Software Inquire HN: How are online communities established?

Software


In most cases they splinter off an present online community or fanbase of a notorious creator/procure-neatly-known person. Hacker News used to be first and foremost attach populated by refugees from Reddit. Imgur additionally got started off Reddit. Reddit’s initial userbase largely came from readers of comp.lang.insist and Paul Graham’s essays (PG funded it, and posted bulletins there when it launched, 3 weeks after it started). StackOverflow largely came from the readers of the blogs of its two founders, Joel Spolsky and Jeff Atwood. Github’s customers were recruited from of us the founders met at meetups.

(I used to be an initial user of both Hacker News and Reddit, checking both out the foremost day they opened. Also used to be an admin at FictionAlley.org, which grew from 1881 to 100,000+ customers while I used to be there. That one used to be largely founded by refugees from Fanfiction.procure, along with the readers of two mailing lists dedicated to notorious HP fanfiction authors, Cassandra Claire and AngieJ. Identical pattern: refugees from an present community, + followers of a neighborhood Web neatly-known person.)


If my memory is perfect, I stumbled on PG’s essays from Slashdot, and through them reddit, and through reddit hn.

And this strikes a chord in my memory of how some of us theorize that lifestyles on Earth came from one more planet.

In a single manner it solutions the quiz, but additionally does now not answer it at all.

My bet for origination online communities from scratch shall be promoting and already having a small community. Effectively clearly notify material too. Nevertheless I focal level on the reddit founders early on pretended to be many extra of us on reddit, attributable to no one desires to enroll in an empty community.

The founders supplied the startup community. PG’s essay were the promoting. And both slashdot and the folk that posted PG’s essay there, the attach the promoting of PG’s essays.


The attach’s the mention of Digg? Thay used to be an enormous contribution to Reddit’s online page online traffic after their… redesign


I thought I used to be here on the foremost day, but your HN join date is at some point soon sooner than mine. Time flies!


Certain does, I dangle the the same day as you. Nevertheless wasn’t it pg’s weblog and now not Reddit that despatched the initial customers? Beginning to procure hazy on the particulars.


I focal level on it used to be both – now not abnormal to post an announcement for a brand new forum in multiple areas, and PG’s weblog and Reddit very grand had overlapping readerships (and authors) at the time. I stumbled on it through Reddit.

BTW, there are some YC founders that dangle join dates a lot of months sooner than us – HN used to be launch to internal YC batches about a half-yr sooner than it went public.


Right here is true, but they’ll additionally splinter off or be online versions of of tangible world communities. For instance Fb started from collages.


Why did of us leave Fanfiction.procure? I exercise fairly a while there, but I by no manner follow the meta discussions


The instantaneous reason used to be the total “PLAGURISM!” kerfuffle – Cassandra Claire’s work (which used to be immensely popular all the arrangement through the HP fandom) used to be booted off of it for having about a too many Buffy quotes. Discontent about FF.procure had been growing for a while, though – since they let somebody add and not using a moderation, a lot of the fics there were low quality or unfinished, a lot of the critiques were one-liners or abusive, and a lot of others.


Thank you for the answer. It appears it dates befriend from sooner than I started studying fanfiction, so I wasn’t even there then.

It’s true that sorting through the low quality fics on ff.procure is refined. Though I esteem being ready to leave a obvious one-liner as a review (when or now not it’s unfavorable, I generally are trying and provide an explanation for fairly extra).


Has HN changed loads since it inception? Or has it stayed largely he same?


It goes in waves. The tech replace (and the field) has changed significantly in the final 13 years. I would possibly perhaps perhaps relate at the core the custom has been largely the the same, but or now not it in all equity less tech-centered, less startup-centered, fewer of us with personal abilities in the subject issues being discussed, with extra discussions on politics (despite the general ban on political discussions) and social phenomena.


Thank you for responding! The technical subject issues are the foremost scheme for me. I’m hoping the core of HN stays.


I focal level on there would possibly be additionally an main step which is that generally these winning communities dangle price although others don’t join — what I’ve heard beforehand described as “Single Participant Mode”.

Instagram had filters and film bettering — and will then additionally post to Fb. Even in the occasion you knew no one else on Instagram, there used to be a reason to make exercise of it.

Github is mild a astronomical UX for Git. Which you will doubtless be in a position to host your personal repos and work along with your personal group, even in the occasion you by no manner perceive at others.

Why enact of us want to enroll in first?


I had no thought about “Single Participant Mode”.
Right here is very moving and is perfect. Info like that is game-altering. Thanks!


That is now not really handy in the context of an app the attach its reason is the community, so that you dangle now not really answered OP’s quiz. I cannot play reddit on single participant mode.

Communities launch round passionate, moving folks. Reddit first and foremost attach got popular attributable to it used to be overjoyed elephantine of technologists who were overtly sharing juicy particulars about their work. There were a form of of diversified web sites at the time that allowed you to curate bookmarks and such, but reddit had the folk that made moving comments on those bookmarks.


Reddit’s single participant mode is “files reader.” Would now not matter if or now not it’s aggregated by the community or curated. The reason it blew up used to be attributable to of us migrated from one more files aggregator, Digg, in 2010.


Why did all and sundry leave digg? It wasn’t attributable to they fucked up the knowledge aggregation, it’s attributable to they fucked up the community – the mettlesome and passionate customers couldn’t procure their posts to the entrance online page any extra, it used to be reserved for folks that were paying digg.

