WORDS OF GRATITUDE
It has been an awesome one-week since the launch of the EPISTEM project. EPISTEM is a community oriented project which seeks to discover and reward quality contents on blurt, on topics that are related to Education, Psycology, Ingenuity (arts and poetry) and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).
You can read more about the community, it's goals, objectives and guidelines by checking our Introductory post
In this week, we have really found favour in the blurt community, and this favor has given us a reputable amount of support beyond my imagination, and for that I'm so grateful. Just this week alone, we came second on the #bpud contest hosted by @randula, and as a reward, we received delegations from @kamranrkploy (7000BP through @powerclub account) and @alejos7ven (3000 BP). My joy knew no bound when I received it, and I will be forever grateful to the delegators and @randula's for coming up with the initiative.
On a personal level, we also received delegations from @randula (5000 BP), @leifasaur (10,000 BP) and @yayogerardo (500 BP), who after they read the introductory post of the EPISTEM project believe in the project and out of their benevolence decided to delegate to the project. Also, I won't fail to mention @onchain-curator who hasn't failed to check up on the EPISTEM project to monitor our growth.
Honestly, I didn't know I will gain this amount of support in a short while, and when I saw it, I was out of words. To everyone, both the delegators and those who began to follow @epistem, i'm forever grateful.
I'm also thankful, to @geeklania the founder of the #Blurthispano curation project, @vickyguevara the founder of the #blurtlatam project, and @freakeao a witness on #Blurt for coming up with the #BlurtStartup initiative to support growing community project. It is my hope that the EPISTEM community benefits from it.
Considering the fact that the EPISTEM project has received so much from the members of the blurt community, I believe that it is right to give an evaluation of the progress the EPISTEM community has made so far. I will begin first by pointing out the challenges we faced within the week during the cause of curation.
CHALLENGES FACED SINCE WE BEGAN OPERATION
1. Very few authors write in the STEM, education and poetry niche
Although before the community was launched, I really took out time to study the blurt community to discover what is missing and the gaps that needs to be filled in the community; this week, I was opportuned to experience first hand these gaps personally as a curator.
If you check our curation reports for the past four days now curation report 1, curation report 2, curation report 3, curation report 4, you will observe a consistent pattern. There are works on art, psychology, a little poetry but it's very rare to find post related to science, technology, engineering, mathematics and education. I also observed that among the 8 areas of interest of the epistem project, the one with the most active participation and engagement is "art". This is no surprise, considering the works that communities like @r2cornell is doing in arts as well as other communities who have taken it upon themselves to encourage authors who post within that niche.
Although we have works on poetry, some are not much up to standard (I traced some to be as a result of translation from the local language to English). Even those that are of very high quality sometimes don't get the support they deserve. The lack of proper structure for these niche creates a bias, making it look like the blurt community doesn't support poetry or STEM related works. Having discovered this challenge, the EPISTEM project has designed a strategy to get more authors to write under these tags. This strategy includes but not limited to: encouraging and providing guidance through commenting, as well as upvote support for all authors that write within the 8 niches of the EPISTEM project. More about this will be explained later in this post.
The second challenge we faced during curation this week is the issue of tags. Although we curated a lot of contents, I must confess that it wasn't so easy scanning through all the amazing work published in the blurt community just to seek out publications that are within the niche of the EPISTEM community. I also tried searching using tag names, but very few current publications came out on the search.
In addition to this, many of the authors failed to include the relevant tags on their post, and that made it a little bit more complex to find their publication. Take for instance, there was a work on DIY (do it yourself) which is related to education, as it is an educative post, but when I checked it, I didn't find the "education" tag on it.
To ensure I didn't miss out on any publication that is within the niche of EPISTEM, I had to resort to opening each publication posted in blurt community one after the other, and that wasn't so easy, especially since the EPISTEM project is a niche-focused initiative.
Also, when I search for the #epistem tag, I couldn't find even a post under the tag. I know that with time, as the community grows, and we have more people posting using the #epistem tag, it will becoming visible on the search channel.
3. Misunderstanding of what EPISTEM niche is all about.
I remember upvoting an art-related post, and I also dropped a comment informing him that he can also use the #epistem tag in addition the #art tag while writing. The feedback I received from the author was that he writes only on art. This made me recognize the need to explain what a post that will be classified using the #epistem tag should look like; as an author will be required to use the #epistem tag as well as any other tag that is within the niche of the EPISTEM community as explained below.
#Education : education, publications like "do it yourself" (DIY), description of a learning process, tools used in learning, as well as every other thing related to education can be classified under this tag.
#Psychology: every work that relates to human relations as well as life can be classified under this tag.
#art : Under art tag, all arts including sketches, water paintings and drawings made electronically are classified under here.
#Science: all science-related works, including works on scientific adaptations made from nature, are classified under science tag.
#technology : all works that is technology-related are classified under the technology tag.
#engineering: engineering innovations and inventions as well as other engineering-relates works can be classified under the engineering tag.
