Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 52 seconds

Taking @vconnecting to the Next Level at #digped

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 52 seconds

I think at the Digital Pedagogy Lab Institute at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, we have taken the virtually connecting movement/initiative to a new level; I would even go so far as to say we have turned a corner.

Image “Stairs” by Kiril Strax via Flickr CC-BY-NC-SA

First, we have a team of buddies. Three generous onsite buddies (newbies Lisa & Sarah Hammershaimb and Andrea Rehn who is doing this for the THIRD time – she is a phenomenon all her own) and four virtual buddies (Autumm Caines, Apostolos Koutropoulos and Rebecca Hogue and myself). It is turning out much better than I could have imagined and I am so grateful that these people exist and have this enthusiasm for the project. Check out what Lisa wrote on her blog!

Second, we are much more organized. We have to be, because so many people to coordinate with! so we have a schedule and everything and places fill up in advance and stuff! (oops, I did not want to exclude people – but it’s difficult to have a good conversation with more than 10 people on a hangout – still, considering trying to the Zoom streaming paid-for version which takes 25 people I think). We have several people onsite and online inviting others to join in, and backup virtual buddies in case Rebecca and I can’t be there – and oh my God, we even have a session planned that neither Rebecca nor I will attend!!!

But most importantly: we are more THERE than usual. That’s thanks to the spirit of the kinds of people onsite. For example, Bonnie Stewart invited us today (Tues at 3pm) to join her session to present virtually connecting to her Networks track. We are being invited in, rather than the other way around! Participants onsite will ask us questions, not vice versa. It’s a flipped virtually connecting session!!! Also, Jesse Stommel suggested we participate in the Unconference by proposing our own session on hybridity or such, so onsite participants could join that (that’s tomorrow Wed at 4:15pm that we join in). And yesterday, while we (virtuals) were thanking the onsite people for tweeting about the keynote and stuff, Robin DeRose thanked US for OUR tweets, and how they were influencing the onsite event; it seems also some people seeing our tweets thought some of us WERE onsite 🙂 That’s cute. Yes, it’s a little ironic to meet f2f to discuss the digital, so I think we hyperactive @vconnecting folks and others who tweet and join the hangouts help to keep it “real” haha as in infusing the “digital” and making the event more “hybrid”. Of course, it helps that the Dig Ped Lab had a twitter chat before the event and that they were planning to livestream the keynotes (unfortunately didn’t work y/day but is recorded and will be shared soon – also Scott Johnson who is a virtual participant today gave us a link to Audrey’s talk on her blog!). It also helps that the folks onsite are mostly active tweeters.

I am sure I will have much more insight later in the week, but that’s me for now 🙂

Oh, and here are the two hangouts we had last night (and yes, I stayed up past midnight for these even though I seriously had been planning to sleep… ended up only sleeping at 4am and waking up at 8)

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