I have been thinking about setting up a dedicated web site for quite some time. Something like couchsurfing, but more Drupal focused.
Some people might ask.. Why don't you just create a group on g.d.o, or how about a forum? Or why don't I just simply refer to the registered user profiles on d.o to find people to connect with?
Although travellers might be able to connect somehow through a threaded group or a forum, there are at least 3 drawbacks by relying on a forum as a vehicle for connecting people:
Drawback #1. Forums are streams of content. You need to check regularly or subscribe.
Drawback #2. Scalability. Imagine having 20 people post about their travel plans in a forum. That's manageable. Now imagine 200 or 2000..
Drawback #3. It's hard to get a full overview of a person unless you follow all their forum postings
All these drawbacks are solved by creating a separate web site centred around 3 areas:
- Centered around people and their interests
- Centered around travel
- Centered around connections
The web site should cater
- Safety mechanisms (you need to trust the person on the other end)
- Privacy (some people may be okay about posting their entire travel itinerary whereas others may like to share it only with their friends)
- Overview (easy to find people, see availability, what's happening locally)
So let's say we create a web site, what do we call it?
Personally I think it would be best if we get more people into this group, gather creative ideas and have a vote for the best name. I don't want to pick an arbitrary cool name that I happen to like, it should be a community decision :) At the same time, a (domain) name is important so we should also have a good reason behind the name we choose.
Hope to hear your further opinions on this..