NPCA Launches #rpcvchat on Twitter
By Erica Burman on Thursday, June 9th, 2011
Every Friday at 12:00 noon (EST), Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, soon-to-be-RPCVs and future RPCVs from all over the world are invited to gather on Twitter to take part in global #rpcvchat. This new real-time forum will allow participants to connect, ask questions, and share resources, ideas and experiences as we help each other through the special challenges of returning home. If Peace Corps people are involved, expect it to be fun, invigorating and inspiring! We invite you to give it a whirl.
What Topics Are Discussed?
We want to discuss topics that interest the RPCV community! To get started, we’ve brainstormed a list of topics with some RPCVs and soon-to-be-RPCVs but can envision in future a mechanism to poll the Peace Corps community “twitterati.” We’ll announce the week’s topic via Twitter a few days before the chat.
How Do I Participate?
If you’re new to Twitter and/or have never experienced a Twitter chat, please know it’s quite easy to participate.
- Enter #rpcvchat into the subject search box (http://search.twitter.com) and then save that search. You’ll see a stream of all the tweets relating to #rpcvchat. It’s that simple. You can also try out www.TweetChat.com (enter in #rpcvchat to participate) or manage your Tweets through www.TweetDeck.com.
- When you’re ready to jump in and say something about the topic being discussed and/or respond to a tweet or post, just include the “hashtag” #rpcvchat at the beginning or end of your tweet. If you’re using TweetChat, you don’t have to worry about adding the #rpcvchat; it does it for you.
The chat will go roughly as follows: intros and hellos (5 min.), chat about the topic (50 min.), chance to pitch your blog, cause, project etc. (because doesn’t every RPCV have one of those? – 5 min.)
Do You Have Any Tips?
- Be considerate of others during the chat. You are free to disagree, but let’s be respectful and demonstrate politeness and courtesy for differing opinions.
- It may take a while to get accustomed to following the stream of #rpcvchat tweets. Be patient with yourself and others. It can be fast-paced at times. Eventually, you’ll get the hang of it!
- Feel free to ask questions and/or share real-world experiences.
- If you want to direct a reply to someone, simply start off your tweet with that person’s @username (Example:@pcorpsconnect …..).
- Simultaneously, it’s a good idea to search for your own @username a few times throughout the chat to ensure you catch any responses directed to you. It’s easy to do this if you save a search for your own @username.
- If you agree with what someone posts, feel free to “Retweet” (RT) it. (Example: RT …..)
- Be sure your Twitter profile settings are on public not private; otherwise, you won’t show up in the chat feed.
If you have questions, topic suggestions and/or would like to serve as a resource/expert on a potential #rpcvchat subject, please email Erica Burman, Director of Communications or Molly Mattessich, Manager of Online Initiatives. They will do their best to respond as quickly as possible.
Also, here are some excellent instructions on how to participate in Twitter Chats.
NOTE: Check out the post, Why I Think Everyone Should Join RPCV Chat.