- Local time
- Sep 24, 2019
The web community is an incredible thing. Enormously passionate, diverse, generous and interactive. Being able to work in an industry where there is so many community members always offering their support, wisdom and kindness is the greatest gift.
You have probably noticed a shift in the past couple of years that involves many members of our industry community heading back towards the days of personal websites and blogging. Owning their content. A shift driven by a disdain for the way content creators and users are treated by the few large centralised platforms.
Well, another thing that is well overdue a comeback is the forum. The online forum world is still well alive and kicking in many niches but the contenders in this space are lackluster. Social media simply can't come close to the level of community, quality and organisation that a well managed forum platform can offer.
On a smaller community platform users can be in better control of their content and be assured there is a community team with the communities interest at its heart as opposed to shareholder profits and influence.
Of course Webwide offers all of the things you would expect from a decent industry community platform, including:
- 👋 Meeting new people
- 💬 Discussing industry news
- 🧠 Learning from others and sharing own experiences
- 💫 Showcase your work
- 💪 Compete in friendly community challenges
- 📣 Promote your content
- 🎉 Celebrate your achievements
- 🤝 Make new industry connections
- ✅ Strong community-driven Code of Conduct
|❌ Conversations can lack context||✅ Conversations have full context|
|❌ Without followers it can be impossible to be heard||✅ Visibility is not determined by individual popularity|
|❌ Limited to 280 characters or awkward threads, easy for a single tweet to be taken out of context||✅ Communicate with more nuance without the shackles of 280 characters|
|❌ Ephemeral content that once Tweeted is gone within hours, can feel under pressure to keep up.||✅ Easy to keep on top of and filter out topics you are not interested in. No pressure to be always online.|
|❌ Easy to get trapped in following bubbles with a lack of diverse outside input.||✅ Attracting community members in a programming language and platform agnostic way.|
|❌ Poor code formatting||✅ Easy inline code snippets|
|❌ Relaxed community standards and slow moderation||✅ Strict community standards and actively moderated|
|❌ Multi-threaded comment sections can quickly break down in to off-topic discussions, often arguments||✅ Single-threaded discussions remain more on-topic|
|❌ Very anonymous profiles without sense of community||✅ Profiles with character that can still remain pseudo-anonymous while building up a sense of identity and community|
|❌ Visibility determined by popularity of subject matter rather than quality of discussion||✅ Visibility determined by quality and frequency of discussion instead|
|❌ Often unable to self-promote even when sharing quality content||✅ Promotion of own content more than welcome|
|❌ Relaxed community standards and mixed moderation||✅ Strict community standards and actively moderated|
#️⃣ Slack (or other chat groups)
|❌ Conversations can quickly disappear or be missed without active participation||✅ Multiple conversations all waiting right where you left off whenever you decide to return|
|❌ Poor organisation of individual topics||✅ Total organisation of all discussions|
|❌ Difficult to moderate and enforce community standards||✅ Strict community standards and actively moderated|
We are not necessarily looking to totally replace platforms such as these in your day however I hope you can agree that there are many benefits for certain types of conversation and community on a platform such as Webwide.
Creating and keeping an engaged community can be very difficult; the state of some of the neglected older forums in this space speak for themselves. I hope to achieve this through:
- Encouraging members to post project updates, showcase their work, request critiques and ask for help when needed which can drive return visits with immediate benefit for the member
- Running regular scheduled events and community challenges
- Creating new and novel features that drive curiosity and engagement
- Give space to nurture beginner members who can give back as they progress through their learning
- Rewarding (never bribing) advocate members with increased visibility via social feeds/newsletters/announcements
- Dedicating consistent time to attracting fresh faces to the platform
- Create partnerships with other non-competing platforms such as blogs and tutorial websites
Creating an account takes less than 30 seconds and you can start participating right away.