In October, I put together a Google Custom Search Engine to search the blogs of several online community thought leaders. Custom search engines are a great way to control where you search while restricting the search to a specified list of experts. I wanted to share another custom search engine for Industry Analysts. This is a way to find quick quotes and research on a specific topic just from the industry analyst sites specified below:
Now, the question for you. Who did I miss? What other industry analysts cover online communities and social media?
Related Fast Wonder Blog posts:
Yet another great research report coming from Bill Johnston of ForumOne. The topic of his latest report is Online Community Culture. 75 people participated in the study, so the sample size is fairly small, but is what you would expect from a niche survey of people managing online communities.
The study found that the most important factors in establishing and maintaining a community’s culture include:
- Quality, up-to-date content
- Clear objective / value statement
- Strong moderation / facilitation
My past experience managing communities leads me to agree wholeheartedly with the findings that these three factors are critical for having a healthy community culture.
- Communities without great, relevant content tend to wither away as participants decide to spend their valuable time in communities with higher quality content. The culture gradually disintegrates as key people leave. When I have spent some extra time creating content and encouraging other people to create great content, the community activity levels and culture seemed to show improvement.
- A clear objective / value statement for the community keeps everyone working toward the same goal. My worst experience managing communities came from an environment where there was disagreement among the top management at the company about the value and objectives for the community. It was impossible to build a community culture without a clear objective / value statement.
- Strong moderation / facilitation helps keep the community clean and on track. Members don’t want a community full of spam or other worthless content.
I encourage you to read the entire blog post about the Online Community Culture report (or the entire report if you are one of the lucky people with a subscription). The blog contains additional data points, quotes from the survey comments, and a great analysis near the end of the post.
Related Fast Wonder Blog posts:
Danah Boyd is currently compiling a list of social networking research articles and researchers. This is a great resource for those of us looking for numbers and research on web 2.0. Here is her request:
I want to track down everyone who is actively doing research on social network sites. (Clarification: i’m looking for folks that are publishing in peer-reviewed spaces, not just researching for their company or blog.) Nicole Ellison and i are plotting to bring ways to bring everyone together. I’m also looking to create a list of all known publications. I know there’s more than what i’m listing so i need your help. Please! (Quote from apophenia)
If you know of any additional research please drop a comment on her blog.