Monday, December 31, 2007

Year In Review

Some readers here don't know I also write on ActiveRain, a real estate professional community and blog network with a devoted core of participants. Here's a review I published on ActiveRain:

ActiveRain Year In Review By Colleen Kulikowski
Wow what a year!
Significant ActiveRain Events 2007

"Year In Review" was a great idea by Jennifer Fivelsdal as a combined effort of several Active Rain Members. To find other posts in this series, please check out the ActiveRain 2007 Year In Review group.

Significant ActiveRain Events in 2007:
We end 2007 on a joyous note. Monkia McGillicuddy had a dream, the best things in life always start with a dream. She had a dream one night and woke up inspired to write a post right here on ActiveRain to her husband Jay's birth mother in an attempt to find her; and made that happen in just a few days. We here at ActiveRain are passing around the tissue box with joy at the best Christmas gift ever. Never underestimate the power of a woman on a mission or that of ActiveRain. A letter to my husband's birth mother...wherever you are We look forward to hearing the results - Finding my birth mother after 53 1/2 years .
There were many great events that happened here at ActiveRain in 2007. The most significant event in 2007 is the connection we made with each other. The resulting ActiveRain gatherings around the country which followed are very memorable; we flew all over the country just to meet each other! It was my pleasure to be part of the get together in Celebration Florida, Lunch in Atlanta and the AR 1st Birthday Party in Orlando. What an experience to finally meet new found friends and really get to know them one-on-one, it was wonderful. Many members feel that these get togethers were the most significant events of 2007. Which post to select? Can't do it! There are so many wonderful gathering posts. Go see for yourself at ActiveRain Gatherings.
Can we ever forget the Predictions from Carnac for 2007? We wait with baited breathe for the 2008 predictions.... Each month the membership pounds their collective feet waiting as Linda Davis "Carnac" review the blunders in the Rain. Always guaranteed to entertain...and make us laugh out loud!

The next significant Active Rain Event was the introduction of the Moderators. Mark Flanders, Laurie Manny, Rich Jacobson and myself all known to everyone here on ActiveRain as The Moderators. I think Linda Davis still has a stash of dart boards, voodoo dolls and the like if anyone is interested. I would share the names of the Hidden Moderators, but I like breathing too much to disclose here. Anyone wonder why? Matt Heaton, gentleman that he is, decided to thank the Moderators personally - each and every one of us! Somebody forgot to tell him we were a secret. A truly lovely much for the secret.

When considering the Significant ActiveRain Events of 2007, it was just not possible to narrow it down to a short list of posts for any of these events. Groups became a very important aspect of life around ActiveRain in 2007; so it seems fitting that the groups are highlighted.

Many of these events involved an array of posts from a wide variety of writers, it made more sense to highlight the many groups (and in some instances the TAG we used to identify it) for these significant events:

Active Rain Newbies and the friendly Welcome Wagon – A newbie manual to Active Rain post that every new member should read. As one of the first 1,000 members (Member 691 Welcomes the 20,000th Member) one of the most wonderful things to witness was watching members "Pay it Forward" to the next set of new members. In the early days there were, on a busy day, 10 new posts; we were a smaller more intimate group where everyone had the opportunity to get to know each other. At times it was intimidating. Here I am discussing how scary it was with a mere 1,000 members -- we are now at over 63,000 members, can you even imagine being a new member today? Early on Blanca Cholewczynski, and Karen Hurst started the Welcome Wagon and helped new members feel welcome around the Rain. ActiveRain Newbies is one of the most active groups in AR.

WEEK IN REVIEW - It was overwhelming Moderating and trying to keep the Week In Review going at the same time; not able to do it all, Neal Bloom gladly agreed to take over the responsibility of recruiting volunteer writers of the week in Review. Neal has done a phenomenal job, this one's not easy folks! Thank you Neal!

Laurie Manny Challenge- Folks there are times that writers just get in a rut. At the time of this challenge, the Network was in a HUGE rut, the boys were pressuring us to find real estate related posts to feature and they just weren't there. Sometimes we just need to explore to find inspiration and fresh material. This challenge inspired the membership to do just that.

Fraiche Aire - ever need a positive uplift -- just visit this group! Lola Audu has done an amazing job here!

Meme's! - They actually started in 2006, continued into 2007 and have become a part of our culture. As each new group of members join ActiveRain, Meme's continue on providing us with a source to find out a little bit more about each other! Our own Lucky Lang's classic post, Meme tutorial and alphabetical index of all Memes on Active Rain, is a dedicated work in progress containing links to every known Meme on ActiveRain. Thank you Lucky!

Project Blogger -- ActiveRain took on a challenge and created a contest, Project Blogger. Take 12 New Bloggers, team them with experienced Bloggers and watch their development over a 12 week period. Give them challenges, have the Coaches write about their experiences and everyone benefited from the experience. All for a good cause, the winning team's favorite charity got a check for $5,000. Winning Blogger Mary Pope-Handy, and Coach Frances Flynn Thorsen, theRealtyGram.

Blog Tour USA - "The Summer of Love!" Joe & Rudy from the Sellsius Blog, rented a bus and took a little tour around the country meeting many ActiveRain members along the way. What a great networking experience. Read Also: Top 12 Women Real Estate Bloggers - 2007 Edition

Active Rain Flat Stanley Project - The "Flat Gods" were created and sent around the RAIN in an effort to get the members to start writing about their local areas. By using the "Flat Gods" members were suddenly freed of their fears and could comfortably write about their areas, by way of the Flat's adventures. Some of the posts are hysterical. Flat Ben and Flat Laurie's time's with Broker Bryant and TLW are legendary, and a bit frightening! That TLW has got some wild imagination going on!

Social Networking would not be complete without the countless Carnivals, Contests & Blogging Events that you can read up on!

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