We all know that one of the features of the connected world is the ability to collaborate on projects. Colleagues near and far can now contribute as much and as deeply as those who sit next to you in the staffroom. Collaborating with people you’ve never met requires a certain level of trust.
A control freak like me is often challenged by this idea. Working with people in close proximity easily enables trust via familiarity and responsibility. Working with those you’ve never met, will never meet and those whose identities you’re not really sure of can be scary.
But recently I took the plunge. I’d been promoting the Pottermore wiki I’d developed to assist people navigate their way through the J.K. Rowling Pottermore website. I’d ask people to help me build it. But the crisis point came when two people asked for membership. I didn’t know them. But I took the plunge that they’d only want to join to help collaborate and build the wiki rather than to delete pages or hack the site. I supposed that I could always undo the changes if they were disastrous, but didn’t really want to even contemplate that.
Two months on, all is well. The wiki is still there and in fact it seems that nothing has been added by my two new collaborators. Which is a shame. I was looking forward to seeing their contributions. Oh well, maybe they’re just really busy.