Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Art of Community by Jono Bacon

The Art of Community by Jono Bacon

From Ants to Anteaters, Bees to Beekeepers…
I have definitely become enlightened on the complex process of community building.
The Art of Community is a simple guide to creating, building and maintaing communities. In this book, Jono Bacon breaks down community management so carefully that I think anyone could start their own online community.
The message in this book is simply this; the worldwide internet community is no different from your neighborhood. A sense of belonging and security is what keeps us there- from forum threads to blogs to mailing lists.
Community building is simply a general art form that we can all learn to be good at just as children learn social skills over time. We need to know how to communicate clearly, create interest and get others on board. Also, he dealt with supporting workflow with tools, governance, handling conflicts on online communities and how to avoid frustration, while dealing with the reality that conflicts could and will arise wherever you have people gathering for a cause or shared interest.

I wish that I had this book last year when I did my Communication Studies. Jono shared a lot about communicating clearly, and gaining and keeping your audience.
He also shared many personal experiences, but I however did not find many of them easy to relate to so their effects were minimal. They included mostly his work world and I think that he could have tried to apply some of his theories to other experiences or other ‘worlds’ beyond the computer world. Like the work of a teacher and the little community in his/her class just to be more practical.
This book however appealed to me personally and I would recommend it to anyone. As members of many smaller communities I think we all need to learn to the art of communication in order for our communities to thrive.

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