Reddit is dreadful at files aggregation, the entrance online page is a hot mess of memes and clickbait. You’ve to weed all that crap out to search out the of us you really would really like to hear to.


Create a community goes beyond “rally of us round something they are alive to about”.

1 – No longer all folks that dangle same preferences or just like the the same things are prepared to inform about or fragment solutions about that.

2 – I earn to focal level on of us gathering round some matter is a secondary crawl, the foremost factor that create of us earn round is ‘VALUES’ and ‘Tips’.

3 – We earn to inform about solutions with folks that we price, we earn to inform about what we like with traffic, now not strangers, why? Because all people is aware of that we fragment values, principles and a cosmovision with our traffic, family, and a lot of others.

So in the occasion you may earn to create a community, create round ‘idea and values’ and from this general ground you will doubtless be ready to space a foremost matter to be addressed by all and sundry.

No longer repeatedly will doubtless be a single matter, but a gap, just like the hacker files, our discussed arena of interest is “hacking things”, our values? Defy the station-quo, focal level on out of the box, bewitch the sad swan, search through the non-glaring, stop unsleeping for excellence, and a lot of others.

It wouldn’t be so winning are trying and inform about pointers on how to “hack things” with a bunch of douchebags ;D

Edit1: Also I seen of us talking referring to the moderation drama but in the occasion you dangle gotten completed the principles, values, principles… you are going to dangle your personal community policing who doesn’t attain the cultural/behavioral match.

Tips must be the very first factor to steer obvious of a ‘broken window’ custom.


Entertaining standpoint. Create you focal level on those “values” and “principles” desires to be explicitly said somewhere, or must they emerge from the early customers and the dialogue occurring round a matter?


I focal level on We want to attach as quickly as imaginable the foremost values and principles addressing what can kill the community as you are envisioning.

Furtherly, Which you will doubtless be in a position to perhaps be launch to inform about and combination an increasing number of if necessary…

Tips will doubtless be extra reveal and in step with your values and principles, the foundations are the vogue you create the principles and values be adopted/respected. Tips can alternate and adapt in opposition to the behaviors but, on the diversified hand, I focal level on principles and values form behaviors, certainly.

Thanks for asking that 😉


I constructed a 30ample+ member vbulletin community in the 2000s.

I broken-down sock puppets with diversified personalities and views that created threads, spoke back to each and each diversified and encouraged precise customers to answer and made them really feel welcome.

I additionally moderated as myself and used to be welcoming to precise new customers, (and the puppets 🙂

This did now not final extra than two months, as there were enough precise customers that the puppets were ready to largely hibernate. Nevertheless it certainly did happen, and it worked.

I by no manner outed my puppets and they weren’t broken-down longer than necessary.

Puppets is now not going to defend a community, but they’ll abet attach one.


That used to be really the the same factor Reddit did, IIRC. Get a bunch of diversified accounts and post moving stuff.

No person desires to enroll in a barren community.

That’s additionally why clubs and diversified social gathering areas entice of us with free drinks, VIP passes and procure some cliques to be in early, to generate motion.


AFAIK, Reddit used to be created in a the same manner. In step with Reddit cofounder Steve Huffman, in the early days the Reddit crew steady faked it ‘til they made it – a form of of fraudulent profiles to take dangle of recognition of the spot.


I dangle an extraordinarily early story. I be aware being chastised by one more user for posting hyperlinks to my very personal weblog over weeks. That’s how few posts there were.

I wonder if it used to be them looking out out for to form notify material.


how is it doing now after 20 years? I really feel the precise impart is as soon as the community comes together, it invitations or makes new comers really feel joyful. Also generally ragged participants steady crawl on for a lot of reasons.


It used to be a Dave Matthews Band fan community and I shut it down in 2015 attributable to server bills, (which the community largely covered By PayPal but I needed to enact fundraisers) looming security issues (drupal and vbulletin integrations that grew to change into laborious to procure security updates for and my very personal passing hobby in the band.

Nevertheless now not attributable to there wasn’t community.

I had a solid moderation and community admin group and of us writing notify material for the weblog.

To your level positive. Any community, band followers to burning man desires new blood repeatedly or this would possibly perhaps perhaps die. Of us crawl on.

There’s a form of focus on about this in the DOTA 2 community—-distress that is now not going to prevent at the end of esports if it doesn’t enact extra to create itself welcoming to noobs.


Why now not launch a subreddit on reddit and exercise the wiki for a weblog? Fair an thought, I have not any abilities running a subreddit. Plus I’m particular a Dave Matthews Band fan community wouldn’t offend somebody. So, reddit can foot the bill for your community. Fair prefer a backup incase of scenario.


I made a Fb online page of us broken-all of the manner down to join later on. I focal level on these diversified web sites are now not the corresponding to an integrated abilities I had sooner than. It used to be a “community pushed online vacation space.”

I enact dangle a backup and I will also create the forum on hand again, but I’m now not particular. It used to be a form of notify material to crawl dark .


You procure customers. The greatest segment imo is the regulars who stick round and consult with all and sundry, answer all the pieces. They create the core of a community and abet turn others into regulars.

