Webstersites is no longer an active project, but for Inludo it was a chance to spend time looking in depth at online communities and their needs and possibilities. From this project we have created several multiplayer games, and also a full on 3D chat environment with modifiable avatars and several 3D worlds, as well as a webpage generator for personal pages of members.
Through the work on webstersites we have generated countless ideas and concepts that can be of great value to any community project. The delicateness of this project as it involved children in care has also enabled us to get a fairy good grasp the importance and needs of security and protection that these kind of services need.
Below is a more detailed description of Webstersites. Even if it js no loger in excistence, it was a very forward thinking and ahead of its days kind of project:
Webstersites - General information
A WebsterSite is a suite of custom built components designed from the outset to aid Local Authorities (LA) in creating scaleable and robust online communication and community building among its Foster Carers, Adopters, and Young People in Care.
Developed over eighteen months with close co-operation from a partner Authority, each component has undergone an extended period of development and serves a specific purpose with the overall theme of making a WebsterSite a 'bolt-on' component to an Authority's existing web profile increasing community spirit between the stakeholders.
Due to its modular design, a WebsterSite does not require the complete rebuilding of an existing website and more importantly allows an LA to 'hook up' with other WebsterSite-enabled LA's to widen the base and facilitate further interaction. Thus,
an LA in Central London can open its door to a complete set of Young People in the East Midlands, without compromising its core integrity. Since every LA has accredited personally every member of its own discreet Webstersite, another LA is able to allow participation from those people and increase its user base without adding to its administrative burden.
The key features were::
With all these interactive and dynamic features, how do Webstersites assure Authorities that moderation is maintained? The answer is both simple and complicated - its all handled by our fleet of dedicated robots ('bots). Our bots sit
in every place where young people can interact with each other and moderate conversations in real time.
WebsterSite is only successful if the people it is intended foractually use it. Bland 'grey' content will not maintain the interest of youn people in an Authority's care for long and without strategies to entertain they will very soon 'click off' and trawl the general internet instead. The dedicated chat rooms in every WebsterSite allow young people to chat but at the same time ensure that this introduction to one of the more dynamic features of the internet is monitored. WebsterSites recognises that Authorities have a nervousness around webchat in general and has invested hundreds of hours of beta testing, including representation from Lincolnshire Family Placements Service,to address and answer all the 'comfort factor' issues that online
chat presents. The resulting chat engine is one of WebsterSites proudest achievements and is able to safely handle hundreds of concurrent users without
degrading its ability to moderate content in real time.
An extension to the chat room facility is the dedicated "Quiz Room", which is able to deliver previously prepared questions either at random or on timed events. Uniquely, the quiz room can operate completely automatically, rewarding correct answers in real time whilst still maintaining the moderation features of general chat. Quiz rooms can be designed around educational tasks in an entertaining way and of relevance to Young People. In the same vein quizzes can also be
implemented with an adult audience in mind.
WebsterSites has undergone a lengthy gestation period before being launched and during this period has taken full advantage of a close relationship with its trial partners. One of the 'wish list' features that repeatedly surfaced was the need for some form of remote learning application, reflecting the legal requirement of an Authority to provide education to all of its young people in care irrespective of their behavioural/relationship difficulties. Pupils excluded from mainstream education are a cost burden on Authorities and home tuition is often inconvenient due to
geographical problems. We have therefore been in contact with several accredited development programmes in order to best cater for this need, as well as we have looked into doing our own develoments to best further this part of Webstersites
One of the most dynamic and interactive features of a Webstersite is its unique GameZone and it is undeniably the feature of which we are most proud. While there are dozens of gaming portals, including Yahoo, Lycos, and MSN, each of these
suffer from one key problem for an Authority, namely the fact that anyone can register an account and play. It is impossible to know whether or not you're really talking to teenage Jessica, yet on the other hand gaming online is one of the
features all our Young Peoples' 'focus groups' put at or near the top of their desirability lists.
Our games are involving, entertaining, and above all safe to play. Most are two player games, deliberately designed from the outset to encourage and aid young people to communicate with each other and build a rapport.
Services We Offer: