I was tagged in this tweet this afternoon, and felt it was so wonderful I should share it here:
— David Porter (@dendroglyph) November 21, 2015
I must say that not all the virtually connecting sessions have great rapport or magic sauce, but we are getting a whole lot better at it. I remain impressed at the quality of the dialogue that is being generated around virtually connecting sessions. At Educause, we saw that people onsite were having conversations because of virtually connecting. Not conversations about virtually connecting. Given the large size of the conference, Virtually Connecting became a reason to be in the same room at the same time.
This week has involved a cast of 1000s to support the hangouts at OpenEd. We have grown so quickly, but also, our processes have matured. I found myself a little nervous, and perhaps a little the impostor when I volunteered to be a virtual buddy for Mia Zamora at National Writing Project Annual Meeting. I met Mia virtually in the early days of Virtually Connecting when we did a session at the HASTAC conference. Mia has been a huge supporter of Virtually Connecting, and was one of the first people to help us expand this idea beyond Maha and Rebecca.
In the background of all the OpenEd stuff, I had the pleasure of hosting a hangout with Mia Zamora, Anna Smith, Darshna Katwala, Terry Elliot, and myself (Rebecca J. Hogue). We talked about writing, and how the national writing project was looking at writing from so many different angles. We thought the conversation would be short, but we ended up running for a full hour. There was lots of engagement from those onsite but also those of us joining online. We felt like we were in the room having a chat. Just another example of what kind of magic can happen when you bring interesting people together to talk about a shared passion.