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Prioritizing social media integration

Social Media Integration

Most conversation around Fedora and Fedora events happens through social media and chat platforms. Incorporating these platforms into Fedora Hubs would greatly increase the chances of wide-spread use.

The problem

The popularity of social media, chat, and photo sharing platforms varies by location. What might be popular in the United States may not even work in India.

We needed to know which platforms were used where, and how popular or frequently they were used.

Contextual interviews

During conversations with Fedora folk around the world, it quickly became clear that we needed more information about the platforms on which Fedora folk were communicating. 


In many parts of the world, Fedorans only use software that works on mobile phones, and can handle poor connectivity. Also important is being open source and true to the spirit of Fedora. There are also often folks who have been using a particular tool (such as IRC , or internet relay chat) for such a long time that they are unlikely to change regardless of its ability to work well on mobile phones, or how user-friendly it is.


Some of my interviewees showed or mentioned specific software for social media, chat, or photo sharing. When it came time to delve into this more precisely, I asked each of them which particular platforms they and the folks they knew used.


Events Pages

In addition to the direct communication channels that chat programs and social media provide, they make it very easy to share information far and wide. They also often offer space for discussions, photos, and other media. It would be fantastic if all of this media were easily (or even automatically) incorporated into an event’s page after it happened:

Survey Design
Demographics and selecting a survey platform

I first needed to figure out which demographics information was necessary. It's too easy to fatigue folks taking surveys, potentially resulting in not getting needed information. Not only that, some seemingly innocuous questions actually aren’t innocuous at all, and some questions are difficult or impossible to answer.


In the end, I only asked for my respondent’s locations. Age, sex and gender, and race and ethnicity - all potentially complicated questions - weren’t relevant.


The location question was somewhat complicated because it required that I find a free survey platform that supported logic. There is no reason to tax people’s resources by asking them questions that don’t relate to the region they selected. In this instance, I selected google forms, even though it does not support the ability to alter the text of the 'other' response to something less, well, 'othering'.


Unfortunately, I was not able to find a free platform which allowed me to incorporate someone’s answers to a previous question into a follow-up question. That would have greatly reduced the work the survey takers had to do, likely increasing the numbers of responses I got.

Organizing a survey

As with the demographics question, how easy a survey is to take has a lot to do with how well it's organized. Lots of similar questions in a row with no break is typically difficult to handle. Between Mo and I, we came up with categories with a small number of items in them, and with good clarity in the questions we asked. 


Below is a subset of the questions we asked:


Unfortunately, the results were not in early enough for me to analyze them. However, the information we collected should be very useful for prioritization of the integration of social media and photo sharing platforms with Hubs.

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