__/ [ Ignoramus16172 ] on Saturday 04 March 2006 04:49 \__
> So... I have this website algebra.com, 280 free tutors, 4,000+
> registered users, a hundred modules covering various topics, 200+ user
> contributed lessons, 14,000+ problems solved by tutors, a pretty
> active web forum, etc.
John and I convinced you to add RSS feeds. How's that coming along,
> I feel that I am not doing enough to foster a true community.
> Something where people interact towards a common goal which is
> learning math.
Probably covered by the forum, unless you intend to enrich it somehow.
> Communications are mostly one way (tutors to students and tutors
> "broadcasting") their lessons.
> I had my ass kicked in alt.www.webmaster and people rightly said that
> I should get busy doing community stuff.
> My idea is as follows. In every module, I would have "top 5" links to
> lessons on OTHER websites (on related topics), and "top 5" links to
> calculators from other sites. Anyone would be free to propose a link
> and anyone would be free to vote. The "weight" of the vote would
> increase with the "score" of the user (the score system already
Your site could become a linking authority rather than a content farm. It's
up to you which path suits you better. Bear in mind that linkage invites
spam (thus maintenance).
> I could require that any website linked from algebra.com should have a
There is no reliable way for checking reciprocity automatically.
> The benefits are, more community and participation and, most
> importantly, more value to my readers who would be able to find
> lessons and solvers outside of algebra.com.
> The drawback, obviously, is that I would be sending my readers away
> from my site. Another drawback is a little more complicated -- now I
> have a lot of tutors writing their lessons on algebra.com to gain
> visibility (they mostly have altruistic motives), but if they can
> publish elsewhere and have a link placed to them, they would not be as
> interested in publishing on algebra.com.
> My hunch is that this is a very good thing to do, but I want to hear
> some feedback.
Changing the theme of your site is not the issue at hand, but I guess you
want to change its service. I can truthfully tells you that I began to
neglect several sites to which I was loyal for years. Digg is probably my
new favourite, which obviates the need to visit other sites. Maybe link
assemblage is the way forward.
Best wishes and good luck,