Ethics of digital engagement: How far is too far in the quest for attention?

If you’re a regular reader, then you know I’m a big fan of TED Talks. A recent episode titled “Manipulation” got me thinking about the community manager’s role in the debate over social media and mental disorders. I won’t pretend to have any of the answers here—even the National Institutes of Health agree that there’s…

What is thanatosensitivity and what does it have to do with my community?

If you don’t acknowledge a member’s death, that person’s online contributions may live on, but their memory will quickly fade. Acknowledging death allows your online community to give special consideration to a person’s contributions and bring a sense of closure to the gap that can be left by a member’s passing. In case you haven’t…

Levels of order in online community: The art of banning users

I was listening to Community Signal (available wherever fine podcasts are sold) and Patrick O’Keefe’s conversation with famed criminologist George Kelling about applying the Broken Windows theory to community management. They discussed how behavioral demonstrations and “levels of order” can maintain a cohesive, orderly group, whether online or off. While the theory is somewhat controversial,…