A little Spring cleaning over on the Portland Startups Slack

I’m the first to admit it. I let the Portland Startups Slack get a little messy over the years. Like that drawer. In the kitchen. You know the one. So recently, in a fit of wild inspiration born of Spring cleaning and some other Slack instances I frequent, I decided to do something about it.

I’ve reorganized things a bit in an effort to make our community Slack instance more welcoming… and intelligible. I’m also currently going through and consolidating — or completely archiving — channels in an effort to draw more communication, collaboration, and community collisions into an active series of channels, rather than sprinkling that across a variety of hard to discover and mostly quiet — if not completely dead — channels.

So now, the most used channels on the Slack instance have a number associated with their name. Why? For new users, this gives them a clear indication of where to start interacting. For existing users, it gives them the ability to clear out some of their favorites so that they can use them for other channels. (Honestly, I hated that the “#intro” channel was buried midway through the list of channels. It made it difficult for new users to find it and use it. And most existing users wouldn’t glance at it to meet new people, because it wasn’t top of mind.)

What if there are channels that aren’t active enough to get a number but they’re still valuable channels? I’m not throwing everything away. Over the years, I’ve seen some channels that have bursts of activity, off and on. But they’re not used day-to-day. For those channels, I’ve categorized them under a broader topic like “startup_”, “social_”, and “events_”. It may just be a Jedi mind trick, but it seems to make finding the topics I’m searching for easier. I hope it does the same for you.

All in all, not earth shattering news, I realize. But I am happy to report that these simple changes have already resulted in a marked improvement in activity and engagement. Hoping this new taxonomy helps both new users and old get more value out of our community — and communal — Slack instance.

For more information or to visit, head over to Portland Startups Slack.