Isolation is the dream killer. A healthy community or the lack of it is the decisive factor for the thriving of its members. The feeling of being part of something bigger than oneself is transformational. Meetups, online forums, congregations, cohorts, support or study groups, communities abound and provide accountability, identity, and mastery.
Humanity faces challenges that it can only address with global collaboration. So far, the solutions are primarily closed in silos and fragmented all over the Internet and on its peripheries. Imagine the vision of building a global knowledge graph like Roam coupled with a community. There needs to exist a platform, or, better, the broad network (wide walls) of interconnected platforms, yet focused on targeting community creation around some niche.
Edit (a spoiler): I figured the communities below can be hosted by the same instance of the forem as they are all relating to learning and the hashtags can serve for distinguishing subcommunities. Tomorrow, this platform should be alive and ready to host your subcommunity. The Web Monetization of it should come soon.
The platform should be open, safe, private, empowering, and sustainable. It needs to be open for ideas to flow freely and build on each other with no limit (high ceiling), radical inclusion (low threshold) and supporting decentralized content via cross-posting. It needs to be safe to protect from attacks. It needs to be private to allow free expression and guard the information and ownership. It needs to be empowering to enable customization in discoverability, feed, and choosing who to follow. It needs to be sustainable with the opportunity to monetize the content to allow creators to devote to the work.
The tools to set up a platform like that already exist. You are just using one. Another good news? If you are reading this before the following Wednesday, you can probably apply for the grant. Here are some subcommunities that I would love to see and help emerge:
- Art Exhibit allows artists of any stage and background to present their work and receive feedback and funds.
- Best Practices allows educators to collaboratively scrutinize the learning and teaching dynamics and grow through that.
- Book Club allows anybody to create and join a book club to gain a wide range of views on the critical readings.
- College preparation is a community for students, parents, teachers, and alumni to guide their journey.
- Entrepreneurship and leadership is a site for founders of initiatives and organizations to support themselves.
- Helping Stories allows helping initiatives and NGOs to present their work to get inspiration, partnerships, and funding.
- Ideas is a community where the conversations on materializing dreams and testing new product ideas happens.
- Journalism is a site where journalists worldwide can open up new perspectives by publishing or linking original content.
- Language Lab is a place to exchange learning know-how, community feedback, and conversations on topics.
- LocalX is a place where conversations relevant specifically to a physical location and its inhabitants can occur.
- Mental Health Club is a community for those struggling to get peer support and disperse the isolation and suffering.
- MOOCX is a community for hosting open course(s) and facilitating the community around them to boost completion.
- Music is a site for all music lovers to discover new, discuss favorites, add their own, collaborate, and learn to play/sing.
- Nature Saving disseminates info on the preservation of the environment and organizing collective impact.
- Papers is a community for hosting discussions on research, bridging the gap between academy and laypeople.
- Play! is a space for discussion of games, toys, and plays and allows makers to present their creations and get feedback.
- Service is a community where people can ask for help and do service, consultation, and support others.
- Stories International is a site for collecting the unique stories of individuals as recorded by themselves or their close ones.
- The Minimalism community allows anybody to share their journey to a simple lifestyle and gain support and accountability.
- The STEM community facilitates K-12 STEM education and individual and collaborative tackling of problems.
Feel free to take any of the ideas above and use it for your proposal. You can then start building on the platform once it is out.
Image Credit Kevin M. Gill on Flickr, modified by me.