Monday, November 1, 2010

What is an ASMR Outreach Agent?

Okay, so you might know by now that I am a member of the ASMR Research Team. I also have the title of Outreach Agent.

So what is an Outreach Agent and what does he or she do exactly?

Outreach means to reach out; to be involved within the community. There are Outreach Agents on several continents as of right now.  Domagoj is the OA for Europe, Torsten is the OA for Australia/Oceania, and I am the OA for Africa. At one stage we had an OA for the Eastern United States, but unfortunately he left the team.

As time progresses, hopefully other continents will receive their own Outreach Agents, and from there maybe even individual countries will have their own.

But seeing as the community is entirely online right now, one might argue that the locations of where Outreach Agents are situated doesn’t really matter. This might be true, but there are advantages to having people from all over the world representing the community and network. For one, those who are fluent in more than one language can communicate with people who speak the same language.

I for one can speak English (which is my mother tongue or home language), as well as Afrikaans (which is similar to Dutch or German). This means in addition to this I also have limited understanding of these other languages because of the similarities between them.

Dom is fluent in English and German, and I’m assuming Croatian and/or Serbian, seeing as he’s from that part of the world, from what he’s told us.

So anyhow, it hasn’t come to communicating in other languages for now, but it could be a possibility in the future. It might even prompt us to learn other languages. It’s been an interest of mine to learn German or Italian. Something European, maybe even French or Spanish – the “big two”.

Not every one who experiences ASMR speaks English anyway, even though it’s an international language. For this reason, I’ve put a translation tool on the blog which will assist in drawing people from abroad in. A large focus at present is on America, Canada, and England at the moment – and these are largely English speaking territories.

As for our online duties, we basically comb the web for threads on forums and websites, blogs, and so on, looking for interested parties who might join the community. Even though the community is getting larger, it’s still got a long way to go yet.

Once we find a forum, we check to see if they’ve been able find anything on ASMR, and if not, then we will network, by leaving comments with links back to a network site, or sending private messages, etc. We’re encouraged to participate within the community as well as bringing in fresh blood from the outside. Think of it as Public Relations.

Other duties performed by an Outreach Agent could include having a blog like I do. I also have a YouTube channel, as well as Twitter and Facebook accounts. Social networking is a must basically.

Outreach Agents, in addition to participating in the forums, also having moderator permissions. For instance, I imported threads from FB and the SOS Yahoo group into the forums. Anybody can do this though. But I also have the ability to delete posts, lock threads, ban repeated offenders who break the forum rules, and so on.

So, this has given you an idea of what an Outreach Agent does within the ASMR network and community. If you’re interested in representing a continent, country, or area of sorts, then contact us, or leave a comment here with your details.

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