One of the dangers of asking people’s opinion before you make a decision is there is an expectation that you’ll take those opinions into account. A while ago I asked you whether you would lose all respect for me if I created a Facebook group for the NosillaCastaways. We got a ton of comments over on podfeet.com and I really appreciate the feedback. Opinions I heard included:
- Over my dead body will I get a Facebook account (and no, it isn’t just Bart who feels that way)
- I joined Google+ just so I could play in communities but I often forget to go there (several people said this)
- Bart suggested the danger that if I divide the community in two by having Facebook and G+, we would be left with less than half a community. Others expressed the same concern.
- It was suggested by a few that having a dedicated platform that wasn’t on any of these services would be the right way to go
- Some people were worried that having both communities would be too much work for me
- There were many people suggesting that resistance is not futile and that I should look to Locutus for inspiration
I’m really happy that so many people helped me noodle this. I’ll give you my thoughts in no particular order.
Less than half a community
You know I love G+ and that our community there is strong and active and fun. However the fear of less than half a community is unfounded. What we have now is far less than half a community. Here’s some math. There are 7.4 billion people on the planet. There are 3.3 billion people in the world with Internet access. Of those 3.3 billion people, 1.6 billon are active on Facebook every single month. That means nearly half of all Internet users are actively looking at Facebook.
Now let’s look at Google+. This one is harder to find accurate statistics because while Google posts how many people have accounts (2.5 billion), they won’t tell you how many actually use G+. Estimates in the Tech Times put the active number at around 250 million. I’m not saying the G+ users aren’t important to me and that I would stop playing in G+. but it seems to me that I’m not serving the other 98.5% of the NosillaCastaway audience by not giving people a place to play in Facebook.
More Work for Me
To address the more work for Allison part, I don’t think it will be more work. Every time I post an article or a podcast episode, I post to the G+ community, to my Podfeet Twitter account, to a NosillaCast Twitter account, to LinkedIn, to my personal Facebook account and to a Facebook Page. My plan is to eliminate the NosillaCastaways Facebook page because it doesn’t let people really interact with each other. Instead I can post to the new NosillaCastaways Group in Facebook and simply hit Share from there to share to my own timeline for folks who know me in real life but might not want to join the community.
My hope is that like the G+ community, people in the Facebook group will post questions and get answers from each other and it won’t take too much work from me.
What would be more work for me would be a dedicated platform. I ran a BBPress forum a long time ago and it was horrible. It was riddled with spam so it took a ton of effort to keep it even usable. Even with all that work, it wasn’t a good solution because I was forcing people to leave where they already are to go seek out this new tool. If people are in Facebook all day, then they have to do very little effort to jump into the group to chat with folks who like the same stuff they like. Making them leave to go to a forum won’t work any better than making them leave to go over to G+.
The Facebook Group is Live
I’m sure you can already tell that I made the difficult decision to go ahead and create the Facebook group. I promise for as long as you guys are active in G+ I won’t abandon you. Many people wrote in their comments that they don’t participate in the G+ community very often but that I should keep doing it. Well that’s not fair, is it? If you want it to be alive and vibrant, participate! Go answer questions, post cool tech gadgets you like, ask questions when you get stuck.
So with all that preamble, please head on over to Facebook and do a search for NosillaCastaways and join our group. You can also go to podfeet.com/facebook and it will take you straight to the NosillaCastaways group. It is a completely public group with no restrictions on joining but for some dumb reason it requires Steve or me as admins to tap the approve button after you request to join.
Don’t judge me, ok? Let’s all have fun wherever we meet up,