How to improve community hangouts?

Guys, there is a problem. We don’t have reached the critical mass for the last hangout. It’s not the first time. :sweat_smile:
Can you help me to get why?

  • Have a public face-to-face Hangout with many people is no longer the right thing?
  • We have to re-schedule it in other hours, outside business hours? As @Ctek @syntaxerrormmm @hunv already suggested
  • Does a public hangout scare people? Maybe a private hangout with me and a few people (developers) could work better.
  • Should we make these hangouts more valuable? Like a training hangout?

From my point of view community hangout is aiming to

  • meet up each other, show our faces and bonding of our own.
  • discuss about NethServer, ideas and developments in real-time
  • learn some new stuff about us and the NethServer project

I wonder if you have any thoughts on this
@davidep @giacomo @filippo_carletti @ironsky @mabeleira @sitz @WillZen @apradoc @Nas @robb @Ctek @dz00te @stephdl @GG_jr @vhinzsanchez @Jim @jackyes @lvicentini @mark_nl @craaaft @mikabeckerich @Greg @hany @kisaacs @eliezer.axiem @Hunv @bwdjames @a4rgl @Walter_Schoenly @syntaxerrormmm @Adam @firsttiger @EddieA @islipfd19 @dnutan @flatspin

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Maybe a Hangout can have an “official” part and a relax part after that.
The Official part can be recorded and published on YouTube or something similar and there may be a short introduction into one function of Nethserver each time. How to install, how to use and maybe how to troubleshoot.
The first “lessons” should be some really basic stuff. So don’t start with stuff that has to be done by console.

That way the hangouts may be more sexy and have a bigger benefit, even if not many people are participating.

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So you think that a training part would be more valuable than just chit-chat or discuss each other.

Based on the goals you explained before, I think it makes sense anyways.

This would greatly help the attendance, from my point of view. Be aware that not all companies allow their employees to attend video-conferences not relevant for the core business during business time (e.g. I actually work for a transport company with most of the IT infrastructure running on proprietary softwares).

The main issue with this type of approach is the one I will explain below.

I don’t think so. I think it is a good idea to associate a face to a nickname, as it strengthens the community and the bonds within each people composing it.

Good idea, but this would be an additional goal, not the main goal of the hangouts. You may see them as “training hangouts” instead of “community hangouts”.

Basically, as far as I may see it, the main problem for the community hangouts is that the community is sparse on the planet Earth in different continents (and even in the same continent, in different timezones). What can be “out of business” hours for me may be “business time” for someone else in the world. Plus, everyone of us have other interest in life (not me, but someone has also a family and some children to attend to), so not every times are optimal, if you don’t want to get divorced ;).

In this case, my suggestion would be to create “local” community hangouts, so to be able to cover up 2/3 timezones each and (this is also mandatory, IMHO) to record each local hangout. In this way, the recordings could be viewed from other timezones and requests may be asked for a particular argument to be explained again on a different local hangout. The cons on this approach are that devs and people involved in the community have to organize several hangouts each month instead of only one and be available also on strange times of the day. I don’t know what are the constraints for an hangout per month, but I will re-evaluate also this point. Maybe one single hangout, not to be given up and mandatory, every 3 months may be sufficient to share ideas and organize some work.

I do not want to say to anyone how to deal with his/her job or life, I was just sharing ideas :wink:


Local community hangouts based on different timezones, yeah. I like it.
I need to point out that I can’t guarantee my attendance. I can try anyway.
Three timezones like:

  • EDT, VET, AMT, BRT (America and South America)
  • CEST, BST, EEST (Europe, UK)
  • CST, IST, AWST (Asia, Australia, India, Philipines, China)

Yes, that brings a little bit more value to this sessions instead of only doing video-chatting.

What is the day exactly? :alien:

I still think the setup of the last few hangouts is in the good direction. At least the hangouts I attended were. First hangout I attended was more like a get-to-know-eachother kind of hangout. The second was more towards development.
We still are a young community and we all need to learn the ropes of community building and how to be an effective community. In setting a scope for a hangout with a predefined agenda, we can all learn from such a hangout. Both in using hangouts as in the content of the hangout.
A community hangout every 1 or 2 months (it is already proven hard to have a hangout each month) should still be a goal for the community. It unites the members and gives another way to discuss ideas and options.
What I would like to see is that more ‘specialized’ hangouts start too. Like a hangout for the dev team, the documentation team, the community team etc… These can be private although I truly believe in transparency so others can also (re)view the hangout. Maybe a written summary with all subjects and decisions can be made afterwards if there is no hangouts-on-air link available.
Hangouts (or at least face-to-face conversation) can be very effective and fast to come to decisions. So, even with a small amount of members, a hangout still can be useful.


Welcome back friend, I have missed your wise posts :slight_smile:

I do think its the right thing. Its like a forum, only its video chat…much more personal, IMO.

Definitely! and if possible, like others had suggested, on different timezones.

Maybe, or maybe not. I think its about how it has been advertised. Maybe pin the topic…then ensure that it is available to all/all are welcome to attend (maybe some does not think “public” is for all :smile:).

