There’s a really slick team collaboration software service called Slack that can provide this community with various chat rooms and further communication possibilities. It’s not a service that I can host on my own, but it’s an external service that you would have to register on.
If anything, we only use the free version of Slack which doesn’t have all the best features, but is really good enough for most purposes.
My idea is that we start with one Slack domain for the whole forum and if some project gets really big, then that project would set up its own Slack domain, so that people can focus on what’s really important for them.
Anyway, we might postpone the decision to use Slack until we are clear about how this community is called. Social Future or Fractal Future or something else.
What I can tell you is that Transpolitica uses Slack for its work on the book chapters and it was relatively helpful and fun.
Yes, this forum is a good base for ground work, but I think Slack has superior instant messaging and chat capabilities (there seems to be some work going on towards making a chat plug-in for Discourse, but it’s questionable whether it will be finished this year). And it seems to be more suited for intense focused teamwork than a forum. I think it would be optimal for each project to have its own Slack space, so that they can focus on their project work and collaboration there.
But it the very least, a global Slack for this community would be a nice chat room.
Well, of course we can experiment with dedicated tools for specific tasks. But I’m curious about what advantages you think Etherpad or Gobby have over Google Docs.