Over the past 7 - 10 years I have played Massively Multiplayer Online(MMO) games. I have played Dark age of Camelot(DAoC), World of Warcraft, Warhammer, Lord of the Ring Online and host of other games for various periods of time. The draw to play each of these games is to hang out with friends, make new friends, and relax. The best and easiest way to obtain friends is to join a Guild, which provides you a set of people that are there to back you up and to help you out when help is needed. As you get to know these strangers over time, you get to know them as friends, with the chance opportunity to meet some of them in person, after only talking to them online via chat or Voice of IP.
Over the past year or so, my job has directed me to start working on bringing new technologies to help with collaboration, efficiency and communication. The program my team works on is called Enterprise 2.0, an industry term which means bringing Social Media/Networking capabilities within the organization (internally focused). As part of this program, I have had the pleasure of attending conferences and meeting people who are doing the very same thing in their companies. One very important group of people that I have gotten to know is a set of Enterprise 2.0 advocates that are part of a community called the 2.0 Adoption Council.
As part of the 2.0 adoption council, I just saw a reaction with the same amount of concern and angst that I had seen several times in my days playing DAoC and have seen periodically over my time playing in other MMOs and in various guilds. The interesting part is that while I have seen this type of reaction in other situations, I had not seen this type of reaction with the same amount of concern and angst.
The situation is that happened in the 2.0 Adoption Council was the announcement from one of its better known people that they were leaving the 2.0 Adoption Council because the person had decided that is was best to not be an active participant anymore. The reaction from the Council was exactly the same reaction I have seen in online gaming. Requests to ensure that squabbles external to the council do not distract. People pointing out that the policies we use might be the reason person XYZ has left. etc.
In both situations, when this occurs, the outcry is heard and then it is on the community to make a decision. Do they rebound and make things better than they were before, or do the do nothing and fold. Believe it or not, in most cases I have found that the community survives and becomes strong for it. They work hard to correct the issues that have become real and work to make life better for the community. This is what I am seeing in the 2.0 Adoption Council and I am proud that I am member.
Now I just have to get my act together to get myself more active to help make sure I do what I can to ensure the community does not fold.
Played MMOs and still do - current game is Lord of the Ring Online (LotRO). Having been part of the community for a while, I see many similarities between the two. I find that the community feel is very similar. There is the obvious leader (GM in MMOs, Community Leader). This job is a full time job that requires lots of attention. the community needs alot of feed and care