Fortuitous gives us seven tips for managing a successful community.
- Take emotion out of decisions.
- Talk like a human, not a robot.
- Give people something they can be proud of.
- Bring users in during community decisions.
- Moderation is a full-time job.
- Metrics spread the work out.
- Guidelines not rules.
Check out the post for a detailed explanation of each.
As a forum moderator and blogger myself, I agree with each of these as important ways to keep any online community healthy and happy. I haven’t had any trouble yet, either here (thanks to Akismet catching all the lovely spam comments) or on the forum I moderate. (I wonder if GTD cuts down on forum trolling, or if I’ve just been lucky.)
I think one of the keys to keeping members of a community happy is to guide conversations. Ask relevant questions and respond to posts with carefully thought-out posts of your own. I think this either prevent the endless opinion war, or else makes harassment obvious enough that no one will blame you for banning a troll.