While some others do not think they need it (they already have deployed a working version). Advertise it as “this is your chance to meet and greet people/developers behind NethServer…share your thoughts, feature requests, and appreciation personally!”

Training hangouts, I think, will not be that successful. Maybe this can be done in 1 time basis per feature (and per NS version perhaps), then, publish the video how-to in how-to section linked in YouTube and all questions will be answered there (or can be asked in succeeding Hangouts). TIme-limited, It will be up to the person what section to watch and what to watch.

Just chimming-in my opinion…not asserting it :sweat_smile:


I would prefer a hangout with a specific topic to discus and find fast a solution as @robb wrote .

If a specific topic is interesting I would join it in the night as well. I am not a developer and if I have time maybe I would join a developer hangout only to hear what is going on and to see who are this great people who do all this work.

I also like the idea of a [quote=“syntaxerrormmm, post:31, topic:3105”]
“community hangouts”

only to see each other and get to know.

The time zone hangout is a good idea but as I mentioned before, if I consider my free time, I would do it most of the time if I see a benefits for the Nethserver. It’s the question do I join a hangout for one hour or do I work on the documentation for one hour? Which will have the better benefit?[quote=“alefattorini, post:30, topic:3105”]
training part

The training part is an other option but I wouldn’t call it a hangout. This is more a webinar which is common in the meantime. I joined one this morning at 0:00 - 1:00 because it was from a German company about FEM simulation. If we prepare it well we could advertise it and get more people aware of Nethserver. And later we can publish it at Youtube as @Hunv already mentioned.

Over all I would suggest IMHO as well more specific hangout which consider all the good ideas like time zone, specific topic or chit-chat, webinar etc.

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The time zone based hangouts are a good idea. With regards to scheduling, having it outside of office hours as this should allow more people to join in.

The idea of having “official training” hangouts as well as a more relaxed or informal hangouts is definitely something to be explored and the informal hangouts could include something more formal on occasion, depending on what is trending at the time.

I may have some more thoughts but I am a little swamped with work priorities so will post details as and when I can


I think you must be more restrictive with date.
Personally, when I look the doodle, I really don’t know what to put for disponibility.
Between monday to fryday and saturday/ sunday, it’s really different…
So I suggest you to fix a small bunch of days ( three or four max) and let’s each one making it’s disponibility.
Actually, it’s too open, so nobody know what to do…

All the bast


I’m almost always available during office hours and I can surely find a free hour on Saturdays :wink:

But, of course, I prefer hanging out in front of a beer! :beer:


Thank you all guys, I got many tips!
Making a recap of your thoughts:

  • more ‘specialized’ meetings with a clear topic
  • meetings for teams: dev team, the docs team, the community team, translation team
  • have an official part (recorded) and a relax part (after or before that) to see each other and get to know
  • written summary with all subjects and decisions afterward
  • schedule on different timezone to reach members sparse on the planet Earth in different continents
  • having it outside of office hours as this should allow more people to join in
  • more restrictive with date, just a small bunch of days

And that’s my proposal, I’d like to create some “meetings” with these features:

  • a single and specific subject, for example:
  • “Testing Urbackup on NethServer”
  • “How to move forward the Raspberry spin”
  • “Improving the wiki”
  • “NethServer 7 Developments status”
  • specific people have to be involved, just 1-2
  • meeting should be scheduled suiting participants needs (respecting timezone and office hours)
  • the meeting have to contain an official part (always recorded and summarize) based on the chosen topic and maybe a relax part with generic chit-chat.

Let give me some examples:

We need just to see what time would work better for the few participants, choosing from a small list of dates, others can just watch the meeting in real-time or the recording later.

Plus, we can test in the meantime another different platform like Blab, do you know it yet? It would permit us to

  • enable viewers to text-chat in real-time with participants, questions and greetings are welcomed
  • chat and questions are recorded with the video as well
  • use also facebook and twitter accounts, not just google
  • download video and audio to publish it afterward everywhere: podcasts, youtube,
  • subscribe a meeting as viewer and be notified of its beginning by email or browser notifications, all in realtime.

Icing on the cake, it’s very very easy to use! More info:

These are my opinions here but really I’m curious to hear all of yours.

Who want to help me to test this new platform and see if it suits our needs? Today or tomorrow?


Sound good to me :slight_smile:

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Tomorrow me and @robb are going to test Blab, do you want to join us? @Hunv @Jim @vhinzsanchez @WillZen @giacomo @syntaxerrormmm
This is the link, meeting is scheduled at 10 AM CEST

You can also subscribe and chat without audio/video

Would love to, but I would be onsite (with all the other people from BgLUG) at the last laboratory we installed our solution, to cope with the last fixes needed. Sorry guys :frowning:

Sorry, can’t again. Its going to be 4PM here in the Philippines and we are still on-work.

My apologies.

Your question isn’t clear if you consider the different time zone.
Do you mean 5th May or 6th May at 10am CEST?