We heard from a super-techie the other day. He was frustrated that his hometown, South Burlington, is covered by 20 FPF neighborhood forums… too many small groups he thought. Also, he wanted more bells and whistles… catchy pseudonyms for users, avatars, a rating system for postings, etc.
Well, that’s all understandable. And we recognize that we can’t please everyone all the time. What we do work on everyday, though, is fulfilling our mission in our pilot service region… to help nearby neighbors connect and build community.
So in South Burlington we host 20 neighborhood forums. On average, each one covers an area encompassing about 350 households, with 100 subscribing in each neighborhood forum so far. We hear wonderful comments all the time from South Burlington FPF users. Here’s one we got earlier today…
Last week I was at an educational session for reaching personal goals, offered at the South Burlington Library. The class was filled to capacity (with more on a waiting list) and everyone in the group (approximate age range 15 to 70) said they heard about it via the library’s announcement on the various South Burlington FPF. Keep up the good work. -Joanne Heidkamp, MS, RD
Any resident of the 25 Vermont towns in our pilot area (Chittenden and Grand Isle Counties, plus Starksboro) can put Front Porch Forum to use too. Sign up, then post. Then ask your local network to do the same… each person in his/her own FPF neighborhood forum.
In a way, FPF has passed out small neighborhood-size soapboxes to 17,000 (and counting) Vermonters… anyone may reach dozens or hundreds of nearby neighbors through FPF. Some Web 2.0 gurus who know how to manipulate mega social media (Facebook, etc.) may grow frustrated that they can’t somehow use FPF to build a huge soapbox for themselves. So be it.