Nanaimo residents can bend city’s ear with new online forum

Municipality has created Get Involved Nanaimo public engagement site

The city is lending its ear online for residents on a new public engagement site.

Get Involved Nanaimo is a platform, hosted by Bang the Table, that offers features for residents to provide their feedback, share ideas, collaborate and learn about city programs and initiatives in a “safe and constructive environment,” according to a city press release issued Tuesday.

The site’s features include chat forums, surveys, brainstorming tools and question-and-answer sections and 24/7 moderation to ensure comments and conversations follow the platform’s usage terms.

“I think it’s actually one of the better ways to gather online input and engagement from the public,” said Coun. Don Bonner. “It’s through a much more moderated and safer environment for people making comments, people reading comments, and I think it will give the public an opportunity to have a more fulsome conversation about all the topics.”

The city says the new engagement tool can provide an alternative for residents to have a voice in civic affairs without attending open houses or speaking up at council meetings. Bonner said he thinks it can offer something different from more familiar social media platforms.

“It’s not linear like Facebook where one comment knocks the next one down. [There will be] an opportunity for good ideas to surface to the top,” Bonner said.

The City of Nanaimo website’s community engagement page now includes a direct link to Get Involved Nanaimo, plus links to other ways residents can engage with the city.

The site is live and, as part of the launch, the city has set up pages where people can share their favourite things about living in Nanaimo, spark up conversations and share ideas.

To learn more and sign up to try out the platform, visit www.getinvolvednanaimo.ca.



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