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New Member Be Welcome Groupbrainstorm

UPDATE: This wiki page was dedicated to brainstorming about all aspects of welcoming new BW members.

It was first created before the Bamberg Unconference to discuss a possible future New Member BeWelcome Group.

Since then that idea was implemented. We moved the following discussion from the original wiki to this wiki.

For info about the current New Member BeWelcome Group, please visit: http://www.bewelcome.org/wiki/NewMemberBeWelcomeGroup

Please start the discussions in the: New Member BeWelcome Group and when you reach a consensus you can add it here in this wiki

1. Goal of the New Member BeWelcome Group

Find new members and send them a welcome message with tips on howto use the website.

2. How to find New Members

Go to the search tool http://www.bewelcome.org/searchmembers/mapoff

Enter your country, open advanced options, add "no, sorry", result sort order "new members", and search.

You'll get the newest members on top.

3. How to avoid welcoming the same person twice

Receiving one welcoming message from a dedicated volunteer is fine, but a new member receives tons of welcoming messages (especially from members who do not live in the same location) might feel like 'spam'. How do we avoid welcoming someone too many times?

leoalone - Mon, 18 Mar 13 15:08:03 +0100 Actually ow many are too many ? having two or three is acceptable and very welcoming.

Proposed solution: All the new members come in a queue, and once a dedicated volunteer has welcomed them, they disappear from the queue. leoalone - Mon, 18 Mar 13 15:08:03 +0100 variant: appear in the queue as number, as soon the number arrive to 3 it disappear. variant2: also regular messages receive by the new entry should count in the 3 to disappear ?

A greeter should see the number of new members waiting for a greeting at their dashboard.

The new members should stay in the queue as long as they have not received at least 1 greeting from a NMBW Team member

leoalone - Mon, 18 Mar 13 15:08:03 +0100 remember that NMBW team should have a special page to send greeting, otherwise the system would not know that is an official greeting and not a casual message.

It should be crucial for a new member to enter at least one language while generating a profile in BW. This language entered will be the key indicator for the NMBW Team member to send the right welcome message with the correct language the new member understood.

It is beneficial that the NMBW Team member first greets those members of their nearby surroundings, so the chance that the greeter and new member will meet are higher. ALTERNATIVELY: Greeters only see new members from their country, and all the countries that have no greeter will be handled by "super-greeters" thorgal67 - Mon, 18 Mar 13 10:48:09 +0100 I'm not so much in favour of having different levels of greeters, I'd prefer the greeters to use the tool responsibly and only greet those people from their country/area (only when they stay in the queue too long they should be handled by non-residents)

leoalone - Mon, 18 Mar 13 15:08:03 +0100 proposal: up to 6 hour only same city, up to 12 hours same region, up to 24 hours same state, more than 24 hours anyone.

4. Invite them to the local group

(You have to be an admin of the local group to do that.)

Go here http://www.bewelcome.org/groups/xxx/memberadministration (where xxx is the group ID)

In "enter username", put the username of the new member, search, invite <username>

5. What to write

(that's my template message for welcoming in greece, i edit and delete the parts that don't apply)

leoalone - Mon, 18 Mar 13 15:08:03 +0100 abouit what to write: any welcomes should have some readily available template, so can just click on it and the template appear in the page, so can be edit according the needs.

beatnickgr (the original is in greek, i just translated for the wiki)

Hello <username> or <name>

I am <name>, i'm volunteering for BeWelcome and i'm administrating the group of <city> where i invited you.

As you might already know, BeWelcome is open-source and built by volunteers like you and me.

I see you could upgrade your profile. I'll offer you some tips, if you want to follow.

First you'll have to put a profile picture. If you don't want to put your face, you can put something else that represents you (avatar, landscape, activity, or a picture of you without your face like me, etc...)

If you have a profile on another network, you could copy from there and paste in BeWelcome. You can also look for your friends (try the same username), and write them a comment.

If you don't live in the center of the city, but in another municipality, you can update your location, so people who look for a host nearby your university/airport/port/stadium/etc can find you in the search.

If english is too dificult for you, you can choose another language from the settings. Not only the page, but even the profiles will switch to your language if the user translated it (try my profile for example). You can also translate your profile so that other members will see you in their language.

If you're not <98> years old but you want to hide your real age, you can do so in the settings.

Don't forget to join the group <city>, to check if we have a meeting. And if you can host on emergency, you can also join <emergency group>.

Ready! I hope i didn't bore you and you didn't consider i'm spaming you. For any related question, you can check the FAQ from the menu, or connect to irc://chat.freenode.net/bewelcome/ or send me a pm.

See you soon, at the next meeting!

<my name>

6. Further ideas to discuss at the conference in Bamberg

As I can't participate, please find some of my ideas for further discussion for the NMBW Team Sorry in advance for the long message :)

A queue to see new members

A queue should be installed, where all new members will become visible for the members of the NMBW Group. A greeter should see the number of new members waiting for a greeting at her/his many dashboard.

The new members should stay in the queue as long as they have not received at least 1 greeting from a NMBW Team member

It need to be visible when the new member joined and how long she/he already stays in the queue already.

Selection process of new members to greet

Those new members in the queue should be separated or selected by

  • all
  • language skills (to be able to choose the native language)
  • country
  • my region (~200km from where you are from)

So the NMBW team member can select the members based on those criteria and send effective greetings out

Interim solution till the queue is available

As long as a queue is not installed, maybe it is possible to program something to show that the new member became already a welcome message. For e.g. all greeting texts should start with a standard text like: *Welcome in BeWelcome* As soon as the new member received such a message from a greeter, a warning will show up if another NMBW Team member is trying to send this new member a message again

  • > we need to be careful avoiding to annoy a person with several welcome messages.

