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Here are some tips for introducing people to LocalWiki for the first time.
Do it one-on-one or in a small group
One of the best ways to get other people on board is by showing LocalWiki to them in an intimate, non-intimidating setting. This way, you can answer everyone's questions, and tailor the introduction to their interests.
Explain the project
[New /about language] We're a grassroots effort to collect, share, and open the world's local knowledge. We want every community to have a community-created local knowledge commons that answers the question "where would I go if I wanted to learn everything there is to know about my community?"
Show general examples
Tailor your examples
Meeting with librarians? The civic-minded? See:
- LocalWiki and Libraries
- LocalWiki in an Educational Setting
- LocalWiki for Local History
- How journalists use LocalWiki
- Community asset mapping
- LocalWiki for activists
Think about what's missing from LocalWiki
What topics could your audience plug in and start contributing to? If your region has a list of pages that should exist, show the list (and if it doesn't, create a wishlist!). You might even pose the same question to your audience--group brainstorming can help get people thinking creatively!
Tell them how it's different from Wikipedia
Often, people get intimidated when they hear "wiki" because they associate it with the "official" knowledge of Wikipedia. But if you emphasize how it's different from Wikipedia, - that it's informal, personal, and that fun and silly content is welcome - you can help dismantle some of these limiting beliefs. Read more about the difference between LocalWiki and Wikipedia.
Show them it's fun!
Show fun entries that you've created or fun entries from other LocalWikis.
Emphasize that not only can you write with an informal and personal tone, but that's it's encouraged. The Davis Wiki is full of informal language.
LocalWiki was designed to be accessible to folks with basic knowledge of wordprocessing programs, like Microsoft Word. If your audience feels comfortable, ask them to try editing themselves. Here are editing instructions, and here's a handout you can print out.
Show them the Activity feed
See this by clicking the "Activity" button next to the title of the city. If there's not a whole lot going on in your region, show the global activity feed. The activity feed helps you see what other people are working on and what's new on the site. It helps you learn neat new things and collaborate on new content