I broken-all of the manner down to dangle 2 small arena of interest boards and there were repeatedly 2-5 folks that created the huge majority of the notify material (along with myself – I needed to post loads to launch and prefer it going, I used to be the foremost user!). Consistently making threads, checking in, answering questions, posting updates and photos.

Unusual traffic would be taught all that and both by no manner return, lurk or join in. They were alive to referring to the subject issues. Giving them special/increased privileges helped prefer them for longer, as properly, but sooner or later they steady scramble to less (or leave entirely) and somebody else takes their space.


I focal level on you really nailed this! I’ve constructed a couple boards, one which steady hit 15 years and has round 6000 registered customers. It’s member funded, hosted, moderated and a lot of others. I have not any segment in it anymore really and it has a astronomical custom. I’ve really steady launched a brand new forum for my most modern employer and our community participants.

Equivalent to you said, it takes effort from the person initiating it to like project and procure of us coming befriend / building a behavior of checking for new notify material. Then you dangle gotten to empower the folk that are alive to about what you are doing and treat them extra like an equal / admin / mod vs a straightforward user.

This ted focus on explains how I really feel about building a community really properly:
https://www.ted.com/talks/derek_sivers_how_to_start_a_moveme…


How enact you soar from the initial tens, to hundred to thousands of customers? How does the recognition scale in your abilities?


I focal level on the most moving manner is to defend a gap hobby and launch there. After I first joined Reddit, it used to be largely steady LISP programmers and there were no subreddits. They served that arena of interest properly, then grew from there. Fb started out serving Harvard college students, then all college college students, then all and sundry.

I started a YouTube channel (https://youtube.com/parttimelarry) final yr and used to be wondering if somebody would receive me. I had zero subscribers for my general programming channel, then made up our minds to focal level on something I used to be focused on studying myself. I narrowed my focal level to Python for Finance / Computerized Trading and documented what I used to be studying in public, and appears there are hundreds of of us looking out out for to search out files in this arena of interest and they are joyful to search out an arena to inform about it.

Now I’m heading in the correct route to achieve 10,000 subscribers this yr and dangle an audience that’s very engaged and gives a form of suggestions. So launch small, procure the foremost 100 customers. Even as you dangle gotten 100 customers, you know you will doubtless be ready to procure 1000. And whenever you procure 1000, you’re feeling like you will doubtless be ready to procure 10,000. After which extra of us launch noticing.

I additionally broken-all of the manner down to bustle a message board to inform referring to the band Tool. It’s steady one band, but of us like discussing their music and lyrics. Initially, I wished to be the lead notify material creator and affords of us a reason to stay round. They wanted some discussion of lyrics, photos, indicate critiques, hyperlinks to files articles and a lot of others. At final, particular participants started posting extra than others, like thousands of posts. I made some of them moderators, and they grew to change into leaders of the community, and it grew from there. The hardest segment is getting the initial 100 or so folks that are engaged, are alive to referring to the self-discipline, and are prepared to contribute.


YT Channel looks awesome. Fair subbed. Facet quiz — is algo shopping and selling worth it? Is there any edge which would possibly be bought? I would possibly perhaps perhaps bet that you would be rich and on a sea dart if it did…but maybe I’m immoral


No longer particular why, but that’s the third time I’ve heard about Tool communities and their organisation this month.


On-line communities are incessantly steady discussion boards, so that you will want something for folks to inform about, folks that want to inform about it, and performance allowing them to consult with each and each other.

The structure of a discussion board is generally a chronological feed of debate subject issues, so that you’ll desire a pipeline of subject issues to withhold the discussions new(ish).

And pointless to divulge you’ll be competing with a saturated “focus on about things online” residence, so there are strategic questions you’ll want to answer to. Are you going to provide an arena to inform about things of us can’t focus on about in diversified areas? Are you going to provide a movement of subject issues of us need but can’t receive in diversified areas? Are you going to provide a uniquely participating discussion structure? Etc and a lot of others and a lot of others.

I don’t know that somebody really begins communities, honestly. We’re already in a global one and it steady breaks down into smaller ones reckoning on geography, beliefs, hobby, and a lot of others. The factor you may well provide isn’t a community, it’s a platform. Give a community that already exists a refreshing new manner to join and likewise you’ll be in replace (scale tbd).


Right here is a phenomenal book that summarizes a lot of the scientific compare about developing and fostering online communities.

Constructing Successful On-line Communities: Evidence-Essentially based mostly Social Construct

Listed below are the chapters:

  * Encouraging Contribution to On-line Communities
  * Encouraging Dedication to On-line Communities
  * Regulating Habits in On-line Communities
  * The Challenges of Facing Inexperienced persons
  * Starting Unusual On-line Communities


The book reveals for me as $35 on Amazon (paperback) and $150 for hardback, so I would possibly perhaps perhaps counsel getting the Kindle or paperback model.

I’ve broken-down parts of the book in a category I taught on the Social Web, and positive, I did receive it really valuable and I focal level on the college students did too. This book really is the most moving one accessible summarizing a lot of the experimental scientific compare by the compare community.

It gifts a series of Construct Claims, after which backs up those claims by synthesizing the outcomes of outdated reports and analyses completed by the compare community. If you are less focused on the scientific literature, you will doubtless be ready to steady be taught the Construct Claims and mild procure loads out of it.

Right here is one example Construct Claim from the book (you will doubtless be ready to search it on p29 in Amazon Search for Internal characteristic): Compared to broadcasting requirements for contribution to all community participants, asking reveal of us to create contributions increases the likelihood they’ll enact so.

