Aug 13 2006

Web Crossing participation choices

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How closely do you want to follow a discussion?

Web Crossing gives you some tools that, in combination, let you chose the level of participation in one or more discussions. The choices described here apply at the folder level (so that all subordinate folders and discussions inherit the choices you make) or at the level of an individual discussion. In order of increasing levels of involvement, here is how I set Web Crossing options for increasing levels of participation:

  1. I ignore discussions I’m not interested in and, if appropriate, I go browse them later or use the search function to find discussions that are interesting. I have no compunction about jumping in and posting a question or a comment if I’m interested. (I do, however, feel obligated to be more involved, at least to respond to follow-on comments, once I post something in a discussion.)
  2. I subscribe with “check messages” so that Web Crossing keeps track of the messages that I have or have not read. I subscribe this way to discussions that are of possible or occasional interest.
  3. I scan an area using the Index to get an overview of the whole before jumping in to any specific discussions. The Index shows the number of messages in a discussion and the number that I’ve read.
  4. I subscribe to the email digest (and set the time at which I want Web Crossing to generate the digests as described below. I subscribe this way to discussions that I’m involved with but not responsible for facilitating.
  5. I subscribe by email, so that Web Crossing sends me an email message as soon as anybody posts something. Since I have email open almost all the time, I’m immediately alerted to the fact that the discussion is moving forward. I subscribe this way to discussions that I’m facilitating or that I’m depending upon for an answer to a problem I’m trying to solve.
Here is a snapshot of the check-boxes where you can choose what level of email subscription you want. You get here by by clicking on the “Subscribe” or “change Subscription” button in a discussion or folder.

It’s key to have Web Crossing send the full posting rather than just the header so I can scan the actual text in my email in-box. There’s a preferences check-box that controls which kind of announcement Web Crossing will send.

Subscription choicesWeb Crossing subscription choices
You can control the times of day at which Web Crossing prepares a digest. I have selected three times during the day that fit nicely with my work schedule: just before I get up, in the middle of the morning, and just before the end of my work day.

Sometimes I have only one digest produced on weekend days. Sometimes I set the schedule to run the digest only once or twice a week.

Digest scheduleScheduling the Web Crossing digest

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