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April 28, 2020


A moderation strategy is an essential part of building an online community. Moderating a community encourages its members to behave appropriately, make relevant contributions, and engage in lively discussions.

Good moderation is a balance between maintaining order and giving members the freedom to engage in honest discussion. Implement the following five tips for effective community moderation.

1. Assign a Community Manager
A community manager encourages community members to interact and engage in conversation. The manager also builds a bridge between your brand and community members.

The community manager also acts as a sort of mayor or leader of the community. A good manager makes sure the community stays on track. And addresses any inappropriate behavior displayed in the community.

Other responsibilities include, but aren’t limited to, attracting new members, responding to questions and comments concerning the community, and facilitating new topics.

2. Clarify Your Expectations for the Community
The community manager must have a clear idea of what you expect from the community. The tone of the community, its purpose, and acceptable community etiquette should be clear. Establish a Terms of Use and provide moderation guidelines for the community manager.

3. Limit Access to Community Content and Functions
Your community will have areas and content that’s not available to the public. The community manager should have control over what content is public and what content is private. They will also have the ability to grant or deny access to community members. The community manager can also create groups and assign different roles to community members.

4. Practice Quality Control
The purpose of community content is to benefit the members. If you provide a quality experience, then community members will return for more. You can send out email surveys to gauge how members feel about the community. Monitor keywords and questions that receive a lot of attention. And, of course, provide a steady stream of fresh content.

Quality control also includes moderating the types of images and graphics that community members post. When some people think of online moderation, they focus solely on written content. Moderating the written word is essential, but it’s also possible for people to post graphics or images that are inappropriate for your online community.

The community manager can add moderating graphics and images to their list of responsibilities. But you may also want to consider an AI or another type of system that performs image moderation with human accuracy.

5. Reward Community Members for Providing Good Content
Some people have an unfavorable review of community moderation. They believe it stifles freedom of speech and expression. But rewarding members who make positive contributions can put moderation in a better light. Community members will see that although the community is moderated, they’re actually rewarded for their positive contributions.

Types of rewards include badges, reputation points, and different status levels. For instance, a community member might start as a “newbie” and receive various titles, such as “expert” as they post more useful content; this shows that their participation is appreciated, while also providing an incentive to keep posting valuable content.