Archive for January, 2011
My previous post about Active vs. Passive moderation sparked a couple of conversations on twitter and thanks to the wonders of the internet I’ve been working with Alison Michalk (@alisonmichalk) to produce a joint-blog about when we think you should use Active Moderation (more commonly known as Pre-Moderation).
The post contains a list of the content types most suited to Active Moderation and how these can effectively used. It also contains a few tips on what you need to remember if you are going to use Active Moderation for any part of your community.
So as to not steal all of Alison’s thunder you can view the full post here; When To Pre-Moderate Online Community Content
As more people dive into the internet, discover new things and share experiences we need to keep in mind a couple of things from a Community Management perspective. What demographic is your community targeting and what is your policy on age? Do you have a lower limit in terms of who can access your community and have you got tools to back this up? What happens if you find out a regular (and contributive member) of your community has lied about their age and doesn’t meet the criteria?
The main reason I’m posing all these questions is because on the 8th February it will be Safer Internet Day and this focuses on keeping children and young people safer online. Now the areas they are looking to promote may come as second nature to you but take a step back for a second and think about it from the perspective of a new user to the internet who hasn’t been provided guidance on what they should and shouldn’t do.
For my part and to support Safer Internet Day I’ll be taking part in a Symposium for Young People and acting as a mentor to discuss some of the challenges faced when venturing online, how communities operate and what happens in and around videogames. What are you doing for Safter Internet Day and do you need to re-assess your community policies when it comes to young people?
Given that my artistic talent leaves a lot to be desired I’ve opted to steer clear of an infographic for this regardless of the current trend. Instead I’m going to go for a tried and tested method and that’s to do some baking. Now you may have started reading this and gone “what the hell is he talking about” and hopefully all will become clear shortly. Today’s recipe is one that is found all across the globe in various guises and with local twists to suite personal flavours but the core elements remain the same. What I’m talking about is the recipe for making a Community Manager and here it is;
- 200g of Authority
- 100g of Friendship
- 1 tablespoon of Understanding
- 1 teaspoon of Leadership
- 1 teaspoon of Guidance
- 3 slices of Care
- A dash of Respect
Mix the Authority, Friendship and Understanding in a large sized bowl until the mixture starts to thicken. Add in the teaspoon of Leadership and continue to stir. Once the volume has doubled due to the increase in air add in the teaspoon of Guidance and the dash of Respect. Now place in the oven for 60 minutes or until golden brown. Serve on a clean dish and accompany with the slices of Care.
For an interesting twist why not season with Creative Thinking, Problem Solving or Time Management?
Now I know a lot of people don’t like setting their community platform to automatically send messages to new users but with this post I’m going to try and give you a different perspective on things. I like the ability to send automated messages to new users on my community but there are a couple of “but only if” bits tacked onto the end of the statement. Sending automated messages is a quick and easy way to try and portray information to users, useful links on how the community operates or for giving signposts of things they should read before they start posting.
I think what annoys people when they receive these automated messages is the lack of a personal touch or a big fat “firstname.lastname@example.org” email address that the message is sent from (certainly if it’s an automated message by email). So how’s about attempting to personalise your message a little by adding some emotion even if you can’t include the new user’s name because that’s a bit tech heavy?
In addition to that why not set your community options so that all welcome emails originate from your personal email account as the CM? Or from your personal forum account if it’s an automated PM on the forum? This is something I’ve done and whilst email replies may go into a specific folder and replied to once a week I do try and respond to PMs as quickly as I can. This is where that extra personal touch comes in; sending those automated messages from a real account and also taking the time to respond if someone asks you a question on the back of it can work wonders.
This approach can help in developing relationships with new users and making them feel more comfortable in your community so why not try it for a bit?