(Or to operationalize things extra: in the occasion you will want of us to enact something, don’t ship a mass e mail, ship the inquire of in my concept. I’ve in my concept stumbled on this to be a extra effective manner to procure things completed. Undergo in mind to easiest exercise this vitality for perfect, though.)

Also, let me define my battle of hobby: I’m a professor at Carnegie Mellon College in the the same department as one among the authors (Kraut), who I’m fairly particular the substantial majority of of us doing scientific compare on online communities would relate is a clear chief in the sphere.


Thanks for clarifying, I had bustle all the arrangement through this book final yr and put it in my Amazon cart after which made up our minds it used to be too tutorial. I will give it extra consideration.


> Which you will doubtless be in a position to fraudulent engagements with multiple accounts to procure the ball rolling ( reddit did it, indiehackers did it and a lot of others…)

As Steve Huffman described it in his ragged Udacity course (now now not on hand), no one desires to scramble to a ghost metropolis. So when they were making Reddit, they’d like multiple accounts to post from so it “looked” like a thriving community already existed. It does raise up moving questions about the attach it sits in on the ethics spectrum, however the chilly launch impart is mild very refined with no one resolution.


I used to be very enthusiastic with the Heart for Humane Tech community befriend when they first started and used to be a volunteer mod for fairly while. CHT is mild a factor but I focal level on the forum now now not exists. I seen the click launch referring to the organization being fashioned and it used to be something I really cared about so I stumbled on the forum on their web spot the attach a form of of us were becoming a member of and intensely wrathful to really procure something completed about these issues. The of us becoming a member of had impressive bios, connections in every nook of the tech replace, as properly as educators, psychologists, researchers, etcetera. The vitality used to be very precise and intensely thrilling first and foremost attach. It went broken-down after about a months attributable to all and sundry used to be steady there spinning their wheels, now not undertaking any action. It began to really feel extra like focus on remedy for folks that dislike dark patterns and manipulative app like. The management of CHT had an improbable launch to an exact nationwide grassroots network that they would possibly maybe dangle engaged to push for policy alternate in states all the arrangement through the country. There would possibly perhaps well were organized film screenings, letters to representatives, pushes for legislation, the total in vogue stuff. Nevertheless I focal level on they weren’t ready or ready to win succor of something like that, and the momentum died.

So in step with that abilities if I needed to define a straightforward 2 step process, I would relate: 1. Rally of us round something they are alive to about, and a few. Give them something to enact besides focus on. My abilities used to be disappointing attributable to #1 came about in a terribly astronomical manner, but #2 did now not.


I positively mild focal level on of their work. Nevertheless they wasted a form of of grassroots momentum first and foremost.

A film is frigid, but 5,000+ folks that are prepared to crawl evangelize to their family, traffic, and elected representatives is a whole diversified tale as a ways as really altering things.


The scenario here used to be that the founders of CHT promised “a cultural awakening” but then got flooded by both media and political consideration. So grand so that they would possibly maybe now not exercise any time on community-building. Loads of active forum participants then tried to defend up the initiative. Most necessary imo used to be that both the scope used to be too huge and the audience (all and sundry). And as you relate many of us were elephantine of the impart, but less inclined to be segment of the resolution in any precise sense, or were steady there to search out candidates for their very personal initiatives.


It is advisable be taught the book Of us Powered by Jono 1st baron beaverbrook. Has some really perfect insights and is a 101 course on exactly this.


Seconded. “Of us Powered: How Communities Can Supercharge Your Industry, Designate, and Groups” (2019)
https://g.co/kgs/CF5TEk

“The Artwork of Group: Constructing the Unusual Age of Participation” (2012)
https://g.co/kgs/P2V1kn

“Tribes: We need you to steer us” (2011)
https://g.co/kgs/T8jaFS

The 1% ‘rule’
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1%25_rule_(Internet_culture) :

> In Web custom, the 1% rule is a rule of thumb referring to participation in an web community, stating that easiest 1% of the customers of an online spot add notify material, while the diversified 99% of the contributors easiest lurk. Variants consist of the 1–9–90 rule (in most cases 90–9–1 idea or the 89: 10:1 ratio),[1] which states that in a collaborative web spot equivalent to a wiki, 90% of the contributors of a community easiest consume notify material, 9% of the contributors alternate or update notify material, and 1% of the contributors add notify material.

… Relevant metrics:

– Marginal price of provider https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marginal_cost

– Customer acquisition price: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Customer_acquisition_cost

– [Quantifiable and non-quantifiable] Customer Lifetime Fee: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Customer_lifetime_value

Final phrases of the nearly-cliche community organizer surrounded by dormant accounts: “Community effects will consequence in enough (grant) funding”

Industry mannequin examples that is also valuable for building and supporting sustainable communities with obvious Missions, Targets, and Standards for Success: https://gist.github.com/ndarville/4295324


Inquire is: what’s a web community ?

I earn now not focal level on HN is one. No longer lower than I earn now not dangle a approach of being a member of an HN community.


you dangle gotten 6000+ karma. whether or now not you’re feeling like you are a member or now not, you clearly participate on a continuous foundation.

i focal level on an cheap definition for online community is a neighborhood of parents that generally and repeatedly take part in the the same online platform.


