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Episodes

The Struggle to Ban Alex Jones + Membership Models for News Organizations

8/13/2018
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There’s so much to unpack in this extremely timely chat with Jay Rosen. Jay teaches journalism at New York University and on this episode of Community Signal, he discusses an era of journalism where readers hold the power. The power of choice, the power to talk back to journalists and media organizations, and the power to rally with their fellow readers. And with this shift in power comes a (positive) shift in responsibilities for journalists. Interestingly enough, technology platforms...

Duration:00:49:37

No Room for Holocaust Deniers

7/30/2018
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As community professionals, it’s our duty to create inclusive spaces for our community members. This means setting the stage for them and making sure that they have everything they need to be successful within the community, and in some cases, protecting them from hate-driven vitriol. And while many of us have created clear guidelines explaining that hate speech and violence are not permitted in our communities, platforms like Facebook and Reddit have had a harder time defending their...

Duration:00:30:02

The Value of Developer Relations

7/16/2018
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Every community professional has had the challenge of explaining their role and job duties to others within their organization. For many of us, that means always being prepared with qualitative and quantitative anecdotes that ladder up to our company’s mission and goals. In this episode of Community Signal, Mary Thengvall also explains the importance of tailoring the message of what we do to the person we’re speaking with, whether it’s our boss, the CEO, or CFO. If you’re in need of tips...

Duration:00:46:27

Higher Education’s Troll Hunter

7/2/2018
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Great teachers always seem to have command over their classroom, but what happens if your classroom meets online and has thousands of students? Even the greatest teachers in these situations might need the help of a troll hunter like Tanja de Bie. While Tanja dubs herself a troll hunter, she’s also a mediator and a teacher in her own right. She recognizes that in higher education communities, it’s often the responsibility of the moderator to teach students how to put their emotions aside...

Duration:00:41:19

Community Management in France

6/18/2018
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The role “community manager” can mean different things at different companies and the responsibilities for this role can often be conflated across different teams and areas of expertise. But how does this role translate across different continents and cultures? In this episode of Community Signal, Patrick and Jean-Yves Lemesle discuss just that. Jean-Yves is an experienced social media and community manager and he shares how both of these areas of expertise, social media management and...

Duration:00:34:18

Acing Your Next Community Job Search

6/3/2018
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When was the last time you looked at your resume? How about the last time you wrote down a list of everything you’ve worked on and accomplished at your current gig? If it’s been a while, this episode is going to come with some homework afterward. Maria Ogneva, who has held senior community roles at companies like LinkedIn, Salesforce and Yammer, shares the story of how she turned a lost job into a “fun” journey. Fun is in quotes there because I’m sure that for most of us, the job hunt is...

Duration:00:39:27

Never Put All of Your Eggs in One Community Basket

5/21/2018
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Can you recall the community-related news and trends of last summer? Let us refresh your memory. YouTube announced new guidelines for advertisers that inadvertently led to significant changes in revenue for many creators on its platform. Photobucket broke countless images across the web without notice. The city of Charlottesville, Virginia was descended upon by white supremacists during the violent, hateful, and deadly Unite the Right rally, yet Twitter still gave them (and still gives...

Duration:00:37:18

When Community Managers and Middle Managers Join Forces

5/7/2018
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Think about the last time you were working on a new product, tool, or resource for your community. You probably looked through feedback that they had shared with you and compiled a list of all the needs they have. You created a “use case utopia” that you thought would be well-received by your community and internal stakeholders. As Jakkii Musgrave shares in this episode of Community Signal, use case utopias can be easily conceived, but not so easily implemented without the guidance of...

Duration:00:40:40

Snapchat Story-Sized Humanity

4/23/2018
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What brings you to your favorite social networks? Is it the people that you know you’ll find there or the topics and content that you know you’ll be able to discover? In this episode of Community Signal, we dive deep into what Chris Brogan, a digital marketing expert and New York Times bestselling author, thinks he wants from social networks and conversely, how he observes his children using Twitter, SoundCloud, and more. The gaming industry is at the forefront of this conversation. Chris...

Duration:00:40:26

Building a Community That Won’t Cash Out

4/9/2018
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RPG (RolePlayGateway), a community of game designers, world builders, and storytellers scripting entire universes, is entering its 14th year of existence. And while RPG founder Eric Martindaleknows that some members of the community might move on, he’s in it for the long haul. He’s energized by the relationships that he’s seen members of the RPG community build and the excitement behind INK, a Bitcoin-backed digital currency that people within the community are using to tip one another for...

