Welcome Guest.   Make a donation to an author on the site December 20, 2014, 05:34:15 AM  *

Please login or register.
Or did you miss your validation email?


Login with username and password (forgot your password?)
Why not become a lifetime supporting member of the site with a one-time donation of any amount? Your donation entitles you to a ton of additional benefits, including access to exclusive discounts and downloads, the ability to enter monthly free software drawings, and a single non-expiring license key for all of our programs.


You must sign up here before you can post and access some areas of the site. Registration is totally free and confidential.
 
Check out and download the GOE 2007 Freeware Challenge productivity tools.
   
   Forum Home   Thread Marks Chat! Downloads Search Login Register  
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Reply  |  New Topic  |  Print  
Author Topic: Perils and Pitfalls of Online Community Management  (Read 3426 times)
app103
That scary taskbar girl
Global Moderator
*****
Posts: 5,357



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« on: January 22, 2011, 07:05:57 PM »

I came across an interesting post on Quora today, about the lifecycle of online communities. I am curious to know your thoughts and how what she says relates to our community. Are we perpetually locked into a stage somewhere between 1 and 2, without being adversely affected by most of the negative effects listed?

Logged

Renegade
Charter Member
***
Posts: 11,964



Tell me something you don't know...

see users location on a map View Profile WWW Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2011, 08:49:17 PM »

Interesting, but I'm not sure that the characterizations there all really apply here. (I only skimmed it quickly.)
Logged

Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker
Paul Keith
Member
**
Posts: 1,982


see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2011, 11:38:37 PM »

IMO part of what makes DC work is that I haven't seen any stage 2.

DC kind of represents many of the software hosted on it.

There's a stage 1 and a stage 4 but with no stage 2 and with mouser being the one true stage 3, the only stage 5 problem is the forum model itself and there's little growth for elitism as even long time members or groups get very little say over the topics themselves and most member priorities lean toward software.

Of course there's one key differential though in that DC is more of a niche community and not an ever expounding community like Quora. One does not fear downsizing while the other does. In many ways it's just a matter of scale when it comes to DC vis-a-vis Quora even though taken as a whole small scale communities aren't really exempt from those problems.

Logged

<reserve space for the day DC can auto-generate your signature from your personal PopUp Wisdom quotes>
mahesh2k
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 1,409



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2011, 01:48:05 AM »

Doco is developer+users community. Browse through all the topics with more than 10 replies, you'll find discussions of productivity softwares, buying suggestions, personal growth issues, life and etc. Doco is niche community and programs like coding snack, NANY keeps developers and users in loop of development and creativity. Never noticed any elite-signals here in any threads. Community is about what members can do with it, not what community fails to do for them. Trying to be everything to everyone is surefire way of killing community. It's not easy to grow community, sometimes it naturally grows or turns into dust, be it for any reason.
Logged
40hz
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 11,062



see users location on a map View Profile Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2011, 11:56:13 PM »

I think Ms. Freedman's lifecycle is just one of the many an online community can experience. As such, her article is valuable as a starting point for discussion and debate. But by the same token, I don't think the progression she describes is all that universal or inevitable.

Note: I found it interesting that one of the first comments up on Quora (by Liz Pullen) also voiced an objection to the sense of  "inevitability" the article seemed to present regarding the phases in the lifecycle:
Quote
While I recognize all of these phases in online communities I have participated in, there is a certain inevitability in the way you present the information that I'm not sure is the case.

Additional insights on the process of community building can be found in Jono Bacon's book The Art of Community Building. O'Reilly currently publishes the print edition. But a free PDF version is available for download here.

In the spirit of community, Mr. Bacon's book was released under a Creative Commons [Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)] license.

It's well worth the read.  Cool
« Last Edit: January 24, 2011, 12:03:26 AM by 40hz » Logged

Don't you see? It's turtles all the way down!
Bamse
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 410


View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #5 on: January 24, 2011, 02:39:58 AM »

I did not know what Quora was so had to read a blog post. Why I Don’t Buy the Quora Hype If he is correct, like use of high profile tech names is part of success for community, then it make no sense for them to think big picture stuff or even ahead Wink
Logged
app103
That scary taskbar girl
Global Moderator
*****
Posts: 5,357



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #6 on: January 24, 2011, 05:49:13 AM »

Bamse, skip whatever you read about Quora and just think of the link in my original post as a blog post link, since that is essentially what it is. (it was not an answer to a question on the site)

In the article you linked to, he is also partially wrong about the tech slant. It isn't only for tech related questions, not only for the techie type user, and not only for high profile names and people interested in things they have to say. Yes, there is a lot of that there if that is what you are following.

But it's also possible to follow keywords that have nothing to do with tech. For instance, my dad follows Jazz, and that is all he is interested in following there. Since he isn't following the tech topics, he isn't seeing what the guys at TechCrunch are seeing and writing about. For my dad, it's a brand new jazz Q&A site, and there are no high profile people involved at all.

