Influencing Markets Through Air Mozilla and Designing for Participation

Last week, during a student affairs meeting at San Francisco State University, the committee members were asked for input on the general education redesign. I championed the idea that the design students should be engaged in helping design a better experience for students – it’s a winning combo of student and design perspectives. The committee and administrator really liked the idea and I volunteered to help make it happen.

I then found myself in the interesting position of needing to teach a college administrator how to work with a design team. This connecting of seemingly separate parts of an organization is a place I thrive. But I needed teaching tools beyond what I knew so that I could teach beyond my personal reach – I needed stuff that could be shared within the administration and used without my needing to be there. working with creative team cover So I compiled some of my work along with this video by John Slater about how to work with the Creative Team at Mozilla. The video also offers a link to a wiki page with templates.

I didn’t think about it at the time but then it hit me: this is one way Mozilla influences markets. The openness of information about the organization provides tools for people to learn from. Mozilla influences others by the way in which it does things and then shares that. Air Mozilla is one of the platforms that allows this sharing. The result is something completely unexpected like the Creative Team’s video influencing how the administration at San Francisco State University operates. Incredible! This is why open source knowledge is important.

Taking this a step further, this is also an example of how Mozilla designs for participation. While using an Air Mozilla video as a teaching tool is not contributing some major tangible piece to a Mozilla project per se, this acts as a first entry point for people to later become a larger part of the Mozilla community. Designing for participation here means having open entry points.

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