrightnow).

As for direction, I think we were pretty clear in wanting to drive better service for two main avenues - member info and research. Some for info to you guys, some to see where you can suggest improvements or help 'get shit done'.

Member info

  • Wiki - InfiniteJest/Simon has PM'd me with plans on how to flesh it in. I'd like to get forum specific support to fill in related areas (like TR giving an overhaul to a wiki page on trip sitting, dangers and precautions, etc) rather than the wiki forum sitting on it's own. My vision was for a master be-all reference linked from across the site, which he's continuing to build. Next is how to get this more used by the site and the rest of the world, akin to imdb for movies or google for web searches. Help on 'how to market this' is much wanted.

  • Crisis support - TDS has tried at times, and I think there are emergency contact links perhaps in AUSDD and-or EADD. I'm not sure how feasible it is, but similar to wiki, I'd like one up-to-date reference we can shunt people to rather than carry this ourselves. An extension of this is to build rapport with such entities so they can coach us up a bit, and hopefully get a presence on the site that is directly helping members.

  • Drug Studies - we've been doing header links for general research projects, and banners for sponsored efforts. This may be the way to continue, but I'd like to get public feedback on trying to target research that can help members more....so far, I think we've been targetting things that help researchers and members can contribute, but I'd like to see us also finding things that help the members more directly.


Research (and 'Brand Management' aka 'Get our Name Out There')
Actually, this is the meat of what I wanted to share, what research or publication opportunities we have upcoming. Informing you lets you see what's coming and help us best prepare for how to handle it.

  • Drug Studies - the only real horse power there has been Tronica. From her view, the number of researchers is growing, but we need to actively manage the relationships (push for a return on findings, see if we can get our name listed in references, and see where funding opportunities might be lying in wait for us). Nuke is an 'also ran' mod, but I don't have grounds to remove her. Ideally, I'd like to see Tronica moved to a lead position with a 1-3 supporting mods willing to work that area (emails with researchers, thread editing and updating, etc). Tronica has a good system in place, and this is her career type work essentially, so she's key - but she needs help, IMO.

  • Inflexxion Survey - we contracted with them to do quarterly surveys and get paid quarterly. Shortly after SG and I signed the contract, they called and preferred to do one big survey at the end of the year. I have to follow up on getting paid, but the door is open for us to have an active hand in the survey, and results. I'd like to split out the 'Inflexxion Survey 2011' to a separate thread. The heart of it is essentially a census on our membership to assess A LOT of things that would be of use to the research community (ages, geography, etc). This presents an assessment for them on what they can use BL for in terms of a candidate base. They intend to publish this, which gives us a giant billboard of ANY researcher knowing what we can offer them (= awesomeness for us!). They plan on coming back in late AUG or SEPT to hash out the actual survey questions - get our feedback on what they were planning to ask, see what all we want to include. That will conclude our contract with them, and should leave us financially covered for 2011 and a good part of 2012. We'll negotiate more with them following that, but this will lay a cornerstone for what they can or want to do with us going forward, and what we can offer to other such researchers (and get us more funding). Like I said, this needs it's own thread.

  • EGA Conference (Entheogenesis Australis) DEC 2-5 in Victoria, AUS - Both hoptis and Tronica have expressed keen desire to register and represent BL at this major symposium. This has the support of SG and myself, but we need to work out the details of why we're there and what we're trying to accomplish. Defining how we interact and represent professionally should probably also spin out as it's own thread. For now, I'm putting this on the radar that this is a desired activity, we need to refine our approach to it. In an ideal situation, we've got enough funding for the site to pay people's registration and expenses for this, and we've got a core team hand picked (trusted) to pull it off. SG and I would like to see the site move in that direction.

  • MAPS 25th Anniversary Conference ~DEC in San Francisco, CA - There is a conference planned for MAPS to celebrate their 25 yrs of work, and Rick Doblin has reached out to us and erowid to see if we'd like to take one of the days for our purposes. Conversations between SG and I concluded there's no way we can turn down this opportunity; and we expect erowid will be on for it as well. There's a lot to figure out for this, such as SG's exam schedule and my work situation for getting time to go out there...and of course 'wtf do we want to present?'. We can get into it more in coming weeks and flesh in the meat, but for now, we want to verify our personal situations and give Rick a 'Hell Yes' once we're sure.


I'm expecting our site will see the annual wave of increased traffic as many students head back to school during AUG-SEP, so we need the upgrade to be stable and prepared for that. You can see from the last few things, we'll be getting our name in publications (Inflexxion study, articles about MAPS, recognition at EGA, etc). Come the turn of the year, I expect us to see massive increases in traffic and we need to be prepared to handle that with our server and software infrastructure, our 'new and improved' public presentation of the site (the look, the content, etc), and the professionalism from staff at all levels.


Any objections to taking this thread over to the smod level? I'd like to have all sr. staff aware and on board - more eyes, ears, and hands can only help. And keeping them in the loop also takes staff trust (and expectations of one another) up another notch. I'll plan to move this down by Sunday barring objections.

TLB

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Re: 'Big Picture' stuff

Post  dokomo on Thu Jul 14, 2011 2:40 pm

TLB wrote:SG and I have spoken in recent weeks and months about what we can do with the site and what direction we wish to go. There was the MPC thread (and the rolled out version that went thru staff and SUPPORT related to site direction, ownership, and somethingelseiforgetrightnow).

As for direction, I think we were pretty clear in wanting to drive better service for two main avenues - member info and research. Some for info to you guys, some to see where you can suggest improvements or help 'get shit done'.

Member info
[list]
[*] Wiki - InfiniteJest/Simon has PM'd me with plans on how to flesh it in. I'd like to get forum specific support to fill in related areas (like TR giving an overhaul to a wiki page on trip sitting, dangers and precautions, etc) rather than the wiki forum sitting on it's own. My vision was for a master be-all reference linked from across the site, which he's continuing to build. Next is how to get this more used by the site and the rest of the world, akin to imdb for movies or google for web searches. Help on 'how to market this' is much wanted.

I could definitely see wiki becoming a fantastic repository for this type of material. In Other Drugs we have a thread called the Other Drugs Directory that contains many How-to, FAQ, an Harm reduction based guides that are applicable across the site (not just in OD.) I'm sure similar situations exist in other segments of the forum and I think consolidating and improving them within the wiki would be a fantastic step forward. [/quote]

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Re: 'Big Picture' stuff

Post  hoptis on Tue Jul 19, 2011 6:07 pm

TLB wrote:[*] EGA Conference (Entheogenesis Australis) DEC 2-5 in Victoria, AUS - Both hoptis and Tronica have expressed keen desire to register and represent BL at this major symposium. This has the support of SG and myself, but we need to work out the details of why we're there and what we're trying to accomplish. Defining how we interact and represent professionally should probably also spin out as it's own thread. For now, I'm putting this on the radar that this is a desired activity, we need to refine our approach to it. In an ideal situation, we've got enough funding for the site to pay people's registration and expenses for this, and we've got a core team hand picked (trusted) to pull it off. SG and I would like to see the site move in that direction.

Speakers won't have to pay for registration. Having dinner with Monica on Saturday night to see if we can find something to talk on for an hour... I'll probably just tell candid and untrue but highly amusing stories about all of you. Wink

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Re: 'Big Picture' stuff

Post  n3ophy7e on Thu Jul 21, 2011 4:35 am

hoptis wrote:I'll probably just tell candid and untrue but highly amusing stories about all of you. Wink
Which we will all emphatically deny later on Smile

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Re: 'Big Picture' stuff

Post  TLB on Thu Jul 21, 2011 8:57 am

Had a long call with SG yesterday, and would like to arrange a convo with SG-TLB-Hoptis-Tronica to discuss what to present at EGA, which can be a start for what SG and I could present at MAPS in December. Expect an email shortly Wink

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Re: 'Big Picture' stuff

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