Wednesday, December 07, 2005


communities a hot topic

So my little post about communities generated more interest than this blog ever has seen before (which isn't saying much, but still). To start with we got a few diggs and we made it up on threadwatch and tech.memeorandum. We also got a nice mention on both bubblegeneration and conversion rater. Emergic also has some nice thoughts posted. Big thanks for the shout outs guys!

Some interesting feedback has been created as well.

From conversion rater:

I’d like to see something that mergest the best of everything out there. Give me a Digg front page news system, combined with photo/media sharing like Flickr, profiles for social networking within the community to act as the user’s home page like Myspace, and perhaps some social bookmarking capabilities like

From a comment by Adam:

I think there's something to be said about hobbyist communities, such as the uber-popular swing dancing forum at Yehoodi. There's no pre or post-modding of original posts or comments, but rather... threads that are perceived as particulary interesting or funny or otherwise valuable will end up constantly at the top of each sub-forum, since each new post brings a thread to the top (standard for most forum software).

From a comment by Rishi Khaitan:

You didn't mention sites like Memeorandum which leverage the existing decentralized blogsophere community that and then algorithmically figuring out what are the most important and popular topics at any given moment.

From bubblegeneration:

My kid sister is young enough to think that MySpace is corporate and lame. How do you think her generation is going to express and define itself?

From a comment by anonymous:

You didn't talk about wikipedia. Overall the things I like best in communities is where it is really easy (craigslist style) to start making posts to communities but where there is also a big reward (like digg) to sign up and become a full member. Its going to be hard to scale any community though and will probably require more oversight than digg, but less than slashdot.

There is a lot of possibility out there and no one seems to have found anything that can be as well used as usenet back in the day. The key will be to find something that will be like a reverse IM revolution, where instead of communicating being "instant" it can now be channeled into contributions to a longer lasting knowledge base that is shared and maintained by, well, everyone. In theory things like wikipedia and digg are already doing that, but they are too complex and tend to turn off readers rather then engaging them. IM doesn't have that problem. No one downloads AIM or Yahoo Messenger to listen, they download (and sign up) to talk!

For my part I still want to know more about the direction the Internet community expects community tools to go. What say you Internet? Got in a fresh ideas?

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