Language selection during sign up

A new member has to select a language while generating a profile in BeWelcome (not sure if it is a must yet). This language entered will be the key indicator for the NMBW Team member to send the right welcome message with the correct language the new member understood.

In addition it would be beneficial to have an overview what kind of languages BeWelcome is offering to select compared with the language skills of the NMBW Team => to search greeters which are able to speak those language.

If the new member can not be greeted in their native language and does not have English in her/his list of languages, an English version should be allowed to send after a certain time ~ all members in the queue over 14days leoalone - Mon, 18 Mar 13 15:08:03 +0100 if one does not indicate ANY language, you can stand a standard one. else you have to search for someone bale to write, if you do not succeed send a very short message saying "It looks that you are one of the first member that speak your language, We are unable to send you a greeting in your language. If you can read also other languages can you add to your list, so people can write you in a language you can understand ? can you also help us greeting new members from your area ?" this translated in ANY of the available languages.

Local & international greeting

Of course it is beneficial that the NMBW Team member first greets those members of their nearby surrounding, so the chance that the greeter and new member will meet are higher.

As I am not a programmer, maybe there is a possibility to compare the locations of new members with the close by greeters of her/his area as well (max. 5 nearest greeters with a max. radius of 100km). For example: If I would greet someone in Amsterdam with my personal greeting text where I try to give a warm welcome and guidance about BW to the new member, an additional section which get filled automatically (info about local greeters leaving close to Amsterdam) be sending the message to the location of the new member.

Above text is individually written by a team member of the New Member BeWelcome Team, in your area are following team members available which you could contact for any further assistance ~ 5km away = link to the near by greeter profile ~ 30km away = link to the near by greeter profile ~100km (as max.radius) = link to the profile

Application to NMBW

Due to the special functionality a NMBW Team member might become, it should be considered that a new member, should fill out a template as kind of an application to the Team. The team can then select Yes/No/under condition in a democratic matter so the new member will get permission or not

Evaluation of NMBW Team strength

In order to know the strength of our team, we should consider that all members as well as a new applier, need to fill out a template form, so we can get the info:

  • what languages can the greeter speak
  • where is the greeter from
  • template of the individual greeting text

This will be crucial in order to find out if certain languages are not covered as well as which countries are covered by our team

Storage area of NMBW templates and each welcome text

We should consider to have a storage area for NMBW templates I do not know if you can store Word, Excel, PDF, etc. files somehow in BW. leoalone - Mon, 18 Mar 13 15:08:03 +0100 text only ! But having an area where our team can go back to the main templates as well as to see the greeting texts of colleagues is beneficial for the know how exchange in future

Template examples from previous CS NMW group

Below are the 2 main templates we used in CS which I converted into BW just now

Application Requirements

1. You should be a member for at least 6+ months thorgal67 - Mon, 18 Mar 13 11:00:17 Is that not WAY too long? We have quite some new members signing up who may have had a lot of experience in another hospex community, and letting them wait 6 months is IMHO too much. Maybe we can reduce that time frame if they can prove previous Welcoming experience elsewhere? beatnickgr Instead of a time frame, we should require a minimum of 5 comments. They're easy to get, just find your friends from the other hospex.

2. You should have a proper filled profile with explanation of hosting, being hosted and meeting experience as well as related comments

3. You should know the Basics of BW, how to find groups, search for a host, where to start volunteering support

4. You should have a complete profile with pictures (min. 1 picture where your face is visible) beatnickgr why is that? 30% of the most active members don't have their face in the profile, are they excluded from NMBW?

5. You should not have strong quality negative references of any important reason

Greeting text content

01. General Introduction

  • why?: to explain why you are approaching this new member with your message

02. Small introduction about yourself

  • why?: to explain who you are so the new member will recognize that it is not a spam or system generated message

03. Include a personal story from one of your experiences in BW

  • why?: to brake the ice, gain interests to read you message and sharing your experiences or explain how you participate so the new member get a better understanding about BW

04. Small introduction what makes BW special

  • why?: to explain shortly what is the difference to other hospitality site and how BW works

05. Include information about the importance of filling out the profile

  • why?: a lot of new members often do not fill out their profile at the beginning and this is important for our online community to gain trust and to to know the person

06. Include link for how to find groups: http://www.bewe.....

  • why?: to find local or groups of their interests to connect with others

07. Information how the hospitality exchange in BW works (as guest and as host)

  • why?: those are the main tools and a new member should understand how to use them

08. Information about our trust network options (comments, friends...)

  • why?: that the new member is using our trust network tools correctly

09. Other information of importance (links tips to volunteering groups, safety tips, etc.)

  • why?: to get active and to highlight safety information right from the beginning

Additional info for local greeting texts

10. hint of local activities or info of frequently meetings in your area

  • why?: So they get aware and can attend nearby meetings

11. hint to local group

  • why?: So they can find the local group directly

Searching NMBW volunteers to strengthen the team

When the NMBW Team and functions are in place, we could consider to spread, the existence of this group. Searching members to close our team language gaps A template to search for members need to be considered

Decision making progress in NMBW Team

As we might not have a Team leader and moderator team in BW, we should consider a way to discuss further actions and improvement suggestions Maybe a poll-system to get each members feedback or an excel file in the new storage area might be useful.

Liaison with Programmer to support NMBW Team

As many functions need to be programmed in order to have get the NMBW running, we would need to know who has the skills to program and support