D'Arcy from Winnipeg
Solution Architecture, Business & Entrepreneurship, Microsoft, and Adoption

Virtual User Groups - Excellent Option For Promoting SIG's

Wednesday, November 7, 2007 1:27 AM

I got an email from someone looking for support for a user group he had started up. There was an interesting catch though: the group was virtual!

The initial meeting had been conducted over Live Meeting, had 4 speakers each sharing part of the overall time, and basically extended the community beyond any local geographical boundaries...in fact one of the speakers was from the Netherlands!

This got me thinking...how often do we look at our groups and think "man, it would be so kewl if we could get a SIG going for <insert technology here>, but I don't want to cannibalize our own group with setting up an entirely separate event". Factor in time for sourcing speakers, getting speakers to come in, getting a venue...it makes the idea of a SIG (Special Interest Group) seem daunting and counter productive.

But creating a virtual group...now there's some merit in that idea.

- No venue to rent
- No speakers to fly in
- No food to coordinate

Now, for a main user group event of course all these things are still good to have...its what makes it an "event". But for those groups that want to start splinter groups focussing on subsets of .NET, going virtual has a lot of potential.



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