Tag Archives: Feedback Loop

Getting started: Hints and tips

Slack

 

We have decided to use Slack as our primary communication tool for Feedback Loop.

Slack is a great little application that supports a wide range of operating systems and mobile devices, and gives us the ability to create team-wide communication channels, share files, and message privately, all free of charge.

Read on for some notes about Feedback Loop, and about Slack. Please consider making the changes below, and help us to build a better feedback collective <3

Make sure Slack is letting you know what’s happening

In its default state, the only way for Feedback Loop members to be made aware of new feedback requests is if they happen to have the Slack app open. This is obviously less than ideal. We want members to be able to make feedback requests, and receive that feedback in a timely fashion.

A great feature of Slack is that notification preferences are channel-specific. This means that if we ensure that the feedback-requests channel notifies everyone for every post, we’ll all be aware of requests as they arrive. It also means that the feedback-requests channel should ONLY be used for creating new feedback requests.

To solve this, go into your slack settings for the feedback-requests channel…1-menu

…and make the following selections

2-notification settings

If, however, you don’t want a bunch of new notifications, it would be a good idea to set up some sort of reminder, prompting you to open the app and see what requests are pending.

Be active in the community

Feedback Loop will only be effective if its community is responsive! If you have ever received feedback that has helped you to grow, please return the favour in kind by making your time and expertise available to others that need it.

Remember that the #general and #random channels are there for chat about anything and everything, and can be a great place to collaboratively come up with new ideas for Feedback Loop. Let’s be pals!

Feedback Loop isn’t just for writers, channels can be created and archived with relative ease, so if anyone would like to make use of channels for art, games, photography, or anything else, just let us know! Send a direct message in the app, or send an email to info@feedbackloop.in.

Please keep unpublished work private

Slack is a closed community, but entry requirements are not stringent. Please remember that any unpublished work posted to any of the channels can be viewed by everyone on the team, and could be made public if someone decided to breach our trust.

If the work you require feedback on is sensitive in nature, please ensure that it is shared privately, and not on any of the team channels. Post your feedback request, noting that you have work that needs looking at, and only share the work with the individuals that offer to help. Remind them (in writing) that the work is private, and have them agree to keep it that way.

Remember Slack’s local clients

There are local clients for Slack available for Windows, MacOS, iOS and Android, and a Windows Phone app is on the way. The mobile clients allow you to switch from email activity notifications to mobile notifications, which may be more convenient for you.

Give us feedback on our feedback collective!

If you have any suggestions for how Feedback Loop could be improved, on the tool we’ve chosen, or if would like to let us know what you like about the collective, please send an email to info@feedbackloop.in,

Announcing: Feedback Loop

Feedback Loop

High quality feedback is hard to find, no matter the creative endeavour. In my capacity as a freelance writer, I’ve been a part of many a frustrated conversation with my peers about the fact that no matter where we turn, the feedback we receive is either wholly negative, or cursory at best.

These conversations happen with such regularity that we began to dub them “Freelancer Support Group,” and it occurred to us that it would be valuable if we were to put together a community of like-minded creators seeking truly valuable feedback.

The trouble with the feedback that we usually receive is that it tends to take one of three forms:

  1. Online comments – for the most part, these are either vitriolic morsels of hate, or positive but perfunctory acknowledgements.
  2. Responses from editors – Generally the most positive feedback we receive from editors is simply that they publish our stories with few to no changes. Aside from that, it’s either short rejections, or sweeping changes. This isn’t their fault, it a fact of the compressed time that comes with the job, but it doesn’t do much to help a writer to improve themselves.
  3. Feedback from family and friends – “Good job,” and “great post,” are positive responses, but ultimately all they really tell us is that they read the post. Honest or not, family and friends have a social obligation to positively respond to your creative work, which makes it hard to view it as a source of edification.

Feedback Loop was built as a response to this, a collective of creatives that believe that our current social framework for feedback is broken, who wish to enter into an environment where feedback is open, honest, and focused on building people up, not breaking them down.

Members of Feedback Loop understand that positive feedback is a key part of responding to a piece of creative work. It isn’t a tool to help soften the blow of the the more ‘important,’ ‘valuable,’ or ‘necessary’ negative feedback, but rather it is key to helping people to improve. We hold fast to the truth that positive feedback directly leads to creatives being able to positively assess themselves and their own work, to know their strengths, and to learn how to cater to them.

The simple way to do this is to ensure that when you’re giving positive feedback, you don’t just tell the creator that you liked their work, but why. Tell them what exactly it is about their creation that you enjoy, what it made you feel, what it taught you, how it suits the form they’ve chosen. Anything that occurs to you.

Negative feedback will certainly continue to exist — it’s important that we also ensure that people are helped to identify their missteps, but it will not be the cornerstone of the collective.

Most importantly, Feedback Loop is a safe space for creatives to make themselves vulnerable to their peers. It’s a community in which feedback is delivered with the sole purpose of helping its members to better themselves.

If you would like to join Feedback Loop, please send an email to info@feedbackloop.in, and we’ll ensure that you’re added to the tool that we use to facilitate communication. Come join us, and help us make feedback something to celebrate, not to fear.

Header artwork by the incredible @buzz_clik. Go and give HIM some wonderful, life-giving feedback.