Rules for #13minpanel

meridaDo all those overlapping Twitter #chats serve any real purpose for the travel community in general?

You know what I’m talking about: those weekly round of questions that spill out every five or ten minutes and prompt a stream of community replies. Not a bad idea, but too often — I find — it can seem like a headless-chicken dance, a “see me, hear me, feel me” exercise with nothing to tie all the replies at the end (though I tried to do this once). Only the brief passing punctuation of an RT, emoticon, “back atcha” or “+1.”

So I’m experimenting with #13minpanel. (Here are the results of the first one, from 2pm EST, September 27). Here is “rule” spreadsheet.

What is #13minpanel?
The #13minpanel – “min” means minutes – is playfully didactic, but not satire. It allows the travel community to weigh in and respond to various issues in a nonsponsored environment — with the goal of reaching some sort of “take away” from the feedback.

And that’s key: there’s some sort of results “filed” from all this.

Who hosts it?
The #13minpanel is a collective played out on Twitter. ANYONE MAY HOST #13MINPANEL.

You need no permission.

What are the responsibilities of a host?
Just schedule one, at any time of your choosing, at least 45 hours in advance. Use #13minpanel, and agree to publish some wrap-up #takeaway of the “findings” of the panel via Storify.

Can it be sponsored?
Are you kidding? Absolutely not. The big rule for #13minpanel  is it cannot be with a partner, any sort of #hashtag campaign.

How are questions/prompts published?
The #13minpanel needn’t be limited to questions, but you can consider three types of “pulse prompters” to be determined and issued by the host:

  • #QfC (question for community)
  • #SoF (statements of fact)
  • #SoO (statement of opinion)


  • Is travel fun? #Qfc #13minpanel
  • Jamaica is trying to legalize marijuana to push pot plantation tours. You OK with that? #SoF #13minpanel
  • There’s too many Top 10 lists. We need a six-month moratorium so the Internet can catch-up. #SoO #13minpanel

Incidentally no #13minpanel theme is necessary, just as long as there’s some tie to travel – even loosely.

How long does it last?
Conversation is free to continue after 13 minutes, but NO new “pulse prompters” can be published after 13 minutes.

Can the #takeaway be quoted on my blog?
Sure. Anyone is free to use findings from a #13minpanel #takeaway in articles or blog posts, with credit to their source (usually a Storify link).

DSCF6546What if I break the rules?
If any #13minpanel host breaks these rules, they will be “outed” by me, the founder of the #13minpanel collective.

Good luck! Hopefully you’ll never be caught saying this in the travel field again:

About Robert Reid

Robert Reid is a travel writer (Lonely Planet, New York Times, ESPN), travel expert (Today Show, CNN's Headline News), travel videographer (76-Second Travel Show) and travel artist (don't ask).
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2 Responses to Rules for #13minpanel

  1. Tessa Horehled (@tessa) says:

    Haha. I highly approve of this effort! See you at 2.

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