#mathematics: Under the math tag, all works that is math-related are classified here.
4. Running out of Liquid Blurt
This was unexpected; but unfortunately I experienced it this week. The amount I allocated for carrying out community activities wasn't sufficient for the week. I ran out of liquid in the early hours of yesterday, and for that reason I couldn't reply any of the comments or mentions that I received yesterday, nor claim reward. Thanks to @zahidsun for coming to the rescue. Right now, I know better, and am sure such situation won't repeat itself in the future.
STRATEGIES THAT WE HAVE PUT IN PLACE IN OTHER TO SOLVE THE CHALLANGES LISTED ABOVE.
1. Setting up of a EPISTEM Discord community.
Currently in the blurt blog, members of the community can follow up on each other's progress through the use of #tags, as we can see with the #blurtlatam, #blurthispano e.t.c, and other established communities in the blurt platform. But since #epistem is a new tag, and it isn't among the first 10 tags in the blurt community yet, we decided to create a discord group that can comfortably contain the number of persons we have currently in the community, and the persons that will be joining us in the future.
You can join our discord community by clicking on the Epistem discord invite: https://discord.gg/Br9SbnPrdK
We have noticed some of the challenges some communities in the crypto social space have in terms of curation and in guiding new authors in the community and mentoring them into producing better content. Because of that, we decided to sectionalize the community to ensure that even the least amongst us will not be left out.
Here is a screenshot of how the community looks like. By clicking on the Discord Invite, you are automatically directed into our welcome room. In this room, the rules guiding the EPISTEM community is listed out. This is shown below.
We also have a subgroup called the complaint room, where anyone who feels he/she is not treated fairly, can bring his/her complaints to the moderators.
While setting up the promotional channel, at first, I intended on creating just a single promotional channel for all works that are related to the EPISTEM project, but after some consideration, I saw the need to create individual channels for each of the EPISTEM niche. Apart from the fact that the promotional channels makes it easier to discover the several works published under the #epistem (as every member of the EPISTEM community is allowed to drop their post on the promotional channel for curation), I felt that it will be easier to learn and grow as an author in any of these fields if it he/she can easily have access to works published by other authors in the community within his/her preferred niche.
Thus, a person who writes under #poetry can post his works for curation/promotion under the epistem-poetry promotional channel, and once his/her work fulfils the conditions explained in the guidelines of the introductory post, he or she is assured of their work being curated.
Apart from the post promotion initiative, an author can visit any of the promotional channels, e.g the epistem-poetry promotional channel to check out poetry publications from other authors, and from them improve on his own works. This is shown in the screenshot below.
We also saw the need to add another channel in the EPISTEM discord community which is the "hangout channel". If you check most of the general rooms in discord, you will observe that there is no flow of a singular topic. The members can be discussing more than one topic at the same time; it can be confusing. By creating a hangout room for each of the niche, authors who write within that niche can meet up and learn from each other on ways to become better content creators.
2. Advertising our works and the blurt platform on social media platform like twitter.
Still on the avenues of making sure that we recognise as much published work as possible, while at the same time creating awareness of the blurt community across social media platforms, the EPISTEM community has began to encourage it's members to publish/advertise their work as well as create awareness of blurt on their social media pages.
Considering the fact that the Twitter platforms is very easy to use, the EPISTEM community has adopted the Twitter platform as their social media platform for advertising blurt as well as the author's publications.
The format for the tweet should be:
"Topic of your publication"
"Link of the publication".
BENEFITS OF THE EPISTEM PROJECT TO THE BLURT COMMUNITY
Already, we all sense the absence of a STEM community on the blurt community, and within this week, the EPISTEM has given an effort to fill in this gap, but I believe much work will be done. Below are the benefits which the EPISTEM project has began to offer the blurt community.
EPISTEM project is setting up a community that supports and fosters ingenuity and interest in education, psychology, art, poetry and STEM among writers in Blurt.
We will help raise the quality of education, psychology, STEM, art and poetry contents on the blurt blog, by mentoring, encouraging and supporting authors that write on those subjects.
Also, we will help increase the rate of communication and discussion amongst authors in the Blurt community by encouraging engagement on each other's post.
The vision for the EPISTEM Project is a dynamic one; it grows consistently as the day goes by. I believe that the project will keep growing at a steady pace, just as it has started. To make sure that we keep to the goals and objectives of the community, aside from the daily curation report, we will publish a community review like this one every Friday, to keep every member of the EPISTEM community, as well as the blurt community as a whole abreast of our progress so far.
If you believe in the project, and that it will help promote and grow the blurt community, you can send in your delegations to the @epistem account. Also follow invite other authors whose works are related to the EPISTEM objectives to use the #epistem tag. Please, join us on our community discord group by clicking on this Discord Invite.
Thank you @everyone for your support. I recognize that we won't be here without you. I believe that together we can utilize all the potentials the EPISTEM project has to offer. Cheers to that.