Self-introduction Mad Libs: because it’s SCIENCE!

February 27, 2010 – 7:55 am

In a little less than 2 hours, the Marketing Team refactored the self-introduction portion of its Join process to be (we hope) more newcomer-friendly. We did this by applying Mad Libs. For science. *little trumpet fanfare!* Actually, we don’t know if it’ll work, or if it actually is an improvement – that’s why we’d love thoughts and feedback.

Basically, the idea is that this…

  • Full legal name (as you use it is fine)
  • City, Country; you may use your timezone if you have a compelling reason not to specify your city or country
  • Profession or Student status
  • Company, School, or other affiliation
  • Your goals in the Fedora Project

…can be made a lot friendlier to newcomers looking for a template email by reformatting it as something like this:

Hi, my name is _________________ and I live in _______________ (location or timezone). My Fedora Account System (FAS) username is __________, and my IRC nick is __________. (OR: I am new to IRC and would like help getting started!)

How this happened: Robyn found an article on how alternative form formats increase sign-ups; this hit IRC and the Marketing list in quick suggestion, whereupon Justin said that “we could also make an introduction madlib, because I don’t know about everyone else but I felt really uneasy about mine.” A few minutes later, Robyn, Justin, Nelson, and I were editing away in Etherpad – the video of edits is fun to watch as people hop in and things start to snowball (look at the bottom of the document the entire time). Afterwards, I tried rewriting my self-introduction with the new template, and found that I did like the Mad Libs version better, but I’m not the best judge on whether something’s actually helpful to new Marketing contributors at this point. ;-)


The revised introduction template, mid-revision. I’m yellow, Justin is green, Robyn is pink, and Nelson isn’t here yet.

If you have a moment, take a look at the old, bulleted-list version, compare it to the new, Mad Libs version, and let us know what you think.

Know someone who'd appreciate this post?
  • Print
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Identi.ca

What do you think?