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  • From: "Nick Jenkins" <nickpj AT>
  • To: "WikiWorld" <wikiworld AT>
  • Subject: Re: [Wiki World] a metric for community
  • Date: Wed, 3 Oct 2007 18:02:16 +1000

> OK, so another interesting thing is: how many *active community
> members* are needed for an *active community*?

One active member = a soliloquy
Two active members = a conversation
>= Three active members = a community

(i.e. maybe an early sign of a community is that someone says something, then
someone corrects them, and then someone else tells them that they're both

When a community goes from being a community to an *active* community is
pretty subjective. Maybe it's when sub-communities start to appear? I.e. when
the original single community is sufficiently broad and noisy that people
feel the
desire to break it out into different parts / interests.

> Is there more to an active community than a collection of active
> community members?

Yes - interaction between the members. A site with people working off on
areas and never interacting is not an active community. It's just a group of
who happen to share a wiki.

> > > * Should the metric be proportional to the size of the wiki? Is that
> > > sensible?
> >
> > I don't think that it is relevant. If English Wikipedia has 2M
> > articles and 100 edits per minute, it doesn't makes it equal with some
> > other project which has 20K of articles and 1 edit per minute.
> That's not what I meant. What I meant was maybe on a tiny wiki, 5
> edits makes you an active community member. On English Wikipedia,
> maybe it is 100? Or is it still the same 5?

Isn't that partially also a metric for how "sticky", and how much interesting
and how old the site is? Also maybe people see themselves relative to other
in terms of determining whether they're an active community member or not - so
5 edits on a very small wiki probably does make you an active member, and on
Wikipedia it probably is 100 edits - because "active" can be a relative
measure -
i.e. active compared to whom - and I think the normal answer is "compared to
other people using the wiki".

-- All the best,

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