Hi @bbfrederick, @emdupre, @Remi-Gau
Thanks for the question and ping. I agree with most that has been said (no surprise :D). I can add that I agree it should be possible for a team of the size that you mention, especially if it’s a short-ish symposium (1 day?).
I can add some ideas about platforms to choose from:
- Crowdcast is great if you want the ability to follow a predetermined schedule, have max 4 people on screen at any given time, have very interactive real-time discussions via text, and have the ability to live stream to another outlet such as Youtube.
- If you have access to a Zoom business account, that can also work nicely depending on the size of the audience (I think it can take up to something like 300 guests, but I’m unsure about this). Zoom is not great for live chatting compared to Crowdcast, IMO, but the breakout room functionality is nice if that is something that’s important.
- Discord (free) is something that’s becoming more popular as a text-based, asynchronous setup which might be useful for hackathon type events. It also has the ability to do voice calls and video calls, although IMO the two options above are better suited for that.
- Gather.town is great for social interaction, but if it’s a small event where most people will interact via video or chat in any case, it could be a bit unnecessary
So i think its important to decide early on what type of event you want it to be - more discussions, or more presentations, or more hacky stuff - and that should guide your decision about the platforms.
Lastly, about designing for inclusion. Setting up the technical and organisational infrastructure to allow for inclusivity is important, as per @emdupre’s suggestions of hub-based schedule or streaming to a free service, and asking low or no registration fees. Additionally I think it’s very important to spend time beforehand reaching out to people in the community who have expertise on the topic but who may have been or are being excluded or who will increase the diversity of participants. I think this is especially great to do for something like a panel discussion on an interesting or controversial topic, so that the voices that are heard on that topic are diverse.
There’s a lot more that I can think to say here, and a lot is also covered in the links that Remi provided, but perhaps you can let me know if something that I’ve mentioned here sparks interest, then I’ll be happy to add more context if needed.
Perhaps @smoia might want to share some thoughts as well, since he’s been actively involved in community efforts, brainhack organisation, and physio!