[Article] Introductory experiences with the Army of Awesome.



This is an article written by one of our community members,Kshitiz Khanal, regarding his experiences with the Army of Awesome.

Introductory experiences with the Army of Awesome.

It all started strangely. I was dead bored by using the internet for too long. I opened the browser I had just closed. (No prizes for guessing my browser, but yes, Firefox!) I clicked the ‘Mozilla’ on top right corner and began clicking links after links haphazardly until this line caught my eye:

“Good things will come to those who tweet!”

Two words – ‘good’ and ‘tweet’ struck and it got interesting. It was not the first time I had heard or read about Mozilla’s Army of Awesome; but it was the first time I felt like joining them! And, join I did.

Here’s what the Army of Awesome does. Every tweet that uses the word ‘Firefox’ is collected and sorted by most recent at the top. The army, using their personal twitter ID, replies to those tweets as they deem fit keeping in mind that they are there to help the users of Firefox to serve the one true cause: Open Web.
Replies can be made by clicking available templates or personalized messages with twitter hash tag #fxhelp. Templates are categorized into:

  1. Welcome and Thanks,
  2. Using Firefox, Suppport, and
  3. Get Involved.

Top contributors are ranked by number of replies they made over the running week in the same page where all tweets were collected – the battleground of the Army of Awesome.
I gave myself a mission to get into the top contributors’ list. My mission began.
I tweeted like crazy. In my first day, I got into bottom ranks of the list. It felt awesome to see my name there. The better part was yet to come.

Awesomeness exploded when my replies got more replies and retweets. It was those reply backs that became incentives to continue the good work and not the ranking.
One interesting thing happened. Some tweets were too confusing to reply. They turned out to be about a Clint Eastwood movie – Firefox. Actually, most of those tweets were in favor of the movie. That movie’s on my list now.

As my number of tweets kept multiplying, I realized the templates were not enough. Initiator of Mozilla Nepal, Avash, also suggested the same to me. My later tweets are mostly a combination of links provided in those templates and tweaked messages relevant to the post.

Army of Awesome is an easy, effective, and empowering way to contribute to Mozilla. Everybody – coders, evangelists, localizers, should be involved in the Army of Awesome once in a while to get an idea of what the users feel like and what they want.

Mozilla foundation can provide open badges to contributors to provide more incentives.
The whole experience in the Army of Awesome is enriching. Good things, as promised, do come to those who tweet!

Kshitiz Khanal


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