Thursday, July 19, 2012

Inquire, Paraphrase, Acknowledge, Advocate

So I was reading through the information streams created around this years OSCON. And it looks to be an outstanding event... focused on the impact the open movement has had at many levels and in many realms. All good! I am so happy to be a part of it and grateful to be a part of the Open Badges initiative with Mozilla Foundation. A lot of my current activity is with building community in and around the implementation of the Open Badges Infrastructure (OBI). So what really resonated with me are the four traits for a good community as lifted by Tim O'Reilly from David Eaves keynote. The four traits are; Inquire, Paraphrase, Acknowledge, Advocate. But what does all this mean to community building? So I looked up each and what could each community member do to assist in building a strong sustainable and healthy community.

  • Inquire - To seek information by asking a question; curious; probing.
    Always be asking questions and seek information to understand each community member and their positions and context.

  • Paraphrase - A restatement of a text or passage in another form or other words, often to clarify meaning; clearness; rewording.
    Confirm that you have understood, add strength to another community members words by showing your understanding as it related to a particular issue within the community. Even restate within a different context as it relates to the community.

  • Acknowledge - to show or express appreciation or gratitude for. to acknowledge a favor. To express thanks or gratitude for. To admit the existence, reality, or truth of.
    Let people know they are welcome in the community by acknowledging their contribution, engagement and presence. Confirm their contributions by tying them back to current and emerging truths within the community and its shared knowledge.

  • Advocate - to support or recommend publicly; plead for or speak in favour of. to speak or write in favor of; support or urge by argument; recommend publicly.
    Speak out for all the good work the community is doing. Choose the topics of interest to you, within the community, and speak passionately of them. Assist in keeping all things moving forward; network, engage, understand, promote, and share. Be positive... advocate.