Can you shoot me an email with the person’s profile? I’ll be honest, my inclination is to suspend first, ask questions later. LOL Somebody who’s legit will always say, “Hey wait a minute, I’m not spam”, but you know how often that happens? Maybe one time out of 50. Maybe less than that. Most of the time, our instincts are correct.
re: leadership, a longer story, but one that I need to start telling, because we need to fix this.
So, once upon a time, we worked hard to recruit leaders, and train them in what we needed them to do. I say “we”, but there was a time when I was just another member who was being recruited. The idea was to teach these leaders the ins-and-outs of the mechanics of the site so that they could answer questions about that, but more important, to help them identify the good things and bad things happening in the site, and help us do something about it.
Exactly as you’ve done here. But also things like, helping turn down the heat when conversations get too intense, so on. Making a point to respond not like a dick, and calling out other members who are being dicks.
Life goes on, things happen, and as the site got so big that we couldn’t manage it with our small team, we introduced a bit of auto-piloting, to elevate people who posted a lot. Well, that’s not necessarily the same as being an actual helper…but that’s fine. If all somebody wants out of their experience in the COW is to answer a lot of questions, blessings on their house! We love it!
(Although, as it happened, a large-ish number of folks who answered a lot of questions could often be dicks about it. We’ve sent a number of those folks away, and have put a couple more on probation. We are actively working on reorienting the COW around niceness, which used to be its hallmark.)
But we’re also looking for people who are willing to step up and do more than just answer questions. There are whole branches of the site that we’ve yet to launch where we’re going to need that kind of help.
For example, we want to launch social groups for COW members to share things that interest them beyond work, but without the invasiveness of something like Facebook or other platforms that track and share your data. (All of our tracking is anonymous, and we NEVER share it with ANYONE.) Stuff like photography, travel, TV and movie watching, musical instruments we play. Anything really.
We’d like to give people the power to start their own groups, which they would manage themselves, without our intervention, as long as those groups follow the same general rules as the rest of the COW (things like no politics, no religion, family-friendly language, etc.). So for those, we’d need people willing to take some sense of ownership for these groups.
You also mentioned badges. Those are definitely coming too. We want a bunch of ’em. Things like posting milestones (5000 posts), time milestones (member for 10 years), this person is an author in our library, and yes, this person is a leader, someone with a combination of experience, authority, and helpfulness.
I really can’t overstate how close to the beginning of things we are here at the COW right now. Six months into the development of what you see before you today, I think we’re going to build more in the next year than we built in our first 20 years.
Anyway, send me an email with more details about this account that you’re watching, and I’ll look into it too.