IABC members can join the conversation

An email yesterday from IABC brought news of a new member benefit – The IABC eXchange.

In development for some while, this new resource offers a great opportunity to introduce every IABC member to blogs and blogging.

According to IABC, though, it’s much more than simply an application for writing blog posts:

The IABC eXchange is an online tool for networking and collaboration. Developed based on member feedback, the IABC eXchange allows you to create member-only discussion groups, private working groups and blogs that the whole world can view and comment on. You have the power to designate who can join your conversation: Grant co-author access to fellow members, allow others to submit entries which require your approval to be posted or make it your own personal platform for sharing your ideas and opinions. The IABC eXchange also lets you create a personal profile, including a photo and information about your areas of interest, to help you connect with your fellow members.

Based on WordPress MU, the multi-user version of WordPress, setting up your own place in The IABC eXchange is very easy.

So easy, in fact, that I’ve set one up myself, which took me less than five minutes.

One thought I had was would this new member benefit lead to diminished use of long-established online resources such as the IABC Memberspeak discussion forum, or IABC Buzz, the more informal chat place.

Hard to tell, but I don’t see why that should necessarily be the case. Much will depend on what IABC members do with all the choices.

And perhaps that’s the real beauty of what’s now happening online for IABC members – they are the ones in control of the conversations, and which resources they want to use.

A lot of thought (and testing) has clearly gone into The IABC eXchange, judging from the well-written help screens, dialogs and video tutorials you see, meaning that even the most blog-novice IABC member will be able to set up his or her own blog in a matter of minutes.

If you’re an IABC member, you can get started here.

Well done, IABC!