The value of recommendation

Nice example of the power of recommendation to build a community from Matt Rhodes’ FreshNetworks Blog:

The growth came from the constant and ongoing growth work that the community management team have been doing. But the final push came when another community member picked up on some of this activity and started to talk about our community on another site. We didn’t ask them to do this, they just thought we were offering something of interest to members of a very well read forum in the UK.

The result was immediate and notable. Overnight, our membership base increased five-fold and by the weekend we had a much larger number of members than we might have expected by the end of a full year of the community. And what was perhaps more important is that these new members joined the conversations and discussions on the site. Increasing number of members is fine, but what we really want to do is to increase the value of the community to all members. And this only really happens when people take part.

More slander than libel in online setting?

On Saturday I posted a piece on slander and libel in online networks, thanks to a piece from Matt at FreshNetworks, which followed a recent court case where defamation on a bulletin board was decreed to be slander rather than libel due to its conversational nature. Talking about it today with my IT colleague Paul (who has a precise way of thinking and is a master of MS Excel), he wondered whether defamatory blog posting as publication would be libel whereas a defamatory comment to a blog, would as conversation be counted as slander?