Posted in Club Penguin, Disney, kids, Nick, tween

SXSW07: Community Ecology: Finding Balance When Working with Fan Groups Panel

Community Ecology: Finding Balance When Working with Fan Groups Panel
Jake McKee Lead Samurai, Big in Japan (previously adult community manager at Lego)
Rebecca Newton Global Safety & Moderation Mgr, (Habbo/VMK) (previously with Israel Interactive and AOL)
Terrence Ryan Moderator,
Virginia Miracle Dir Word of Mouth Mktg, Brains on Fire (fiskar scrapbooking community – fisketeers) (previously with DELL)
Betsy Whalen Dir Mktg, Discovery Education

Regarding how live events work in conjunction with online community
– keep them small
– trust your community
Habbo’s virtual world found was best to keep virtual and real separate to maintainthe magic for their users

Open up questions to audience:

Question about how to control brand consistency in your community without a hub site, only grassroots
– you don’t – you help them understand any negative aspects, champion the positive
– get over your fear, community has openness/unpredictablilty and should be embraced
– don’t be upset, figure out a way to work with it
– treat your community like a relationship, with honesty and openness

Question about at what size does the community need to be before doing on its own
– how long should you stay on other social networks before making your own
– don’t focus on the tech, but rather what tech works for the community you have – example of a tangent communnity that spun off of discovery eucations community members
– clearly define your success measures (traffic, longevity, active periods)
– determine if there is a need and fill that need

Question from Cartoon Network – launching game and wanted to know about how to market
– make easy to share
– make the tagline palatable and easy for kids
– virtual world like Nicktropolis
– have a place for them to create their own games
– referenced Club Penguin

Question about online fundraising
– how to maximize
– how do you deal with “bad” community ideas
– be clear on parameters , unlimited scope is not good

Question on how to get your audience involved in the product design process
– contextualize it for your community
– determine the success measures
– identify your community leaders, give them the tipping point moment to become more involved
– communities are based on ego – play on that
– recognize people like to talk about the bad than the good, help them contextualize
– given them an opportunity (ask them).

Question about self policing flagging, etc and not hurting the community
– there is an illusion that there is free speech in an online community, but it is a public facing private area
– company needs to understand what abuse means, constructive criticism is not ness a bad thing
– common practice is the more opportunity you give the users to shape their community, the more active and engaged community you get, not vice versa

Question regarding how they deal with user feuds
– deal with them like children, put them in separate corners
– had to change the “ignore” tool to “ban chat” because users needed a stronger feeling word for their feuds
– be open and there for your users

Question regarding internal office community and how to make it succeed
– start small, in manageable chunks
– show examples on how easy it is (make it easy, of course)
– get your early adopters and make sure they are influencers for more commentary



Joi Podgorny has spent the better part of the past 2 decades working on the bleeding edge of the technology and entertainment industries, from content/brand development and production to leading international support, moderation, community and social teams. Most recently, Joi founded Good People Collective, a consulting agency focused on helping companies and organizations establish, assess and pivot their internal and external cultures to help maximize their potential. She and her team are currently working on an exciting new software project, combining corporate training and virtual reality.

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