Teleconferencing and Chat practices

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... part of the technology for communities project,
started off by the authors of [Digital Habitats], Etienne Wenger, Nancy White, and John D. Smith.


Practice Summary

Teleconferences are a fact of life in business and in the life of many communities. Instant messaging tools like AIM, MSN, or Skype or a chat tool or even Twitter together with a regular phone connection provide the equivalent of a "web meetings" tool. Combining the audio channel of a teleconference with the text of an online chat enhances the learning experience for everyone involved. The technology, along with attention to the collaborative spirit can make this form a powerful knowledge-generating process. A community of practice framework helps us bring out the value of this simple practice, whether it’s used by a large group or just two people at a time.

This note describes how to take notes collaboratively while having a conversation on the phone. This collaborative note-taking approach is useful for several reasons:

Audience and relevance

This method will interest you if you lead or participate in conversations in distributed groups that:

“Before the call” methods

A good teleconference requires some preparation to prepare for the social side as well as the technology side. Here are several methods related to setting up a call.

Technical alternatives for meeting:

point of control

Access considerations

Recording the audio conversation (requires planning before the call)

Agenda planning

"During the Call" methods

Ensemble production

"After the call" methods

Reuse the chat notes

Reuse the audio

Share the whole thing

Start the next cycle

Variants and applicability

Health-check questions

This page was originally written by John Smith and Shawn Callahan
and published here.  It uses a template originally developed
Nancy Dixon and Kate Pugh.
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