This is a story about Yuri:

I had a great conversation with our community manager, Dan, where I was explaining what steps Yuri took when engaging the Portuguese community:

(1)    Yuri went to events like TechEd Brazil,

(2)    He started discussing TechNet Wiki with key MVPs and Leaders in the Portuguese community on tools like TechNet Wiki.

(3)    He gave presentation(s) and helped people get excited on the possibilities and opportunities of working together on TechNet Wiki,

(4)    He slowly worked with the leaders to form influencer teams to lead different projects (like the TNWiki Days Facebook page contest of the best Wiki articles of the week, the Twitter account for TNWiki Brazil, specific organized content efforts, the new Brazil Wiki site, etc.), and then…

(5)   The other community leaders headed up their own similar efforts/projects (like Luciano and many others with the translation efforts).

Dan had a good insight… Yuri is like this shirtless dancing guy:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fW8amMCVAJQ

 

And here's the same topic at TED: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBngiABc73Q

 

Some people might think that the concept of collaborating on a Wiki is like a crazy shirtless man who's dancing by himself.

In these videos above, the narrative is all about the first few followers and the impact they had (which is true). Essentially they represent the MVPs and Leaders who Yuri started working with in the Brazilian community. But really the credit shouldn't go to just Yuri or to the first community leaders, but the success is only because the whole Brazilian community has come together!

One thing the video doesn’t mention (but should), that Dan mentioned, was that once the video ends, you can’t see the Leader anymore. You can’t even see the first followers. They’re merely people inside a larger community that’s working together.

Less shaky (+ no narrative): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuZue4CXZXg

When watching the video, I thought it looked like the top hill at the Gorge in George, Washington.

Hey it is: http://sasquatchfestival.com/

(This was the Sasquatch Festival at the Gorge in May, 2009.)

One thing we can learn in the international space and probably in community in general is that you could be seen as the crazy shirtless guy (Yuri), but once those first few people join in the fun (the MVPs and Brazilan community leaders), the community can clearly see something great to plug into. The first few people are very important to the influence and community process. Similarly, the Brazilian community has come together and it's no longer clear who's the leader. That's when you really know that the community is working together.

Have a great weekend, and thank you to everyone in the Brazilian community who has worked so hard! (And now Yuri doesn't appear so crazy any more. He's no longer dancing by himself.) =^)

 

- Ninja Ed