I suppose the topic may be to broad with the global coverage for iNat but would it not make sense to have an Community Events category. A place to post bioblitzes, walks, talks, lectures. I can see where it may bog down the servers but perhaps if they had an expiration date of 2 days after the event, it could help keep it clean. Just a thought.
We talked about that a little when discussing whether to have a non-iNat related category (now #nature-talk)
I’d really like this as well. It’s very hard to find out about events I’d like to go to until after they’ve happened. I feel like I miss out on a lot of cool stuff I’d have liked to help with.
I’m a bit hesitant because I could see it just becoming a cacophony of postings, most of which would not be relevant to the majority of people here. But perhaps my pessimism is misplaced. Might be worth a shot if topic titles use a template that include a few place names. Like if I wanted to host a bioblitz in Oakland the title should be something like “Lake Merritt Bioblitz, 1 August 2019 - Oakland, California” so that anyone searching for a California event or an Oakland event would be able to find it relatively easily…
The idea is very cool. To me it sounds like a full-blown site feature than a simple forum category. For such a thing to be functional, it seems like evernts would need to be extensively sorted by location. In my imagination that ends up like some kind of index of calendars, not at all something the forum programming could make. But then again we need normal users to be able to write the event listing and descriptions, which is forum-like. Hmm.
I can see what you mean about it getting confusing with too many posts. One forum I’ve seen lays out their event postings like this:
Main Events category > subcategory for each continent
Inside the subcategories, a very strict title format is enforced, usually [Country] [state or region] [city] [title] [date]. So your example would be in subfolder Americas, titled [US][CA][Oakland] Lake Merritt Bioblitz [Aug 1 2019]
Of course, the downside is that it requires a fair bit of moderating to get people to actually follow posting guidelines. So I don’t know how practical it’d be for this forum.
I would personally mute an events category. It would take up too much of my attention for too little potential benefit.
It’s fairly easy to find out who the active iNatters are in an area, you simply search observations near it and then go to the observers tab. It is also easy to bulk tag from a journal post or to direct message them if the list is small enough, so from the event organisers point of view it can be done fairly easily.
From the participants point of view, it is not so easy. If iNat projects are created with enough lead in time, maybe there is a way to search projects that are based on a location nearby?
It would be terrific to have an events component in iNat, or to be able to make projects that are set as events behave in such a way, that they create an alert if the place is within a given distance that i specify that I would like alerts for. So for example, I could set my preference for obtaining alerts of events within 300km, and any event based project created that has a place within that distance would auto generate an alert to me. Perhaps tie it to actual iNat places, so that in the same way that we get alerts for taxa that we watch, we would get the alerts for places that we watch. I could set a watch on Gisborne, on North Island NZ, or New Zealand and get alerts of event projects that are created with those places assigned.