January262014
“The online disinhibition effect is a loosening (or complete abandonment) of social restrictions and inhibitions that would otherwise be present in normal face-to-face interaction during interactions with others on the Internet. This effect is caused by many factors, including dissociative anonymity, invisibility, asynchronicity, solipsistic introjection, dissociative imagination, and minimization of authority.” Online disinhibition effect - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
January192014
“1. A clear, tangible outcome. The best outcomes are widely recognized as important or fantastic.
2. An outrageous vision for the outcome.
3. A leader who can get people to get personally committed to the vision and the outcome.
4. Exceptionally capable people on the team – the best talent available.
5. A leader that the team respects.
6. A leader who gives the team members the information, recognition and latitude they need to deliver the outcome.
7. A leader who keeps the team focused without micro managing it.
8. A shabby workplace with access to all the equipment, materials, tools and training the team needs to deliver the outcome.
9. Team is protected from bureaucracy of the sponsor/sponsor organization.
10. The workplace enables collaboration.
11. Team is insulated from distractions.
12. There is one focus for the team – the outcome.
13. Team members have responsibilities that are aligned to their expertise, interests, and capabilities.
14. Team members are willing to work on what needs to be worked on when it needs to be worked on.
15. People don’t always get along but everyone wants to achieve the outcome so this common desire transcends individual conflicts.
16. Team members know that each team member has been personally selected for the team because he or she is most able to get the job done.
17. Failure is accepted; incompetence and disloyalty is not.
18. The team has a common enemy.
19. The team believes they are on a mission from God.
20. The team doesn’t realize their mission is impossible and impractical.
21. The team is physically separated from those not on the team but retains a linkage with the ultimate sponsors of the mission generally via the team leader(s).” 21 characteristics of great teams :: Zengestrom
January82014
“Honesty and bluntness, but not to the point of pain. Mutual respect, but not to the point of formality and stiffness. Shared values, so the group’s mission can carry it over the inevitable bumps. And, of course, actual achievement, so the group is supported by an appreciative community.” p145, The Collaborative Habit by Twyla Tharp
November282013
“The easy stuff on the other hand is just that.. easy. Just do something shocking/offensive/base. It is basically how one got attention in middle school. At some point when people’s desire to get the attention outweighed their need to express themselves in an authentic voice, they decide to become a shock jock.” Why there are so many Assholes on the Internet — Medium
November242013
“The far more common problem kids face when they go online comes from other kids: the hum of low-grade hostility, punctuated by truly damaging explosions, that is called cyberbullying.” How to Stop the Bullies - Emily Bazelon - The Atlantic
November102013

Burlington Ruby Conf 2013 Handcrafting Community by Carina C. Zona (by Confreaks)

November52013
“The key idea behind the knol project is to highlight authors.

Knols will include strong community tools. People will be able to submit comments, questions, edits, additional content, and so on. Anyone will be able to rate a knol or write a review of it. Knols will also include references and links to additional information. At the discretion of the author, a knol may include ads. If an author chooses to include ads, Google will provide the author with substantial revenue share from the proceeds of those ads.” Official Blog: Encouraging people to contribute knowledge
September142013
August132013

The threads of high-profile users are where some people experience the highest engagement. Lacking that level of engagement on their own posts, they see the spaces of a high-profile user as a town square.

But it’s not a town square. It’s a salon, hosted by a person. It doesn’t matter that we don’t legally own space on a social platform — each thread, ultimately, belongs to the person who created it. They have the right to ask anyone who joins in to keep the discussion on topic, or to watch their language. Perhaps more importantly, they have an obligation to the other people who have taken the time to make a thoughtful, on-topic comment. If someone runs into the discussion and begins attacking other people, or attempting to derail the discussion, as a good host, the original poster must take corrective measures.

A lot of people out there believe open is better, that we ought to let people come in and say whatever they want, that we must make our spaces a true forum. I’m not one of those people. I believe, first and foremost, in creating a safe space for my readers. That means being vigilant. It means deleting “hiiiiii” comments that serve no purpose and lead the discussion nowhere. It means kicking disruptive people out. It means interjecting when commenters are having an argument and, if resolution is impossible, providing a level of moderation that enables them to say what they think without attacking one another.

A.V. Flox - Google - BLOCKING ISN’T CENSORSHIP Some time ago, I removed a…
August12013

The consolations of homophily

Heterophily, like tolerance, is hard and not always worthwhile. When trying to create a productive/generative group we should ask if members contribute signal rather than noise. Do they add unique insight, data or effort? Is the group better without them? Are we more or less generative without them?

Not all dimensions of diversity or difference are helpful. The fabric of a productive group is delicate and held together by a shared belief that we are all acting in good faith. This manifests itself in the little kindnesses we offer each other. 

Remove that stream of kindness. Replace it with meanness. Where we had understanding for the foibles of others, install mockery. Now, where are we?

Tolerating mockery and mean-spiritedness is all it takes to dissolve the group’s fabric. Now dissent and difference and diversity are no longer seen as necessary texture but as targets to be lampooned into silence. 

It always starts as ‘harmless fun.’ This is code for the invisible assertion of privilege. There’s also sometimes an element of “speaking truth to power” which cloaks the initial stages in the bravery of rebellion.

When the ‘harmless fun’ hits someone the original rebels care about it’s usually too late as this phenomenon has become self-sustaining.

The only escape is to embrace Reed’s Law and create new spaces. These spaces are safe because they have doors. These can be open or shut or locked.  A shut or locked door may be protecting those inside or those outside. Either way everyone can find or create a community that fits their needs.

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