Someplace on this spot there would possibly be a comment from me stating that HN is pseudonymous and has a faux small arena of interest appearance attributable to its UX and its lack of emphasis on interpersonal connections or any anticipated substances of social networks. To me, all and sundry looks to be extra or less the the same person (or really there are one billion of diversified of us but since I cannot prefer tracks of what they said sooner than all of them steady exist in a vacuum). I steady know about dang, percival and one more one I neglect but acknowledge after I search it (alathorn ?).

That does now not really feel like a community to me. Every new submissions/feed is elephantine of most modern of us with new advices, there is now not a continuity on HN.

No longer asserting or now not it’s horrible or a reliable factor though. That’s steady how I really feel.


We broken-all of the manner down to name possibilities of a video game the participant immoral. Now all the pieces’s a community.

I earn now not search the unification round a single thought when they are so many disparate views amongst the folk that come here.


I be aware studying that the Reddit founders created fraudulent customers and posted hyperlinks / dialog starters in state to create the spot really feel prefer it had some degree of necessary mass.


This used to be a trick implementors broken-down when initiating a brand new MUD too. If somebody logged in and seen no one else on the who list they’d disconnect and by no manner come befriend. Ideally you had at least the builders and about a testers committed to really taking part in after which you’d pad those numbers with fraudulent accounts or bots.


Practically every huge online provider started by utilizing fraudulent accounts or dinky to no principles.
That is the vogue you create a community.
Earn all and sundry to level up then slowly alternate the foundations/taking part in field.
Anyone be aware that linkedin launched as a rip-off provider?


Would possibly you please hyperlink some reference to the linkedin stuff? Can’t receive anything on google


Right here is a abstract of what I be taught on community building.

– Shared struggles are stronger and final longer than shared interests (That’s why a forum for solopreneurs (struggling with so grand…) would possibly perhaps well dangle a extra supportive vibe than a impart community.).

– Be an active and mettlesome moderator: Solution questions hasty and be a position mannequin

– Make obvious pointers for posts (What’s allowed? What now not?)

– Delete all the pieces that violates the pointers

– Let customers flag posts

– Hunt and ban spammers

– Spend captchas for amateur posts


Thoughts about conserving quality of community:

1. Circulation of most modern notify material

2. Maintaining a (maybe revolving) core neighborhood of contributors (20% of the userbase generates 80% of the project)

3. Quality prefer an eye on/moderation (all people is aware of what came about to Quora)

An web community must be aspirational (as in contributors want to be segment of an exalted concept neighborhood, e.g. SV founders) or wait on a need for files by some ability.


> Maintaining a (maybe revolving) core neighborhood of of us (20% of the userbase generates 80% of the project)

very true but 100% of the userbase will consume 100% of the project, indecent numbers but level being that while easiest 20% are developing notify material a increased fragment, rob all and sundry, will consume it.

In the UK there would possibly be a community known as mumsnet – I do know so many of us (including me) who consume from it but enact now not generate befriend.


Oops I intended to divulge contributors — you are correct pointless to divulge.


I focal level on that’s now not fairly the coolest quiz to ask. The quiz to ask is: what reason will your new community web spot/app wait on that’s now not already being met by present ones?

Right here is one epic: in my concept, I have not yet stumbled on anything that captures the feel or social vibe of early/mid-2000s LiveJournal. I focal level on what one more commenter in most cases known as “Single Participant Mode” really had fairly fairly to enact with what drew me to LJ in the foremost space – at least first and foremost attach a form of what it used to be about for me used to be personal blogging steady for me, and I progressively explored diversified personal blogs and communities while I used to be doing it, sooner or later forming precise friendships/relationships with diversified LJers.


An estabshed community migrating to their very personal platform is an likelihood. Five-thirty-eight extra or less started this manner.

Soundless teams or constituencies (instrument customers, professionals, tutorial community, sport membership or followers, entertainment/music, and a lot of others.) are diversified choices. Artificially-prompted growth is one more likelihood — a lot of subreddits dangle grown from nothing to 100ample+ participants in about a months

Starting a generic commuity in the intervening time would doubtless be refined (though search; Snapchat, WhatsApp, etc0.) Even properly-capitalised firms fare poorly at this (e.g., Google+).

Likely greater to dangle a particular community in mind. Or some thought as to what you hope to enact.

Otherwise: perfect notify material, consistent posting, execrable-promotion, and time.


Shared general hobby. If you are building it for one community segment, odds are that you dangle gotten connections that would possibly perhaps perhaps receive exercise in participating with that community. So I would possibly perhaps perhaps launch sharing with those that don’t mind initiating the community from nothing.

Like if or now not it is a community about a earn of automobile, you will doubtless be in a position to need some initial homeowners or prospective homeowners (if it hasn’t launched yet). Maybe some DIY guides for general upkeep, files portion for OEM and aftermarket releases, and a lot of others.

This form more recent traffic receive already-established and valuable notify material and stick round to inform about and add to it.


There must be a reason dull of us to crawl to the community:

– HN: discussions and files

– Reddit: arena of interest subject issues and conversations

– StackOverflow: ask questions and receive solutions

All these reasons are diversified for the aim demographics. Confidently you will doubtless be ready to procure of us to come to the spot to be taught, then participate and generate extra notify material for others to leer and browse ad-nauseum.

