Every day I get emails from all kinds of fun people who are getting started on the journey of building an online community. Some of them want advice, and I'm happy to help wherever I can.
I always say to take my $0.02 for whatever it's worth, and ignore me if something works better for you. Also, I'm focusing here on online communities, but they share many of the same characteristics as offline ones.
In the 279 Days report, I wrote about the practical aspects of community building. We looked at RSS vs. email, how to create an e-book, and so on.
This post will look more closely at the underlying philosophy of a community. First of all, what makes a community? Definitions abound, but here's mine:
A community is a group of people united through a common struggle with the same stories.
Let's look at the definition and related features in more detail.