sjdixon

The Art of Community – Chapter 1

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Today I started reading “The Art of Community” by Jona Bacon. Jona is a manager of a large volunteer community for Ubuntu Linux. His success in the Ubuntu community, a large community around an open source Linux distribution, has given him some insights into what works and what does not work for a community.

A few things stood out for me in the first chapter, the first being that community is about a sense of belonging. We describe communities as having common goals and common interests, but at the end of the day, no matter the purpose, we all have a need to belong. The next piece that strikes a cord with me, is how he introduces and describes how “Social Capital” is the velcro (my word) that keeps us attached to the group. Our ability to collaborate with the group and be considered a part of the group grows with our social capital. Jona writes:

Social capital is the collective family of positive interactions between two or more people

Belonging and social capital are important concepts for a community and certainly we must “believe” in the community. Jono talks about a Community Manager also. He describes his role as a community manager like this:

I help to enable a worldwide collection of volunteers to work together to do things that make a difference to them.

Subheading: “Theory Versus Action: Action Wins” nuff said! This to me really sums it up. Just do it… try it… make something happen, and if it doesn’t work, try it a different way, but don’t give up!

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Written by sjdixon

November 9, 2009 at 7:57 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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