Communities - what should you ask your prospective members?
Trying to extract what might be a valid discussion from a thread that is.. erm.. very specific. I guess I have a question for the members.
When we started our online community we had some discussion about what we wanted to know about our members before they joined. I know that some communities have a list of questions that need to be filled out, some make it a freeform essay-type question others, like this forum, require only a very basic signup (to prove you're not a bot) and you are in.
We chose the freeform essay. You can post to one board and, once done, unless you are trying to sell Viagra or something, you are basically in and given full access. We allow people to pick whatever handle they want, don't ask for location (beyond a connection or some sort with the state, which is our community focus) and that they are poly (whatever that means to them).
Some people are very closeted about their poly, some are totally out - most are somewhere in between - presumably we want to respect both ends of that spectrum and everything in between.
When you sign up for a poly community, what do you think is the balance between getting enough information to keep out spammers, but not forcing people to write a life-story or do a 200 question multiple choice test to get in? If you were to start a community, what would you need to know, before accepting someone as a member?
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