The Strunk and White for online forums. … As someone who’s been in this business since before it was a business, I can attest that I still refer to this book when writing, researching, consulting or training. It’s one of the few community books I own with the yellow highlighting, dog-eared pages and lots of ink in the margins.
Within 20 minutes, I was on page 70. Perhaps it was my interest in the topic, perhaps O’Keefe’s writing style. Whatever the reason, the book (at just over 300 pages) was a quick and easy read, chock full of great information, advice and examples and left me feeling like I should give online forum management a try. Perhaps the best thing I can say about the writing style is that it isn’t written from the perspective of a haughty expert peppering you with polysyllabic words and ethereal internet philosophy. O’Keefe has something to say and he says it, plain and simple.
The level of detail in this book is startling, with a glossary, and an entire section of templates that you can use to craft content posting policies, and communicate with members and staff in a variety of situations (some uncomfortable). If you or your company run an online forum, this is an invaluable reference, and you’ll come back to it with great regularity as situations arise that require its counsel.
Online forums make up the very foundation of the social web. Unfortunately, there are few resources for the growing number of people who work behind the scenes to make them successful. In this comprehensive book, Patrick O’Keefe brings his real-world experiences to bear in the form of strategies, tactics, and ideas that fill a knowledge gap that has begged to be filled for too long.
– Lee LeFever, Principal, Common Craft
Patrick O’Keefe has been building online communities for nearly ten years. He’s got more expertise and experience than anyone else when it comes to leveraging the power of community. Read this book and you’ll save time and frustration. Best of all, you’ll get results.
– Zack Urlocker, Chief Operating Officer, Duo Security
I thought I’d been doing community work long enough that I wouldn’t find much new in this book. I was flat wrong. While some of the more technical discussion wasn’t relevant to my needs, the rest of the book is a treasure trove of ideas and tips for effectively managing communities.
It’s fabulous. I think the name is a little deceptive because when I think online forums, I think like the 90s, an actual online forum. But, it’s so much more about community and creating that – creating successful communities. … It’s just an excellent book. I highly recommend it.
This was a brilliant read and I highly recommend Managing Online Forums for both new as well as veteran forum administrators. Patrick has distilled the essence of what it takes to run a vital community without getting mired in the technology or overly psychological. I have been successfully running the world’s largest community for scuba diving for years and I still learned a lot! You can bet that I will be rereading this as well as having my entire staff read it. It deals with real-world scenarios, and it’s obvious Patrick writes from his experiences as well as his heart.”
– Pete Murray, Owner, ScubaBoard.com
One of the biggest questions I get is how to start a forum. I also get asked how to run a forum, best ways to manage your community, what to do when this or that happens… every single time, I recommend the exact same thing: a book by Patrick O’Keefe – Managing Online Forums. It is THE book on starting and managing a successful online community.
Managing Online Forums has a very readable, conversational style, which I found congenial. It would perhaps have been easier for the author to write more of a “shopping list” of things to do and not do, but I for one would probably have found such an approach not only boring to read but less than convincing. With Managing Online Forums, I felt I was in the presence of a master, who had not only “been there, done that” but had reflected long and deeply on what works and what doesn’t.
This book is great advice for anyone managing an online community or thinking of creating one. Managing Online Forums is full of practical, specific advice from someone who has obviously had more than just a few tours of duty in the online trenches. O’Keefe covers all aspects of the job, providing many words of warning and wisdom along the way. This book should be required reading for all online community managers.
– Jo Burba, Live Director, ZeniMax Online Studios
The comprehensive templates for your user agreement, member contacts, and policies alone make it worth the price of the book. Managing Online Forums should be a reference manual for every administrator in the world of virtual communities.
– Cynthia Mosher, Web Director, Mothering Magazine
Patrick O’Keefe has run one of the most prominent Yankees fan sites online, and he knows of what he writes. Managing Online Forums is full of insight and information, well-written, and very deserving of a wide readership.
I’ve run online communities for many years, and Managing Online Forums opened my eyes to many things I could do better. It’s required reading for novices and experienced administrators alike.
– Jared W. Smith, Development Manager, Consumer, BoomTown and co-author, Building Online Communities with Drupal, phpBB, and WordPress