What is the culture of your community?

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Lisa

Chaotically Proportional
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Jan 6, 2004
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I read an article a few years back (I forget who wrote it) which talked about the different types of cultures you find on online communities. It broke them down into six distinct types.

Noisy, Defunct, Isolated, Practical, Restricted and Debating.

Each of these cultures could be defined by the rules, activity patterns and typical behaviours shown.

Noisy
Contains lots of "low value" posts like "congrats", "me too!", and "Great Post!" replies. Lots of posts, little substance.

Is more about the members post "look at me" types than anything which really promotes the topic of the forum.

Defunct
Is probably the most easily recognised. The lights are on, but nobody's home. Lots of spam posts dating back weeks and months.

Isolated
Focused on a very niche topic - maybe geographical-based, private, locked down invisible to guests.

Restricted
Enforces strict rules - no flexibility.
No self-promotion
No links in signatures

Debating
Contains frequent back-and-forth exchanges between the same people - trying to out-do, or prove the other wrong in some way.
Many members may feel uncomfortable posting due to the more dominant posters overwhelming threads/discussions.

Practical
Moderated well - with the staff being approachable
Most posts allowed, so long as they fall within the niche of the site (usually have a general chat area for more random posts)
Lots of helpful posts/replies from members
New Members always made welcome
Civil, friendly, supportive


Most people aim to have a practical forum, with a few targeting other cultures purposely (especially more niche sites). Where does your forum fall and is it what you want it to be?
 

zappaDPJ

Administrator
Joined
Aug 26, 2010
Messages
7,273
I'd like to think all my personal forums are Practical. The forums I maintain for companies tend to be more Restricted with a hint of the Isolated but still nestling on a bed of Practical.
 

southernlady

Devotee
Joined
May 8, 2005
Messages
2,423
Practical with a touch of Isolated as the niche is very small. But not locked down to guests except for one forum and of course, the admin area.
 
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