Guide to using Slack

Need some help getting Slack to work for you? Here is all the information you need!

Introduction

Using Slack as a GGJ Site Organiser is a requirement when you sign up to run a GGJ site. It allows the GGJ management team to connect with you, as well as being an important channel for major announcements, and a great way to connect with the hundreds of other site organisers all over the world!

Making an account

Once you have spoken to the RO, and confirmed that your site will be running, they will either send you an email invite, or a link to get you on to the GGJ Organisers Slack. Use a username where people will be able to identify you easily, and make sure you add your site name into your profile description so that if you post photos or questions, we know what site these are from!

What channels you should join

There are many many many channels in the GGJ Slack, and this can be a bit overwhelming at first! You don't need to pay attention to everything all at once, and if you find it all a bit too much, we ask you to at least pay attention to the #announcments channel, which is where all the important information about deadlines, diversifiers, keynotes and themes will appear.

Other channels we recommend keeping an eye on:

  • #general - for general chit chat among all of the SOs for GGJ that year

  • #help - your first place to go for a quick community response, or to get ideas for your jam

  • #photos - post photos from your jam site here so we can see how you are getting on, and for a chance to be included in the official GGJ Facebook album of the year!

  • #posters - if you are going to make a poster for your site, we would love to see it here, as we collect them all together in an album each year. Also your chance to see others creative work.

  • #random - more causal SO chatter

  • #stories-and-games - tell us a story from your jam site this year

  • #streaming - post information about any streaming you are doing from your site, and tune into others

  • #gamesiplayedandloved - share games from your site which you particularly enjoyed

How to direct message someone

The first thing we ask you to do as a new SO is to message your RO. That way we know that you have figured out some Slack functionality, and also can find your first point of contact! You RO will help you whenever they can, however for quick response - especially as we go closer to jam time - we recommend you ask in the #help channel. Afterall if you have a question, chance are someone else needs the answer too.

To DM your RO, hit the + in a circle next to the 'Direct Message' text in the left side bar, and search for your RO by name. If you get lost or confused, feel free to message @jo who will be able to point you in the right direction.

How to set up notifications for you

Slack can sometimes get a bit overwhelming, however you can custom what notifications you receive to make sure you get the more important ones without feeling overwhelmed.

To do this, click the small arrow \/ next to the the name of the Slack group in the top left corner (in this case #GGJ20), click preferences, then make sure you are in the 'Notifications' sub section.

We recommend you select 'Direct messages, mentions & keywords', which means you will get a notification on an important message or when someone directly addresses you. You can also add in some personal keywords below to get a notification if someone mentions something you are interested in (the country you are based in for example).

Another thing we recommend is adding 'Do not disturb' hours (at least to your phone settings) below in this panel. GGJ is a global event, and so it will always be an unsociable hour somewhere when an announcement is made. You can make sure we don't wake you up by adding this option!

Whatever settings you have, make sure you check the announcements channel at least once a week as a minimum.

How to set your description and see the descriptions of others

As mentioned above is is really helpful for us if you list your GGJ role, and what site you are involved with from in your Slack description. To do this: click the small arrow \/ next to the the name of the Slack group in the top left corner (in this case #GGJ20), click 'Profile & Account' where you should see your profile pop up on the right hand side,, then click the 'Edit Profile' button. Under the 'What I do' box, Add in your role and location, so for example: 'SO for Brighton, UK'.

What "pinned" items are and how to see them

After paying attention to the announcements channel, pinned items are the next most important thing to learn about in Slack. Each channel may have a number of pinned items, and this is normally important or useful documents and discussions to that channels topic.

To see pinned items, open any channel and at the top of the screen you will see a little pushpin with a number next to it (showing the number of pinned items). Click on that pin, and then click on 'view message' to explore that topic further... you never know what you might find!