Reflections from my first serious online event

BuildingabstractToday I got rid of 400 or so folders, organised a GIG of files and proceeded one more step along the road to having my files sorted, which at the moment are over 40 GIG, down from 100.  I discovered an old report I wrote on my first serious online workshop, written in week 2-3 of the 6 weeks.  Quotes/extracts follow and with some reflections in Green.

A report and some reflections (about 6 years ago)

I had two goals in taking part in this workshop.  Besides finding out more about (stuff) from the content and ideas, I was also interested in an immersion experience, and to find out much more about myself in the online environment.

There is quite a comprehensive document that describes the structure of the workshop, but in actual fact much more unfolded as the weeks progress(ed).

In actual fact: nothing in mere written form could have prepared me for the roller coaster ride to come – and some of what was there, I didn’t believe.

The first week, was in typical Gilly Salmon stage one mode, – icebreaking, when we played an absolutely marvellous game which I won’t spoil by commenting on.

I’ve since come to collect ideas for icebreakers.  The best ones actually work even if you have ‘done them’ before, and help stretch while getting used to the toys we play with.

I was absolutely astounded by how quickly I found a sense of comradeship and online connection emerging.

(Facilitator) has these little phrases, many of them metaphoric which he uses at times, not so much to answer questions, but to help shape the discussion.

Metaphor is powerful online.
Shaping is a considered term here: not firect, not close off . . .

The second week, we were put into two groups, where basically we were to share ideas, theories and information about being on line.

I was assigned the group.  I often wondered if I was placed intentionally by some deeply thoughtful process, randomly assigned or just matched up on some basis like timezone.
We could visit thje other group, but not post.
But people commented in their group on posts made in the other group.
Like a couple of group blogs really.

(Facilitator) was responsible for this, and he heavily fascilitated, but again with a quite remarkable tone and voice to his posts.

I later discovered the ideas of voice, and our online persona in some of the literature.

What have I learned –

Webairportpicture(snip – bits removed here . . . ) Another aspect that has probably been my third significant transcendent experience, has been a growing awareness of the power of story.  The richness of even a few paragraphs of description, has contributed a lot to the whole tone of this workshop.

Absolutely critical.  Along with metaphor, images and poetry.  But within limits.  Insights from a case study of one need to be carefully filtered.  “I used Flickr and it was crap”  Determining a form of truth from experience is to be treated carefully.
But somehow story unlocks.

Another thing that has interested me is how much it has affected me emotionally.

The keenness to get online, the anxious wait for a response to my post, my question or my suggestion. . .
I also had three seriously rugged experieinces in this workshop, and I cringed for months when I recalled these.  Even the best faciltiation and good structure could not prevent this.
Resilience is needed online at times.

THAT’S IT -I think I had a second report from later, but it is unfindable at the moment.

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