Websites which create it relaxing/valuable for folks both drinking or generating notify material, are those with thriving and growing communities….


I would possibly perhaps perhaps advocate listening the early episodes of the Stack Overflow podcast for some insights. There are a form of nuggets buried there.


HN/reddit/SO came there first, or at least all the arrangement through the command cases when the pieces are mild up in the air. After the pieces fell, making a brand new community with out a form of $$$ is refined, if the reason is entirely community. If nonetheless the provider gives an additional treasured provider , a community can earn and grow as an increasing number of customers exercise the provider.


You’ve to procure of us there, and likewise you dangle gotten to procure them to hope to anguish coming befriend.

1. raise awareness. e.g. though word-of-mouth ideas, or promoting (online, TV, events, IRL?)

2. it has to dangle something to withhold consideration,

3. it must be worth coming befriend to

It happens through phased growth, in most cases explicitly deliberate, repeatedly interactively managed. A marketing and sales pipeline gives a google-ready articulated glance of a the same process. Or scramble as a ways “Manufacturing Consent”

They’re constructed on obvious suggestions cycles, the attach contributions spur extra engagement of viewing, and prompting others to comprehend. These are known as virtuous cycles, when or now not it’s entering into a desired route (e.g. extra contributions pressure extra views pressure extra contributions), and merciless cycles when they are now not (horrible drives out the coolest, e.g. toleration of off-matter / base notify material, deters handy contributors from returning, while encouraging extra detrimental contributions).

I would advocate studying Peter Hintjen’s “Social Structure”[1]. He addresses a quiz worded exactly the corresponding to yours. He constructed a extra narrowly scoped community as an integral segment of building the ZeroMQ messaging library and tools, and making sure that it used to be valuable to as many of us as imaginable.

Also, are trying his diversified books [2]. Though, level to that gitbook.com broke the hyperlinks, and e.g.

https://www.gitbook.com/book/hintjens/social-architecture/de…

turns into

https://hintjens.gitbooks.io/social-architecture/notify material/

[1]: https://hintjens.gitbooks.io/social-architecture/notify material/

[2]: http://hintjens.com/books

I’m planning to grow a neighborhood chat (matrix self-hosted) with traffic, into a dev.to-forked blogging community, that I will fragment with diversified tech traffic, non-tech traffic, co-staff, and exercise to level work successes to family.


Sooner than extreme about developing, or participating in an “online” community, judge the the same without the procure.

A community is first fashioned by folk. The procure fragment is steady a platform, or an arena of logistics.

This would possibly perhaps perhaps throw you befriend in time but be taught Scott Peck’s The Diversified Drum, to procure an exact really feel of what a community is.


The foremost (for any product), from what I dangle realized and have not any abilities of it, appears to be finding a `beachhead market`, a startup term for finding a smallest imaginable subset of a gap, the attach you will doubtless be ready to dominate (attach a community in this case) after which grow from there one step at a time.


You fraudulent it except you create it. Reddit steady created customers except they had a necessary mass of engagement.


I’m looking out out for to enact this correct now at conferacity.com, and it’s really laborious. Nevertheless I’m hoping of us will proceed to are trying and experiment with new discussion communities online, now not steady in step with the self-discipline, but additionally on the governing principles and structure. It appears now not going that 50 years from now, we’ll perceive befriend and relate that the present codecs for online discussion were the most moving we would possibly perhaps perhaps enact, although the present codecs are all clearly providing price to customers of their most modern earn.

An space I’m in particular focused on is, on condition that nameless boards require moderation, but “moderation doesn’t scale”, what would happen in the occasion you easiest allowed moderators to contribute to the discussion. Or rather, what in the occasion you easiest allowed folks that dangle the necessary attitudes, skill and emotional intelligence to be an effective moderator to contribute to the discussion?

You’d clearly grow grand slower in the occasion you’re limiting contributor growth to a small subset of customers. And maybe that constraint on growth would mean you by no manner change into a viable online community. Nevertheless in the occasion you would possibly perhaps perhaps procure to some threshold size, you may well receive that the usual of debate is sufficiently diversified that a form of of us would possibly perhaps well dangle to be taught such discussions without necessarily taking segment at as soon as.

Ideally, the contributor community would create choices about what those required qualities are, and pointers on how to evaluate new applicants. Nevertheless we already dangle communities like this offline – that is exactly how tutorial communities behave. Soundless “contributors” (professors with phd’s in the self-discipline) judge who they settle for to their community, in step with evolving requirements made up our minds by that community. It’s additionally moving that this, at least from my outsider standpoint, is additionally how YC operates – they’ve a particular ethos, norms of habits and a lot of others, they admit folks that they focal level on are per those norms, after which put in pressure those norms: https://www.ycombinator.com/ethics/

I focal level on there’s an enticing analogy with legit sports. Baseball is an very most moving accessible game, all you will want is a stick, a ball and a field, so nearly somebody in the field can play. Nevertheless the vogue to procure excessive quality baseball that folks want to pay to perceive is now not by allowing somebody onto the sphere, but by limiting the gamers on the sphere to those with the necessary abilities.

