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

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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.

Continue reading

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:

Continue reading

Why “Don’t feed the trolls” does not apply to Community Managers

Troll Feeding as CMAfter my posts “Don’t feed the trolls – Enchant them” and “Konflikte als Entertainment – Trolling“, I was asked why I am of the opinion that “Don’t feed the trolls” does not apply to Community Managers. Short answer:

Community Managers are sometimes described as Piñatas, as Jack/Jills of all Trades – or as zookeepers.

And while I would not say trolls or any other community members are animals; in a zoo no one feeds the lions – except for the zookeeper.

Trolls are Community Members, wether you like them or not. And as such Community Managers have to deal with them.