Community Development In The Cybersociety of the Future
Howard Rheingold is one of the best known writers on the topic of Virtual Communities. He discusses online community building in this talk given at The BBC Online Communities day in 1999.
Howard Rheingold discusses the work involved in building successful online communities. Communities dont grow on their own, but have to be nurtured and maintained. They have to be built around things people care about and want to come together to discuss, and they must have a social infrastructure governed by a simple social contract of civil discourse. Newcomers need to be welcomed, and experienced users need to be empowered and encouraged to set the example.