No matter how my reveal “experiment” works out, I focal level on it shall be astronomical to search extra innovation in this space.


i gave up on hn.

i grew to change into passive about a months ago. sorry dang, but no matter the vogue you wanna perceive at it or defend it, hn is now, for me, a hivemind. but i steady logged in for the foremost time rapidly attributable to i in actuality esteem this quiz.

a community is an arena the attach of us scramble to and focus on about things they like. it is an arena they’ll procure away to.

i were segment of a ways too many. i dangle seen communities started by 12yo and 50yo. some are mild there while i moved on. some are dear and conclude to to my heart. i left some for personal reasons. of us were getting a ways too conclude and personal and likewise you procure timid. but you like in contact with those of us you in actuality esteem to consult with.

astronomical communities don’t die, they steady win up a brand new title.


I’m weird how does these online communities enact notify material review to make positive or now not it is now not stuffed with all spams, porn or even unlawful notify material?
besides algorithm, what number of human sources are spent on these items?


I dangle constructed a couple communities over the years and currently bustle a community with extra than 20 million month-to-month customers.

I will rob the roughly community you are referring to is one the attach the foremost focal level is social networking / discussion in the vein of Hacker News, Reddit, and a lot of others.

The vogue you create a community is to launch with an present community.

What I mean by that’s you dangle gotten to search out an present pool of customers who’re focused on what you offer and raise a form of them in straight away. From there you will doubtless be ready to focal level on slower natural growth. Examples: YouTube and MySpace both started as relationship web sites. YouTube centered on getting of us to add introduction videos of themselves. When they had gathered substitute folks that were prepared to film themselves they pivoted over to notify material introduction. In the same vogue, MySpace used to be an extraordinarily shameful relationship spot that allowed of us to customise their online page. Brad Greenspan used to be a serial investor who sold up an enormous number of cramped relationship web sites. He cannibalized the total income from those web sites to promote MySpace as a “free” relationship spot. They’d millions of customers coming from diversified web sites.

reddit used to be promoted carefully on Hacker News and centered on a tech crowd first and foremost attach. Paul Graham threw his endorsement dull the platform about a cases and that additionally helped hobby of us in checking it out.

For my winning community web sites, I will steady mention one abilities – I had constructed a Q&A spot from scratch. It used to be lastly completed one Sunday evening and I particular to crawl to mattress. There were eleven posts instantaneous, largely from myself, but additionally a couple from traffic I would possibly perhaps perhaps asked to test the spot for me. It used to be glaring there used to be no community there. I sold a single ad – for $10 – at $0.01 CPC on a Quiz spot, then went to mattress. My arrangement used to be now not to launch the spot, but to throw fairly precise online page online traffic at it and search if any bugs cropped up that neither I nor my traffic had stumbled on. After I started working in the morning and had carried out catching up on my emails I particular to verify the spot and search if somebody had posted. There were over 100 posts and of us were using the spot exactly as supposed. No longer easiest that but there used to be about $0.50 in ad income already, which manner my month-to-month bustle price used to be procure-obvious from day one. I had bump into a astronomical match between folks that were already focused on asking and answering questions (the quiz spot I advertised on) and my product.

In each and each case I’m acquainted with, the system used to be to search out an present audience that had an hobby in the product in quiz and raise them on-board ASAP. If the procure were attach-new and no community web sites yet existed I would create one by building a non-community web spot that supplied a valuable provider, and building a community round that as soon as I dangle captive eyeballs. In diversified phrases, to belabor the level: I would launch with an present community.


YCombinator used to be a winning startup accelerator, then constructed HN.

The folks dull Stack Overflow ran a most in vogue weblog (Coding Horror)

In those cases they had a smarter-than-common population that had some shared hobby (e.g. “COMM-cohesion”.)

When those web sites came round, Google used to be recognizable as what it is this present day, but Fb used to be now not. Hyperlinking wasn’t seen as a criminal offense befriend then, and Google didn’t search natural search results as competition for paid promoting.

Circa 2000 I helped somebody create a web community of 400,000 in Brazil — the launch of that used to be sending 10,000 unsolicited mail emails, which got us 2,000 tag ups (as improbable as that sounds this present day.)

Be aware of retention. Even as you focal level on it is a laborious to procure of us, then it is the total extra necessary to prefer of us and to focal level on the creep of getting them to contribute.

I focal level on a form of parents that want to are trying marketing do now not perceive how grand work it takes. If I wished to advertise a concert at a college campus I would possibly perhaps perhaps question to attach up a (8.5×11) poster for every 10 college students or so. I search a form of of us print 1 poster per 1000 college students and procure in contact with it a day.

Some of us don’t desire to create additional designs and predict the printer, diversified of us don’t desire to exercise the $, diversified of us don’t desire to scramble to each and each building on campus.

Which you will doubtless be in a position to perhaps hear tales of somebody who got an mighty ruin (that 20% effective e mail blast is one) and wish you may procure one. Create now not let that wishing procure in the style of doing the laborious work, of course continually it appears you procure the “ruin” unintentionally must you are doing the “common” work.

Protect a ways from the Girardian (“mimetic”) traps that are popular in many areas. In reveal, enact now not be “segment of a herd” with out a properly-examined working out of why your actions succor you (incl. ‘your brain thinks that cocaine raises your utility characteristic but it doesn’t)

Namely, those “Like us on Fb” buttons feed files and location traffic befriend to Fb from a form of of websites. The ratio of engagement the field gets from those buttons is vastly lower than the engagement that the field gets.

