Child/Teen Security in Online Communities

Child n Teen Security 03Recently I came into a situation which I want to share with you. I would love to hear your opinions about it.

I play an online game (one of these brain-dead click browser games which are perfect to „play“ during busy mom days) and met a girl in there. She was fourteen years old and pretty ingenuous when it came to information about her person.

As soon as she had joined our team she asked if we’d like her to introduce herself. Our team leader said something like „Well, if you are bored, feel free.“ so she told us her real-life first name, her exact birth date and that we could always ask if we would like to know more about her. When I looked into her profile to see her stats, I noticed she had linked to several social media profiles belonging to her. As I’m naturally curious about these, I quickly checked them. Continue reading

Creating Cool Content for Gaming: Cosplay’s & Co

This article is written for the (German) Blogparade „Geiler Content“ from talkabout.de. Anyway I’ll write in English as this is both the main language of my blog and of the western Gaming Industry.

Cool ContentCreating cool content is one of the biggest challenges in the daily life of a Community Manager. Not only do you need it to fill your channels with but also to engage customers, increase the bonding to the product or brand and to generate something lasting for the medium that never forgets.

When it comes to (especially non-casual) Gaming, Community Managers can be very thankful to have a Community that likes to engage with the products anyway. There are Let’s Players and Cosplayers, people writing awesome fan fictions or drawing gorgeous fan art. Last but not least there are all those filling up Game Wikis, publishing Gameplay Guides and maintaining Guild/Clan/Team Websites full of various Content.

We basically have Communities that are already creating cool content for free. Well, we all know there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch – you’ll need to review the Content (and that may include watching a full-length 90 Minutes Let’s Play before sharing it, to make sure it’s appropriate), you’ll need to manage when, where and how to publish it and of course you need to encourage your Community to create content.

And for the latter you need what every Community Manager should bring into his job anyway: lots of passion for your product(s). All of that costs your time and your time is being paid by the company you work for. When you use this content as your Community delivers it, you’ll just have no additional costs.

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5 Reasons Your Community Needs Trolling

5 reasons trolling

There is a tendency in the Internet to describe every online misbehavior as trolling.

  • Someone disturbing a feminist hashtag on Twitter with sock puppet accounts? TROLL!
  • Someone wrote „1st“ under a new YouTube Video? TROLL!
  • Someone impersonating a celebrity? TROLL!
  • Someone cyber-bullying a classmate? TROLL!
  • Someone threatening to rape and/or murder someone else? TROLL!

These are NOT trolls. These are assholes, criminals or simply bored kids, but they are NOT trolls.

„Trolling is a art“ [sic!]
(most likely Christopher Poole aka moot, founder of 4chan and Canvas)
„Trolls are making mischief“
(Donath, 1999)
„[Trolls] trigger or exacerbate conflict for the purposes of their own amusement / entertainment.“
(Hardaker, 2007)

//German readers may also find some information in my older article: „Konflikte als Entertainment: Trolling“  (Conflicts as Entertainment: Trolling)//

Trolls are an endangered species, hunted by uninformed Community Managers or Social Media Moderators, but every community should have at least one. And here are 5 Reasons why:

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10 Reasons why it suck’s to be female in the Gaming Industry

10 ReasonsThe Gaming Industry, just like other Tech Industries, is dominated by males. There are more men in total and more men in managing positions. There are even more male customers for games. So yeah it is a pretty male-dominant world I work in.

Working in the gaming industry for four years (more if you count in my voluntary work before) and being a member of the “gaming community” for some more years, I’ve seen things changing in the gaming industry, and could compare to changes outside the industry as well.

And yes, there were changes. In the games themselves unfortunately the change was to have more and more overly sexualized female characters. And in the industry behind? More women started to work in this industry, same as in other tech industries. However the approach to female co-workers didn’t change.

A little side note before I actually start: this may not apply to all gaming companies and I’d be more than happy to hear other female colleagues shouting out positive examples of a gender neutral work atmosphere in a gaming company.

Here is my personal Top 10 List of “Why it sucks to be female in the gaming industry.”

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