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(Methodology, Networked Governance)

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Stanley Wasserman
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David Gibson
(Social Networks, Interaction, Theory)

Yu-Ru Lin
(Networks, Visualization)

Ines Mergel
(Knowledge Sharing, Social Computing, Social Software, Government 20)

Maria Binz-Scharf
(Qualitative Methodology, Knowledge Sharing, eGovernment)

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« gaming google | Main | Show me your links and I tell you about your political ideology - Applying Network Theory to the War Blogosphere »

26 February 2007

Critical Mass in User Communities

A critical mass of users who actively engage in information exchange and knowledge sharing activities is crucial to keep an online community (of users) up and running over time. But how can critical mass in online communities be established and sustained over time? What are promising strateg(ies) for community operators to turn online communities into places that are worthwhile lingering?

One potential strategy can be observed in aSmallWorld.net which is a prominent online community. Critical mass was established by bringing together two types of people:

(1) celebrity-type people, and
(2) internet "aficionados" who love spending their time on the web and in interactive chat rooms.

While the celebrity-type people make sure that the site receives significant media and the general public's attention, internet "aficionados" generate the traffic which is important to make community look active.

Any other ideas how the creation of critical mass can be established?

Posted by Thomas Langenberg at February 26, 2007 5:14 AM