If I used to be talking to possibilities on the cell phone and looking out out for to procure them to buy into a horrible deal like that I would possibly perhaps well dangle a laborious time, but when of us search that “all and sundry else is doing it”, or now not it’s laborious to procure of us to focal level on the implications through.

These web sites you mention all predate the Fb age. To linear state, “new communities are now not being created”. Even as you perceive nearer, new communities are being created but they are smaller and separated from the social media lamestream.


reddit and HN were very centered when they started out. Reddit used to be like 70% focus on about insist when it started. HN used to be very grand about building replace with VC cash (which wasn’t talked about all that grand when it started). They were additionally entirely intolerant of the nonsense you search in comments this present day. Inane jokes and poorly thought out statements shall be downvoted to hell. The foundation that boring comments shall be mocked is what made it so intellectual first and foremost.

Stack Overflow supplied the next substitute to expertsexchange, which used to be preventing with google over pointers on how to level notify material (be aware the scroll to the backside of professional sexchange to search the non paywalled solutions hack?)


Why enact you have to? So you will doubtless be ready to extract cash from them? Create now not. So you will doubtless be ready to dangle somebody to prefer an eye on and common and exercise vitality over? Create now not. So you will doubtless be ready to dangle the prestige and station of a community owner and/or excessive online page online traffic web spot owner and/or winning person? Create now not.

Get you ever seen that HN used to be first and foremost attach a small neighborhood of horny replace knowledgable of us, and progressively they trended in opposition to disengaging because it got too astronomical and busy and it grew to change into a crowd of jeering Redditor plebs like me? HN is a marketing machine for YCombinator, now not an exact community. If what you will want is admittedly “to create a astronomical spot with a form of customers”, the word “community” doesn’t really note, ask what you will want “how enact I create a spot which tempts huge numbers of informal customers?”.

Communities stop small. If your reason is you will want an arena the attach folks that like X can focus on about X then change into a reliable space for those of us to enact that, be impart, take dangle of the total time, invite appropriate of us to it and create it moving enough that they’ve reason to come befriend, create it about what they wish (will doubtless be a mailing list) in space of what you will want (“my new forum written in React with a cell app backed by an IRC channel!”). That can doubtless stop small – of us potentially already dangle an arena to inform about X, there would possibly be potentially a Reddit about X, and the precise factor they’ll be focused on is who else goes there (and who’s excluded), now not the attach it is or what instrument it makes exercise of. There’s manner extra community in 50 of us discussing a factor than in some mega-spot constructed for ad income. No longer grand prestige or excitement in that, though.


Don’t know why you’re being downvoted.

I’d add that it’s a form of labor moderating and dealing with the drama that online communities have a tendency to like.

In the intervening time there are additionally correct implications, with particular jurisdictions making you accountable for user-submitted notify material.

Unless you’re really alive to about developing a community of like-minded folks, I wouldn’t anguish.


Even when OP is admittedly alive to about, relate, designate collecting – I’m asking why folks that procure stamps must care that OP desires to rule an enormous community of them, why must they undergo it?

There must be extra in it for them than “OP desires to be responsible, so we can scramble to OP’s space and undergo OP’s principles”. And OP would possibly perhaps perhaps now not uncover what that’s as prolonged as OP is asking a general space like HN “how enact I procure the total designate collectors on my spot??” like they were collectible things, in space of going to a designate collecting neighborhood and becoming a member of and contributing and staring at what they’ll doubtless be missing that they enact now not know they are missing attributable to they are now not technical enough to be responsive to the total choices, which OP would possibly perhaps perhaps maybe create or contribute in opposition to.

but that’s certainly now not as thrilling as being responsible, which I’m cynically suggesting shall be OP’s motivation.


For what or now not it’s worth I focal level on that’s manner extra thrilling than being responsible. I used to be now not too prolonged ago enthusiastic (now not as a moderator) in a community that burned itself to the ground due nearly entirely to poor communique and scarcity of debate between the moderators and the participants themselves. This lead at as soon as from, I focal level on, the moderators having exactly the thought you criticize – they seen themselves as main and ruling the customers rather than supporting them. I’ve been thinking loads about how that would possibly perhaps well were steer clear off. Maybe the community can dangle survived if the scheme used to be structured in a manner that gave customers themselves enough vitality to withhold moderators to story. And even there would possibly be some diversified manner the flaws would possibly perhaps well were mitigated.

That’s exactly why folks that procure stamps must care. The community I discussed is long gone specifically attributable to the very invested participants would possibly perhaps perhaps now not enact anything referring to the self-destruction. And we knew we were powerless because it used to be all falling apart. At this level many shall be joyful to crawl to a brand new platform simply if it supplied some earn of ensures in opposition to a repeat. (Which I focal level on will doubtless be carried out by giving the moderators less vitality without compromising their skill to common. By some ability.)

As to your final level about becoming a member of and contributing, I’ve completed that. I’m here asking referring to the general pointers attributable to there are of us here who dangle walked the creep of fostering a community, or know folks that dangle.


> Unless you’re really alive to about developing a community of like-minded folks, I wouldn’t anguish.

I agree. I focal level on most communities are created thanks to a need for them, now not so grand attributable to somebody desires to like a community.


> “HN is a marketing machine for YCombinator, now not an exact community.”

I disagree, an enormous percentage of parents that are here for the moving articles and abnormal discussion, but have not any hobby in YCombinator at all…