by Frank Odasz

Morino Institute's Public Access Network Directory

The Emerging Association For Community Networking
Executive Director Madeline Gonzalez
(I strongly recommend you co-sponsor this association just to have access to their expertise and resources!)

Lone Eagle Community Networking Clearinghouse
by Frank Odasz, founder of the late Big Sky Telegraph

Brian Vidic's book "Community Information Service Management Guidelines" $49.95

University of Michigan School of Information's community networking newsletter:
(A community networking primer written for AT&T by Frank Odasz is recommended reading at this site.)

One of the most developed web-conferencing systems around is the web version of CAUCUS; See and (Look for the Virtual Civicnet discussion archives!)

You're welcome to the grant templates and community networking articles posted at and's_Place

(NOTE: David Woolley maintains and EXCELLENT clearinghouse of Internet collaborative software options!!)

From:         "David R. Woolley"" <drwool@SKYPOINT.COM> 
Subject:      Re: Conferencing 

Status: RO

At 08:08 PM 9/11/97 GMT, Nancy Willard wrote: If some folks who have been
participating in these conferencing discussions would be willing to fill
me in on your opinion of this technology and its usefulness in facilitating
dialogue I would be very appreciative. I would also be interested in hearing
from other folks who have used different conferencing systems in other
circumstances. I am interested in the following issues: 

>What particular software system has been used? 
>How well does this software system work to foster dialogue? 
>How easy is it to learn to negotiate in the conferencing environment? 

>Does anyone have experience with different conferencing software systems
that they would recommend as a more effective alternative? 

>Have the discussions been moderated? 

>What training has been provided to the moderators (if any) to foster

>What strategies have worked well and what have not worked very well?

Whew, that's a tall order. I could write a book-length answer, but instead
I'll just give you a few quick comments and pointers.

Good conferencing software is important. But good moderators/facilitators
are much more important. This is a fairly rare skill, unfortunately. People
who have a natural talent for it usually pick it up pretty quickly once they
start using a conferencing system regularly.

A lot has been written about facilitating online conferences. I've collected
links to the best pieces I've found on this page:

I also maintain a comprehensive index of Web-based conferencing software:

On the above page you'll also find an article entitled "Choosing Web Conferencing
Software" that will give you some tips about selecting from the dozens of
products available.

And finally, if you'd like to see conferencing in use at a community network,
the Twin Cities Free-Net's conferencing center is at

From:         Amy Borgstrom <amyb@SEORF.OHIOU.EDU> 
Subject:      Conferencing resources 

Here's a good list of resources that begin to address online facilitation
and conferencing thanks to Amy Eunice and Lisa Kimball at Metasystems Design
in DC.

Charlotte Hunter's new organization which is called The Virtual

Notes on Going Virtual, by Ray Grenier & George Metes

Communities of Practice: A Review of the Literature This site has a review
of the literature on Communities of Practice and some other useful links
to related articles and sources.

The Fun Factor in Groupware Design and Implementation Introduces the idea
of building groupware systems which are supportive of collaborative learning,
decision-making and creativity.

Check out Peter and Trudy Johnson-Lenz's website. It's loaded with great
stuff. Note particularly the paper, Humanizing Distributed Electronic
Meetings_(March 1995)

Here's the outline for how we tried to lead the online course on Conferencing:
Virtual Facilitation Training Outline

Fostering Reflective Dialogues for Teacher Professional Development

Three online courses, including one on "Mentoring Online; How to Create and
Teach an Online Course" are available at:

If you have any questions or comments e-mail