Being a part of a community within this day and age is not uncommon. Whether you know it or not, at some point in time, you will have communicated with various other participants in a community. But what is a community? When thinking about my experience over the past few weeks within the Wentworth Community, I have been able to define what I believe a community is.
A community is a shared space (a forum, an online group etc.), where views, values or experiences are similar, thus resulting in conversation between users whether through text, images, videos or the like. This can give rise to the creation of friendships and the expansion of networks.
Through my experience within the Wentworth community, I have come to learn that “we can’t exchange social currency in a vacuum. We need other people” (Oatway, pg. 98). In simple terms, a community cannot exist without people. The Facebook groups that I have become a part of, form a space where people from across the globe can come together to discuss ideas about Wentworth.
As stated in my first post within this assessment, I have been a part of the Wentworth community for quite a while now and thought that because I knew a lot about the show, it would be easier for me to become more involved and to explore whether it is a community. My main points of attack were this Facebook group and this one, as I believed that with over 13,000 members in each, there would most likely be daily conversation happening, as you might expect with any large group. The Facebook groups I joined were both administered groups where rules were set out in the ‘about’ section. I go into a little more detail about this here.
However, despite the fact that I have followed the show avidly for many years, I found it quite difficult to interact with others. I believe that I wasn’t successful for the reason that Season 4 commences on the 10th of May 2016, one day after this assessment is due. As stated in this post, due to the fact that there is so little show content to discuss, unless you are the ‘first’ to see new trailers/images etc., you most certainly will not be able to get much of a following around what you post. I have commented on various posts with little or no replies.
As discussed throughout the Network Literacy readings and lectures in Week 2, I used tactics such as posing questions and tagging other users within my comments or posts. By tagging users, it increased my chances of getting some sort of a reply as when you tag someone it gives them a notification, drawing attention to the comment. Questions also give more of a reason for others to share their thoughts.
This community is definitely something I want to continue interacting with as it paves the way for networking around one of my favourite television shows. I hope that I will eventually spark some deeper conversation, with the new season commencing tomorrow!
Oatway, J 2012, Mastering Story, Community and Influence: How to Use Social Media to Become a Socialeader Wiley, Hoboken. 97-109.