SXSWi2009: From Flickr and Beyond: Lessons in Community Management

Panelists: Heather Champ – flickr, Mario Anima – CurrentTV, Matthew Stinchcomb – Etsy, Jessamyn West – MetaFilter (aside – LIBRARIANS ROCK), and Micah Schaffer – YouTube

Excellent – Jessamyn introduced the Metafilter part of her jobs, then mentioned I’m a public librarian in my day job. Awesomeness.

Metafilter didn’t have moderation for about the first 5 years. Started out as some dude’s blog, and grew from there. They recently added flagging, to mark content as breaking the guidelines.

Youtube – harder to perceive trends as they grew. They’re figuring out how to do it by slicing metrics in different ways

Etsy – Challenge – how to grow big but to stay small at the same time. A goal – make sre they’re having a dialogue. Have to remember the community is king before they do anything.

CurrentTV – they have different types of communities, ie., viewers and producers – they have to balance that.

They all mentioned mean names their communities have called them at times.

The YouTube guy – probably speaking the truth about YouTUbe – but he’s talking about bikinis and sex a lot. His point was that their site has a diversity of content, and sometimes you might not want, say, a bikini to mix with your hedgehog videos.

(aside – dude – don’t sit by two women and say “the internet’s about sex” and talk about liking bikini videos. Just sayin.

CurrentTV guy talks about content of conversations. IE., your comment will be taken down if you say “I will hunt you down …” etc. They actually say edit that out, and we’ll put it back up.

YouTube – criticism is good. They have to balance good, constructive criticism with crazy person criticism.

Flickr – Heather has learned when NOT to respond. She lets craxy people “dig their hole to crazy town” by not responding – it allows the community to notice and ignore the crazy person.

CurrentTV has multiple ways to deliver feedback – email, twitter, video responses, etc.

Etsy agrees – communicate in as many ways as possible.

YouTube – realize you’ll have to adapt your policies and guidelines as your site and your product evolve.

Etsy – people use site and communicate in ways you don’t expect – because of that, they have to revisit their policies every few months.

Metafilter – be able to explain your rules, and why you think that rule is a good one

Q&A now:

Q: How do you get community engagement in flickr?

A: You get what you give. You have to participate in groups for example. I’d add that you have to have a real community / network first – they’ll view and comment. Also wondering if he’s actually ASKED for comments?

Q: Does YouTube delete comments?

A: Their community guidelines apply to comments. Comments are the lowest barrier to entry at YouTube – it’s easy.

A: Allow members to determine what’s ok and what’s not.

Q: question about being logged in and being stupid …

A: Etsy – login name is same as their shop name, so your reputation follows you big time.

Q: Clay Shirky asked a question – funniest thing with community disagreeing with them…

A: Jessamyn – they banned someone, community started an “unban this user” …

A: Etsy – the Etsy 5 thing …

A: CurrentTV – a guy constantly complained a lot, then “asked for a divorce”

Q: what happens when another user community invades your own

A: flickr … you have to protect your own community first, really watch it – she gave a few examples. She calls them community crashers

SXSWi2009: The Future of Social Networks

#sxswfsn is the hashtag

Charlene Li

Her paradigm – social networks will be like air. They will be where/when we need them – not site-dependant

Shopping as an example
– walk into a store, you see people.
– “walk into amazon” – who do you see?
– Showed a mockup of filtering reviews to people you know

Even TV is getting social
– newscasters have been inserting twitter hashtags into the news ticker feed
– Charlene really wanted to just see what her friends thought
– some set top boxes have this functionality

Enterprise networks are starting to be social, too.

Three things are needed to make social networks like air
1. Identity – who you are
2. contacts – who you know
3. Activities – what you do

Two sets of standards/rules that exist right now
– Facebook
– Open Stack

Many, myriad identities:
– she’s an author/writer person
– she’s a mom
– doesn’t want to blend necessarily

Friend management is tough
– facebook now lets you sort friends into groups
– she friended her co-author … at least 20 different times in a variety of places – why isn’t is just once?

Have to put our trust in someone
– with identity, with contacts, with activity stream

Talking about social algorithms
– ex. gmail showing your top 20 contacts without you asking for it

What gets everyone to be open?
– the money
– ex – Facebook Connect taps into offsite – this gave them more awareness, more people, more views
– ex – earthwatch trip

Talking about ads that can appear on many different networks

The Rise of the personal CPM

What should you be doing to prepare?
1. evaluate where social makes sense
2. think about your back end
3. prepare to integrate social networks into your organization

The idea of a flipped org chart with customer on top, ceo on bottom

I sent a twitter hashtag comment/question – her whole point is that social networks are like air. But then she’s basically suggesting that we should control where the “air” is and is not. So my comment – But if it’s like air, you can’t choose where SNs makes sense and where they don’t – it would be everywhere no matter what, right?

SXSWi2009: Change (v2)

Speaker – Lawrence Lessig

aside – GREAT speaker. Fun use of Keynote, well-paced.

He’s talking about current issues – scientists taking large sums of money from drug companies … and then they “approve” a drug, other similar money things (ie., lobbyists)

Money is not evil

These dependencies weaken trust
– scientists say it’s ridiculous to say that the money they get affects their viewpoints
– politicians say the same thing

Wow – basically showing how lobbyists influence government. Scary.

His point – government gets easy 2+2=4 style questions wrong, because they are guided by dependencies that guide them the wrong way

Now talking about government-regulation / extortion problems

A great way to change this:
– only taking donations from citizens, each person capped at $250
– another idea – don’t give any more money to politicians until they agree to this.
– His site – http://change-congress.org/

SXSWi2009: Integrated Multimedia (IM) Video Journalism

Speaker – David Dunkley Gyimah

Starts in 1994 … and it relates to video journalism today
– read a definition of video journalism from 1994
– They were called VJs

gave an example of how he does different cuts for a video interview – he does it quickly

Shoot with the edit in mind – so your goal is to shoot the final product

If he shot this session, he’d take 4-5 shots of the room, no more than 30 seconds wort, then do a quick interview with the speaker later

2005 – the bottleneck – new theories are appearing.
– how does this inform what we do?
– called 2005 the “what if” year
– there’s now more of an integrated design aesthetic – you do the interview, the video, the web page, the promo, the design that stretches across all of those things (hence the title of this presentation)

Played a clip of Tom Kennedy, former head of video at the washington post – basically said video journalism is simply allowing other people to tell their stories.

Q&A – what can we do with iMovie and a cheap camera? Answer – it’s not the gear, but about what you do with it