Duration:00:40:21

LEGO Wasn’t Always Open to Your Ideas

3/26/2018
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LEGO might be open to your ideas now, but it wasn’t always like that. Afraid of legal blowback, they once turned away ideas – and largely ignored their adult fan base. Jake McKee helped form LEGO’s first community team, and usher in a new era of openness at the company. He opened the lines of communication between adult consumers of their products, who had more discretionary income than the kids, driving home the understanding that LEGO was not just a child’s toy company. Plus: Our...

Duration:00:48:43

When the Secret Service Visits You Because of Your Community

3/12/2018
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Once worried that big social media companies would displace online forums, Vlad Dusil is now “pretty damn confident” that niche forums are not only alive and well, but here to stay. He’s the COO and co-founder of PurseBlog, including PurseForum, a flourishing community of over 550,000 fans of luxury handbags. Together, Vlad and his co-founder and wife Meaghan are building a trusted community of luxury handbag enthusiasts and authenticators. We discuss: Our Podcast is Made Possible...

Duration:00:47:42

He Hacked My Website

2/26/2018
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Jared Smith found my community when we were both teenagers. He got to see me early in my career. He became a great contributor to the community, as well as a moderator. He also hacked my website. In high school, he couldn’t find any other Van Halen fans, so he joined an online community. That took him down a road that led to him co-authoring 2005’s Building Online Communities with Drupal, phpBB, and WordPress, and building a career. Plus: Our Podcast is Made Possible By… If you enjoy...

Duration:00:40:50

Why Ubisoft Created a Community Content Team

2/12/2018
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Ubisoft’s community content team helps the gaming company’s community developers and managers by creating polished content, inspired by and sometimes derived from the community. After spending time as a community developer himself, Zack Cooper was tapped to start this team, and has led it for the last 3 and a half years. We discuss: Our Podcast is Made Possible By… If you enjoy our show, please know that it’s only possible with the generous support of our sponsor: Open Social. Big...

Duration:00:30:54

From Civil Engineer to Community Manager

1/29/2018
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Lana Lee spent 15 years as a civil and structural engineer, before switching careers and, shortly thereafter, becoming a community manager. On this episode of the show, we discuss what drove that change and the similarities between the two roles. Plus: Our Podcast is Made Possible By… If you enjoy our show, please know that it’s only possible with the generous support of our sponsor: Higher Logic. Big Quotes Our transcript was not finished prior to release. Because of this, our quotes...

Duration:00:33:23

Ending the Millennial Conversation, Customer Experience Insurance and Other Short Stories

1/8/2018
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Not every segment we record on Community Signal makes it into the final episode. One of the perks of being a supporter of the show on Patreon is being among the first to hear bonus clips and cut for time extras. That’s what this episode consists of: A group of clips that were released to Patreon supporters between June and July 0f 2017 and have only been heard by them – until now. With new insights from past guests Maggie McGary, Christopher Carfi, Kim England, Tracey Todd, Bob Hubbard,...

Duration:00:38:15

The Making of Community Signal (Episode #100)

1/1/2018
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For the 100th episode of Community Signal, we're talking about the show itself. How it came to be, what drives it and how we make it each week. My guest is the producer of all 100 episodes, Karn Broad. Karn is my creative partner in the show, but if he does his job well, you never think about it. This episode really gives you a sense of the rapport than Karn and I have, and how we work together every week to produce Community Signal. Plus: Our Podcast is Made Possible By... If you...

Duration:00:48:58

90%+ of Members Felt Less Alone After Joining This Community

12/18/2017
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Sue Ryder, a well-known charity in the UK, provides support for end of life care and bereavement. In 2015, after more than 60 years of operation, they launched an online community. For a majority of the its members, the community serves as the first touch point between them and the organization. Not only that, but in a survey, more than 90% of members said that the community made them feel less alone and more able to cope with their situation. Community manager Priscilla McClay joins the...

Duration:00:29:29

Online Communities in the Post-Facebook Era

12/11/2017
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Matt Mecham's code has powered far too many online communities to count. Developing popular online community software since 2001, he worked on YaBB and founded Ikonboard, before co-founding Invision Power Services, the company behind Invision Community. Given his long view of the industry, Matt sees the timeline of online community as progressing through a few eras: The early years, when he began developing software. The middle years, where platforms became more cognizant of UI...

Duration:00:44:26

How Community Platforms Address the Member Life Cycle

12/4/2017
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When a member makes a post on your community, there is a status associated with that post. How long they have been a member, how many contributions they have, their reputation, whether or not they are a staff member – all of these things impact their status. While the content of the post may remain the same, the status of the member changes, as their reputation does or they are removed from staff. Still, when you view their post – old, new, good or poor – only their current status tends...

Duration:00:26:33