|Poll: Do PCN forums have a future?
Total Votes: 4
|YES: I already participate in current public forums||
|YES: I would like to partipate in a public forums||
|YES: BUT I would prefer to use private forums||
|YES: BUT I do not wish to particate in forums||
|YES: BUT I require support & training||
|NO: I do NOT believe forums have a future||
Use It OR Lose It?
In Ancient Roman cities the forum was the main square used as a marketplace for civic and business purposes. Not much has changed; our towns and villages often still revolve around a central hub.
Think of your own community, where is the hub or the modern equivalent of the Roman forum? Why do you go there, who do you meet, what do you do?
Many of us will have similar answers; to meet a friend, to buy something or ask for help. The community hub or forum is also where public things happen; it could include parades or demonstrations. We all intuitively judge the vitality of a community by evidence of life in the public square or forum.
Life online is not so different. Think about our own online forum; it’s our public space. Do you feel comfortable there? Is much going on? Could you meet a friend, ask for help or look for information?
Towns employ people to keep the public spaces tidy and attractive but it is up to the citizens to use them. Online public spaces such as forums often have an editor or moderator to perform a similar role. It is up to the ‘netizens’ to make use of these online public spaces.
The PCN forum is under review. Why? In spite of careful maintainence by our administrative staff, we haven’t made much use of it. Does that matter? Surely, we don’t use it because there’s no need for it?
Perhaps, but let’s think about it.
Our website and forum represent us on the internet. They present an increasingly important window for the world outside PCN. Thanks to the efforts of our editor, our website is exemplary. However, he cannot create a community on our behalf. If we don’t participate with posts and comments, our forum lies silent and forlorn. Until recently, you could almost feel the tumbleweed blowing along.
So what’s to do? Pull the plug and remove our opportunity to support and share? Can we do any better than that? Why not dust off our protest placards and meet in our square. Share our concerns, ask for help and give our support to those in need. Let our forum reflect the vitality that flourishes in our local groups.
If life grows in the forum, we will also begin to support those who are unable to join a local group. Our sense of community will grow and those outside PCN will notice. The life and vigour of the forum will attract new members. People will realise that the PCN forum may offer a path to a spiritual home. If they meet others on the forum who live nearby, they may go on to form a new local group.
So, use it or lose it? What will we do?
For my part, I joined PCN because it has a forum. There isn’t a local group in my town. If I can meet others through the forum, we could try to launch a new local group. Others could try the same. As someone might once have said, ‘Friends and members of PCN unite, you have only your forum to lose!’
EDIT: Our forum viewing statistics indicate considerable interest in this and other forum topics.
Please complete the online poll or leave a comment below to register your view.
P.S My apologies for any typos; I am still learning to use the system!