[Air-L] Online Engagement Metrics

Steven Clift slc at publicus.net
Tue Apr 27 11:32:39 PDT 2010

How might you measure this?

Engagement: Strengthen, broaden, and diversify engagement through effective
and meaningful online discussion and information exchange on public issues

This is an updated (draft) goal of E-Democracy.org and applies essentially
to the online spaces and experiences we host ourselves.

We need your help in identifying metrics that are both measurable and that
measure something useful.

While there is something satisfying about simply hosting online spaces that
last years while many spaces flame out in weeks or months (or are filled with
flames like online news comments) "open" is not a metric that is all that
persuasive with potential volunteers or funders.

So what should we measure? What measures will help us track our inputs and

For example "inclusion" is a big emphasis
http://e-democracy.org/inclusion in recent years, so we are very
interested in how we compare the results of what we are doing to in lower
income/highly diverse/immigrant areas (where we have some funding) with
what is happening in our all-volunteer areas (we have 10 neighborhood level
Issues Forums open and suddenly 10 new ones in the start-up pipeline
driven by new volunteers for example - http://e-democracy.org/nf ).

Once you move from volunteer oriented work to funded efforts, the bar
is a lot higher (even if you still have lots of volunteers everywhere.) So
what and how would you measure against this goal?

Steven Clift

P.S. We've had a decent discussion on this post on the Democracies
Online Exchange:
What would you add?

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