[OSList] Sharing Our Best Recommendations with Each Other

Lucas Cioffi lucas at barkbest.com
Fri May 16 14:14:54 PDT 2014

Hi All,

I'm quite excited to bring this topic up and I'm hoping there are a few
like-minded souls willing to explore this direction with me.

*The Goal:* *complement rather than replace this discussion list with a
searchable knowledge repository, consisting of stories and recommendations*

*What: *I'm building a tool which can help us share stories and
recommendations with each other in an efficient way.  I would like to put
it to work in service of the OS community.  When I floated this idea on
this discussion list a few months ago, I got some great feedback.  Some
people see the potential for how we can better archive the stories and
insights that we are already sharing on this list.

*Why: *Every one of us probably has at least a few quick & useful insights
about OST and facilitation each month (that ends up being thousands of
insights per month!), yet we are collectively sharing only a small fraction
of all those insights.  On a practical level, if someone is planning an
open space event and faced with a particular challenge, they could perform
a quick search on the knowledge repository to see who has dealt with this
in the past.  After holding their event, they can add their insights for
what worked and didn't work for them.

*How:* The tool is called Bark!Best and it can do some fun things.  At the
simplest level, it is a way to share questions and answers and to make
those answers easy to find.  Most interactions happen like this-- people
sharing short recommendations in text form.  At a more advanced level, it
is similar to a 24/7 online open space; it lets participants take any
question and post it as a video-chat session at any time of the day.

*Getting Started*
I took a few first steps.  Harrison gave me permission to go through the
full text of the User Guide; I extracted 160+ recommendations and their
respective 270+ supporting reasons, organizing and posting them all here in
a Q&A format: http://www.barkbest.com/openspace

Those quotes from the User Guide are just a starting point for all of us to
build upon.  *Think of a living book that is written and updated by all of
us, all the time-- what an amazing body of knowledge that could be. * For
example, the User Guide describes two "ways to empower
as a group, we might be able to think of a dozen more based on all our

*Next Steps*

   - Some of you might have some exciting ideas for what might be possible
   here.  Please, please, please reach out to me or to everyone on this list.
   - It would be absolutely amazing to work with a few folks who would
   donate a few hours of their time to go through some of the most fruitful
   parts of the archive, to harvest insights and copy them into the knowledge

*Respect & Caution*
Having been on this list for five years, I respect and honor that this
discussion list has been going a very long time before I got here.  I
recognize that I cannot succeed without a few other people who are willing
to take the lead and guide this project so that it meets the actual needs
of this community.  I hope you'll join me!

Lucas Cioffi
Co-Founder, Bark!Best
NCDD Board Member, 2011-2013
Charlottesville, VA
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