• Being a PubCon Panelist in Las Vegas 2010: Teaching and Learning About Community

      I had a great deal of fun of speaking about online communities on two separate panels at PubCon last week in Las Vegas. PubCon (WebmasterWorld's Publishers Conference) covers a range of Internet content such as social media, search engine optimization and website developer issues. My two panels were about online communities: Starting an Online Community and Modern Community Admin Issues.

      I was one of three panelists in the Starting an Online Community session. I presented with two other panelists: Sanjay Sabnani, who has literally dozens of discussion forums/communities as the CEO of CrowdGather, and Roger Dooley, founder of College Confidential, an enormous forum encompassing nearly four thousand colleges and universities in the U.S. While I presented the very basic nuts and bolts and technical aspects required to launch an online community, Sanjay and Roger did an amazing job of filling in all of the characteristics that make up a great community.

      In the Modern Community Admin Issues session, I again presented with Roger Dooley as well as an additional panelist, Matt Mickiewicz. Matt is the co-founder of 99designs, Flippa and SitePoint - three very different types of online communities that are all successful in their own ways. Matt has been creating and running online communities for more than ten years and he is an expert in managing diverse populations of members and enhancing their community experiences.

      Roger Dooley
      Matt Mickiewicz
      99designs, SitePoint
      Sanjay Sabnani
      Me (Erika Tabke)

      I was delighted to bring my own experiences from both dotIVF.com and IVFConnections.com to the conference. Our IVFConnections community had the most unique member base of the forums discussed, and I enjoyed sharing some of our community challenges and triumphs with the attendees (and my co-panelists). I received a great deal of positive feedback about IVFConnections as well as some pointers on how to make our community even stronger. I've been excited about the IVFConnections.com community since acquiring the domain assets in August, and I am jazzed to keep making our community better and better each day.

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