As a person conditioned to watching talking heads on TV, I always found these webinars lacking personalities and production value. But today was different. I think Education Week has hit on a format that allows for REAL audience participation in REAL Time. The topic for the discussion is above. The conversation was divided up into six areas with a virtual "booth" in the virtual "lobby." There was a different question to chat about in each booth. That meant I could enter a chat room, click on the green "chat" button, read what others were saying and add my two cents where I felt I could make a contribution or add support. This allowed me to find people who were saying things that interested me.
At the end, there was a live-streamed video discussion from each editor who headed up a virtual booth. One of them actually quoted something I had written! How 'bout that! It also allows the conversations to hang around in their archives, which you can refer to later.
Of course the skills you need to do this well are reading and writing. I do that every day so participating was easy for me. I think that this format is a real innovation. It allows individuals to fully have their say in real time but also in their own time and according to their own interests.
If these coming webinar summits interest you, check out the new Education Week. It is really exciting to see a novel use of technology coming from an educational source where individual voices can be captured and heard.