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Stephen Downes

Actual backchannel logs:

Nicole Garst

Hi, Beth.

I've just had my first backchannel experience from a conference organizer perspective, so wanted to share what it's like as newbies. We recently held the New Times - New Tech Conference, hosted by the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits and MAP for Nonprofits (our 2009 Nonprofit Technology and Communications Conference). About a month beforehand, I promulgated the #ntnt tag through the @smartnonprofits Twitter account, and then the Minnesota nonprofit twitter-ers helped spread it around and use it, before and during the conference.

I think we are still incorporating how to use the information into our mix for evaluating/planning, and certainly there are many comments made in the online evaluation that echo the twitter stream. But I think the attendees who Twittered *were* more engaged (I know I am when I tweet the NTC!) and seemed to have a very high level of satisfaction.

From a trainer/organizer perspective, I personally will take all the feedback I can get, good and bad. Although I've never had the experience of publicly being put on spot by a Tweet, I think backchannels are a good way to open-source your event planning/management/training. Which can be uncomfortable; but I'm glad we were part of the conversation about our conference.

Thanks for the usual resource-rich post!


Was just listening to NPR and hearing that Congress and Senators were busy tweeting their constituents during Pres. Obama's speech and wondering how he monitors that back channel!

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