Understanding Lurkers

Almost, but not quite a follow up to my last post about stages, this snippet from Spark’s latest podcast sheds some interesting light on why people choose to lurk rather than participate. If you’re one of those who tries to persuade others to invest in social networks and embrace them, perhaps this might help, or maybe you would challenge the premise. Either way, it’s a worthwhile 3 minutes.
Gator

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  • Thanks for the post. I choose to lurk rather than participate. There is always someone who tries to persuade me but this is in vain, I am very stubborn. My friends cant do a thing with me.

  • Thanks, Dean, for sharing this snippet. A good 3 minutes to start my day! I’ll have to think about whether this will resonate with the administrators with whom I work…

  • Thanks for sharing that Dean! I am a much more outgoing person than I used to be! Humility was also the term I would use when it came to me social networking on the web or just a simple friendly face to face chat. I used to be very tongue tied while posting. I am famous for editing, and re-editing, and searching for those words that I was looking for. I learned that doing this though has made my writing much more rich and I use higher levels of language. I also like to lurk and read other blogs to help understand my own views better. I have found through experience I am becoming more of a social extrovert helping me be more outgoing and feel less humiliated. Really builds the confidence! This video is a great set to use in your classroom to start students journal blogging their thoughts and ideas. That is the reverse slogan of your blog title…lol
    For lurkers though I am still on the fence about who is lurking out there!!

    Karie Shielss last blog post..Google Form: Technology. How advanced are we?

  • Kia ora Dean!

    Hmmm. I’m a skeptic. Well presented, well prepared, and well scripted. The talker sounds a bit too confident to be one of your general lurkers. But he did get one thing straight. There’s a hellafalot of them and they all have their own reasons for not participating. I’m not so sure about the humility bit though. Me? I’m the most humble person I know.

    Catchya later
    from Middle-earth

    Ken Allans last blog post..New Ways Of Learning?

  • Thanks, Dean, for sharing this snippet. A good 3 minutes to start my day! I’ll have to think about whether this will resonate with the administrators with whom I work…

  • OK, lets see if I can move from the lurker label because I couldn’t log in to comment to posting a response.

    Do you consider people who subscribe to your blog through RSS as lurkers?

    We can encourage change, even strong arm some, but until people get comfortable posting responses without fear of repercussions or posting something that will haunt them late in life, many people are comfortable just reading.

    Sometimes I find a blog post where I want to post a response and the response is either blocked for spam or in the case of this post, no post without a Word Press log in. It doesn’t mean we are lurkers, we just value our time differently. We tend not to reply if our responses will be blocked or we have to log in to something that we can’t access w/out OpenID.

    Judging others as lurkers or trying to understand them…well just isn’t on my priority list right now, but I am a busy person.

    I might have tried the webcam or audio only version but I am leery that I will be asked to log on again.

    L Winebrenners last blog post..Pay cuts, raising locker and parking fees

  • @LWinebrenner,

    First of all thanks for letting me know my comments we’re open.

    I personally don’t have any problems with lurkers. I think many people consider themselves lurkers when really we’re talking about people who contribute less than the average participators.
    That’s not necessarily bad and certainly is a community dynamic that always will exist. Understanding the Power Law of Distribution makes this not only possible but valuable. Your single response may well be the most important idea here. While you’ve only made one contribution to this blog, it’s significant.

    We also need to allow people to dip their toe in the water and be okay with their place. My only fear is that by “lurking” we mean not contributing at all. At some point in a participatory world, you can only take, but you must give. We need to perhaps re-define “giving” and “sharing” but if we want to move beyond surface engagement to true community, we have to dive in.

  • PB

    Thanks for the post. I choose to lurk rather than participate. There is always someone who tries to persuade me but this is in vain, I am very stubborn. My friends cant do a thing with me.