GOC online networking in Zoom

New and different online events with the GOC Online group

After gathering weekly for online social events for around three months now, our new GOC Online group has attracted over 85 members and quite an enthusiastic and committed band of regular attenders.  They have shared many exciting ideas for new and different online events among GOC members, so it seemed that it would be a good idea to capture some of these by means of a short survey and take the opportunity to review and revise our pattern of events.  Thank you to the 26 who responded with valuable feedback and suggestions.

Scroll down to learn what those attending have appreciated about our online socials to date, what has deterred others from attending and what would encourage them to do so, and what other online events members are interested to attend or help to organise with GOC.

Please join us for our new Online Social in Zoom, now fortnightly on Thursday nights from from 7-8pm, starting next Thursday 12 May.  Keep any eye on our Online group page for additional new & different online events, and please let us know of your own ideas.

To join the group and receive updates of news and events, please go to My preferences and include Online in your selection of groups.

I hope to see you online soon, if not also outdoors!

Martin Gilbraith, Online group co-ordinator

GOC online events & online group survey - your feedback

Around half of the 26 respondents had attended online socials already, in Zoom or in Wonder or both, and about half had not.

What attendees appreciated about the online socials included:

  • meeting new people, learning about other groups events, sharing information, eg. navigating website
  • meeting up with members around the country, getting ideas from other groups, socialising
  • a chance to meet & chat with others around the country
  • being able to catch up with members met previously at other (particularly national) GOC events, and also the opportunity to speak with members based in parts of the UK which I may be interested in visiting in future
  • nice to see other members and socialise
  • just lovely to meet and chat after so long not being able to
  • a good chat, freedom of expression and exchange of ideas
  • a good intro to GOC, as the Zoom meet was my first event of any kind
  • linking up with fellow members that I wouldn't ordinarily have contact with, and passing on some basic info to brand new members in particular
  • I appreciate the initiative and a move into something GOC hasn't done in the past - new things are always cool and appreciated
  • relaxing, pleasant conversation.

Of those who had not already attended, half said that the reason was that the date or time was not convenient, and a third that they had not been not aware of them or they were not sure that they would be welcome or enjoy it. You will be welcome, and there is only one way to find out if you will enjoy it!  Only a few cited the technology as an obstacle.

The vast majority (21 of 26) agreed that they would be more likely to attend future online socials if they are held in Zoom instead of Wonder, so that is what we are doing now.

The most popular time slot for the online socials (for 10 of 26) was 7-8pm on Thursdays, so that is what we are doing now.  In fact 7-8pm was the most popular time regardless of the day of the week, and the next most popular days were Tuesdays then Mondays. There was very little interest in weekends or anything before 6pm.

What else would encourage or support members to attend a GOC online social included:

  • less frequent than every week - so we have now switched to every other week
  • occasional themed sessions, i.e. the AOG as we approach the date, an occasional online quiz - so now we have the weeks between socials available for occasional, additional themed events (see below for more ideas)
  • some idea of what’s talked about - so I have included a description of the format in the event description
  • knowing who else is likely to be attending - sadly the GOC website doesn't seem to allow bookings for recurring events, but if I find a way to fix that I will!
  • email reminders - these are available, see the member-only details on the event page Online Social in Zoom
  • more people participating - please join us if you haven't already, the more the merrier!

What other online events members would  be interested to attend or help to organise included:

  • sharing ideas / photos about walks they have done, trips they have been on - what are the best walks/GOC activities you have ever attended or what would be your dream walk and why?
  • "how to organise a walk" or "how to organise an event"
  • presentations, quizzes, demonstrations, book clubs, music clubs, gardening clubs, skills training

Please let me know if you are interested to help organise an event along these lines, or if you have any other ideas of your own! Martin Gilbraith, Online group co-ordinator.

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