The overall empathy level of a community
October 23, 2018 10:41 AM Subscribe
"One of the first things I learned when I began researching discussion platforms two years ago is the importance of empathy as the fundamental basis of all stable long term communities. The goal of discussion software shouldn't be to teach you how to click the reply button, and how to make bold text, but how to engage in civilized online discussion with other human beings without that discussion inevitably breaking down into the collective howling of wolves. That's what the discussion software should be teaching you: Empathy. You. Me. Us. We can all occasionally use a gentle reminder that there is a real human being on the other side of our screen, a person remarkably like us."
If your community isn't capable of regularly exorcising the most toxic content, and the people responsible for that kind of content, it's in trouble. Those rare bad apples are group poison.
Hate is easy to recognize. Cruelty is easy to recognize. You do not tolerate these in your community, full stop.
But what about behavior that isn't so obviously corrosive? What about behavior patterns that seem sort of vaguely negative, but … nobody can show you exactly how this behavior is directly hurting anyone?
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