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Massimo's Philosophy Café Message Board › Anyone up for smaller discussion groups?

Anyone up for smaller discussion groups?

Group Organizer
New York, NY
Post #: 22

I'm considering the idea of having additional meetups for this group, but with a smaller number of participants (say, 6 including me), to provide a more intimate, fruitful discussion of philosophical topics. How would people feel about that? It would still be at a restaurant of our choosing (and, given the smaller number of participants, we could change every time and sample different cuisines!) and allow people more of an organic conversation with me and other participants. Since this would take additional time out of my schedule, I am considering charging a fee for these special events (i.e., not just the nominal fee that is currently charged for regular meetups). What do you think would be a reasonable amount that you would be willing to pay (plus dinner, of course)?

What do people think? Is there enough interest to experiment on something like the above?

Ray K.
user 14217584
New York, NY
Post #: 3
It is difficult enough or impossible to participate in a group event now, smaller groups will only make it worse. Ray knowles
Group Organizer
New York, NY
Post #: 23

well, but these events would be in *addition* to the current ones.
user 7718561
Sunnyside, NY
Post #: 5
interested but limited income, and working on my thesis for the next 3 months. helen.
Seth A.
New York, NY
Post #: 1
Intriguing idea. If one of your goals is to give more people an opportunity to attend these Meetups, then I’d suggest limiting registration to those who haven't attended in the last few months or so (not counting special events). Otherwise it will be the same regulars every time – and I say that as someone who’d like to attend more regularly!

As far as a fee goes, I’d guess that anything more than $10-15 (plus dinner) might be counterproductive. You’d then start selecting for those who have more disposable income, which could be interesting in and of itself but perhaps not what you intended…. Seth A
A former member
Post #: 1
I'm hoping more often we can get the people who don't make it into an event (maybe some of the other organisers?) to more often organise alternative meetups. Covering the same topic by different people probably would be a healthy kind of decentralisation, and it wouldn't place too much burden on any one person. I did this once and it worked reasonably well.
Roger S.
user 7395918
New York, NY
Post #: 4

If one of the goals was to be able to pursue topics in greater depth then is possible with the current larger group then I would be very interested. I don't need to vary the venue as long as I can hear and be heard. Price range (probably somewhere between and 10$ and 25$). I would be willing to experiment with it at least once (depending on the topic).

A former member
Post #: 74
An outstanding idea. About half the size of the current group is perfect for having a deep conversation in which everyone can participate equally. And variety of venue would be a good thing, too. Perhaps a policy of preventing people from attending more than one consecutive event would foster fairness here, given that the majority of those who would genuinely like to be included have busy schedules, and by the time we are able to sign in and check the Meetup site, the event is already full. Regarding price, I'm not sure what Roger and Seth are referring to exactly. Surely they don't mean to suggest $25 would be the cost of attending the Meetup! If that price includes dinner, then sure. Restaurants are often better than pubs in terms of noise level. So I'd be willing to pay a bit more to stay and have food & drink.
anne-marie l.
user 12623916
New York, NY
Post #: 1
First of all, I do think smaller groups would be better. Greater depth, better conversation, no problem hearing or being heard. Not such separation between thinking and speaking and listening. But Massimo, do you mean several meetings on the same topic - so that if one can't attend one meeting, there is a chance for another? Or do you mean a lot more topics?
I also don't think the venue is that important - the current one is easy for me to get to, though I can't say much for the "cuisine." But I don't have time to wander all over town.
As for fees: difficult - even philosophical, question. No reason for you, Massimo not to be paid - but it will tend to separate those who can from those who can't. I AM up for smaller discussion groups. I don't think it should cost a lot of money though.
user 6738164
New York, NY
Post #: 2
The older format at the Ethical Culture worked great! Food was not involved, so there was no cost for that and a great deal of people could attend without worry about being shut out of a waiting list. Afterwards, some people who wish could continue the discussion at a nearby restaurant over a glass of wine or food but that would be optional. If not Ethical Culture, than some similar venue might be worthy of your thoughts.
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