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About Rich

  • Richard Millington is the founder of FeverBee, a community consultancy and Professional Community Management course. Richard is also the author of Buzzing Communities: How To Build Bigger, Better, And More Active Online Communities. Richard's clients have included Google, AutoDesk, United Nations, Novartis, Wikipedia, Oracle, The World Bank, Diabetes Hands Foundation, Fidelity Investments, and many more. Richard is also the the author of the Online Community Manifesto.

    e-mail: richard@feverbee.com
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You are absolutely right: there is a difference between "strong common interest" and "community building".

The original quote came from Mark Zuckerberg via Jeff Jarvis: https://twitter.com/#!/jeffjarvis

"You don’t start communities, [Mark Zuckerberg] said. Communities already exist. They’re already doing what they want to do. The question you should ask is how you can help them do that better."

The word "community" is used for so many different meanings that those two work in their own context. "They're already doing what they want to do" stands here for "strong common interest".

You are reminding me that, when talking about communities with clients, we have to begin with a definition. Mine is "Hosting the exchanges of registered members about a shared interest, with at least one space of collective activities." And then I have to explain carefully every word: "hosting", "member", etc. :-)

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The question you should ask is how you can help them do that better."

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