Organizational Structure of an Intelligent Web CommunityPosted: October 27, 2008 | |
Like with any great endeavor there is always a Master Architect. With Linux it was Linus. The Master Architect cannot do it all alone and needs a team of Benevolent Guardians to maintain the platform and maintain order within the community. These roles should stay with the technology platform domain and let the community dynamically morph into what its collective user based mind wills it.
Being recognized by a group of piers is a strong motivator for the community driven generation C. As in any hive like community there are the workers, the protectors and those in charge of growing the community. In a web community format the workers would equate to the masses. The work that they do is generate content and network transactions. The create the social clue that forms the honey comb structure of the community. The more personal the interactions are the stronger the structure is. The protectors are equal to the alpha members of the community. They are the most active and most highly regarded by their piers with relation to the quality of the content they produce. Those in charge of growing the community are the ambassadors. They are measured based on their virility in terms of recruiting new members. They may not be the biggest contributors, but they are highly networked in multiple communities and have the skill to excite others to join. Ambassadors also serve an internal function of introducing members to each other strengthening internal structures.
Unlike in an insect hive the social order is based on a meritocracy. Recognition is a function of activity and pier endorsement. Pier endorsement gains relevancy only through numbers, as in the Digg portal. Thus pier endorsements reflect the collective will of the community. Only those that are aligned with the collective mind of the community will rise in the social order.
In nature roles are predefined, but in a web hive roles are grown into based on intellectual and social merit.
Above all there is the collective will of the hive that is totally resilient to subversion by an individual or even a group due to the sheer volume of community members. The will is ever changing and dynamic. The will is real time due to Twitter like features. The top 3 ambassadors are given the right to officially represent the interests of the community towards external parties through the community foundation. Democratically endorsed officials that the community can replace the next day and not have to wait four years.
If a community of this type grows to a size similar to Facebook (132 million unique visitors), it would have significant power over corporations and political parties.
Imagine if the foundation for such a community was religious in nature.