There are many SilverStripe community tools available – both online and offline – that help users interact, get help, share ideas and learn from each other. You name it: IRC (Internet relay chat), forums, uservoice, SilverStripe blog, Stackoverflow, Community Newsletters, social media, meetups, etc.
Why Community Slack channel?
Although we have many other tools available, Slack stands out as the channel that would be appealing to SilverStripe community members. Slack is widely used in the tech ecosystem. It’s likely that many community members already have the application installed.
With Slack, It is easier to deal with time-zone differences (IRC doesn’t store messages if you’re offline). You don’t need to be online to have a conversation with another member. Interaction models are also very rich with inline code samples, reactions and voting. It is very easy to discover and join those channels that are of interest to you. Mobile access and notifications via Slack are excellent. You don’t need to use an application – Slack is a web-based system too.
There are over 21,000 members in the open source community. With Slack’s ability to deliver instant messages among those members, help is more likely to come to those in need. Awesome initiatives are more likely to come, when members interact with each other and can bounce off ideas.
For all IRC fans, we are not shutting down IRC. However, Slack has more active users, so it is very likely that you will benefit from it more.
While Slack is great for socialising and getting immediate help, keep in mind that there are limitations such as message archives and public access. If you think your problem affects other people or you have an important announcement to make, it is also good to use one of the other channels such as the forum.
Some tips to manage the potential chaos:
- Adjust your notification settings! Too many can drive you mad. Too few – well, you may miss some good stuff. So remember to adjust the notifications until they are just right.
- Activate ‘Do Not Disturb’ function so that you won’t be waken up in the middle of the night because some member has just posted a photo of their cat.
- Mute a channel – allowing you to browse a channel without being notified of unread messages.
Have I got you excited? Well, it’s time to click the ‘Submit’ button and be part of this new and exciting channel.
A very special thanks to Slack member @nils who has formed the idea of a community Slack channel and is running it with enthusiasm and excellence. @firesphere, @chillu and @zauberfisch are awesome too - you are all keeping the channel alive, so thank you!