Quora is a cross between a site like Yahoo Answers and Wikipedia, intended for any type of question on any topic.

I have answered questions that have nothing to do with tech, like these:

What's the worst pick-up line that was actually used on you?
How can I keep snails under control in my freshwater aquarium?
How do snails reproduce?
How can I tell if I have contracted the Ebola virus?
How do you find out if New Jersey is in a snow-related state of emergency?

Logged

Bamse
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 410


View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #7 on: January 24, 2011, 06:36:56 AM »

Well he is expecting more chaos and uncontrolled user groups than what you see now - and see use of Scoble like characters as hints they are all about clicks/hype and so will fail. "noise from the masses" will overwhelm them, matter of time.

Related to the article and reasons you posted it I have no important comments smiley - other than I agree with mahesh2k. DC probably belong to the group she refer to as LiveJournal sites. Strangely below the radar of typical community forces, happy and free. But this can quickly change. Find the thread about Mousers wet dreams of introducing advertisement while not change anything! I am sure it is possible but requires careful considerations. I remember some going NOOOO! If he actually did started with just handpicked affiliate deals, tiny weeny ads, this will be enough to get some out of control, perhaps leave. There will be the type of controversy she refer to. I think NOOOOs are highly influenced by the fact most sites/forums starting with revenue hunting go crazy and let not only site design but also content reflect marketing relationships. Like doing "reviews", not caring for where ads are placed and stuff. And they certainly do not ASK for permission either! Decrease of actual useful information/community values is expected, road of no return so NOOOO! smiley Given the right/wrong circumstances DC will also face the music but more or less out of context to use her article as a roadmap to compare with.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2011, 06:41:48 AM by Bamse » Logged
app103
That scary taskbar girl
Global Moderator
*****
Posts: 5,357



see users location on a map View Profile WWW Read user's biography. Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #8 on: January 24, 2011, 07:11:52 AM »

DC used to have ads a long time ago, but the community is too tech savvy to either see them or click them, so there wasn't much money to be made from displaying them, so rather than having them detract from the site, mouser decided to get rid of them.

The only time he thought of bringing them back had nothing to do with raising money to support the site. He wondered if he put Adsense back on the site, would Google spider its content better (we were having a bit of a problem with the Googlebot). At no time was this site ever in jeopardy of traveling down the path you described, if the ads were reintroduced. It also wouldn't have been permanent.

The final decision not to do it was based on the fact it wouldn't have resulted in what we wanted because the site wouldn't be any better spidered by the Googlebot, because content spidering for Adsense is done by the Adsensebot, for a different purpose, with different results,  and the results are kept separate from the data that is used by Google's search engine.

The LiveJournal group she described is the end of life, after having it's time in the sun, going through sale, and almost everyone leaving...kind of where Friendfeed is today, and where MySpace will soon be. That doesn't describe DC at all, since we are still growing, not shrinking; and the site has not been sold. DC can not enter that stage as long as mouser is still here and cares about the site.
Logged

Bamse
Supporting Member
**
Posts: 410


View Profile Give some DonationCredits to this forum member
« Reply #9 on: January 24, 2011, 07:24:31 AM »

You will and have seen those reactions I mentioned and that is a small step to what she says about revenue, usernames becoming part of management, detachment. I do remember the NOOOs and concerns were not a bot!

The closest relationship to her article must be LiveJournal.

Quote
Some platforms live on, hosting specialized conversations or niches. LiveJournal is an example I use all the time. It was MySpace before MySpace and by the time MySpace was Facebook, LiveJournal was forgotten. Except for the thousands of people that still use it. Niche communities of many kinds still live and thrive there and while LiveJournal is not on the front page of TechCrunch, it's not dead or even dying. Sometimes the best thing for an online community is for everyone to just leave it alone. ^_^


May be you could define what does NOT apply to DC before asking for comments on "what do you think apply?" Wink Whole article does not apply if you ask me, if we must be technical, but yes DC is not immune to controversy from changes and I do believe any testing of ad-bots will show that as well. As innocent, peaceful and misunderstood as it might be. Mainly because if you think black and white ads pretty much stinks, end of story. Ads/marketing get a bad rep from all those crazy site admins she obviously have seen mess up. If DC in 2073 were to experiment with ads I would not worry so much or look up effects of doing that in a book. Destiny is decided by own actions, there are no rules and even so there are exceptions - or make some up Wink
« Last Edit: January 24, 2011, 08:32:53 AM by Bamse » Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Reply  |  New Topic  |  Print  
 
Jump to:  
   Forum Home   Thread Marks Chat! Downloads Search Login Register  

DonationCoder.com | About Us
DonationCoder.com Forum | Powered by SMF
[ Page time: 0.035s | Server load: 0.03 ]