Blend online and offline

Digital and online innovations don’t only have to be delivered online. Online tools can support local community building and action - and projects should plan to work both on the web, and in local or face-to-face settings.


  1. Amplifying offline action

  2. Katie Bacon describes how sharing content online can increase the impact of a discussion or project.
  3. That's pretty much our experience with the project of putting together these key messages, which has blended face-to-face dialogue with real-time and asynchronous online participation, plus picking up on videos and photos from other people's blended events.
  4. Starting online, but going beyond

    Some people have argued that online campaigning or engaging amounts to little more than 'clicktivism' - the illusion of engagement, but without really leading to true engagement or change. A high-profile article by Malcolm Gladwell put it like this: "online networks are characterised by weak ties (remote relationships, but lots of them). ‘High-risk activism’, on the other hand – the kind of activism that drove the civil rights movement in the US – requires relationships based on strong ties (involving close friends, such as the people you grew up or went to school with)."

  5. But others have argued that online engagement is a starting point for offline action, the start of a pathway through participation. 
  6. Blended learning

    'Blended learning' is much discussed in education: highlighting the need to rethink how learning works with new technologies. Blended learning combines classroom environments and face-to-face settings, with digital learning environments. 
  7. Blended Learning in Plain English
  8. Blended facilitation

    Blended facilitation might start with face-to-face engagement and then take it online, or it might also start from online discussions, taking those discussions into different spaces, and bringing in face-to-face meet ups as part of the process. In the slideshare below, Ed Mitchell describes some approaches to blended collaboration...
  9. Going hyperlocal

  10. Hyperlocal websites are one way of blending online and offline - providing digital content related to a small local area - and using the web to support local community discussion and action. How engaged are young people in your local hyperlocal websites? OpenlyLocal has a directory of hyperlocal sites...
  11. Talk About Local have been delivering training across the UK to groups on how to use digital tools to support local online and offline action. 
  12. 3 ways to use Facebook in your local community
  13. Supported digital

  14. Not all young people are online, and some of those who are only have occasional access to the net, or may face challenges using digital services. Government is moving towards the idea of all services being 'digital by default'.