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The critical mass of members

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Joined: May 02
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Posted: 2005-02-24 14:28:00   

Hello everybody,

I am curious what you senior members do think about the critical mass of members GLOBOsapiens does need. You might have noticed that the amount of new members signing up each day tanked from about 50 in November to as low as 3 this week. This is mostly caused by google which has altered its search algorithm sending us 300 people each day instead of about 3000. We working on getting back to the good old numbers, but this insident leaves one important question: How many members does a community like GLOBO need to become autonomous? Most of the members I do see loged in each day are loyal GLOBO citizens which seem to like the site and return over and over again. What about the others? I was hoping that one time we will reach a certain critical mass of members which will result in loads of members online because they want to be toghether and share the spirit of travel. Just like the telphone. You've got one phone its not interesting, 2,3 or 5... much better. But how much phones (members) do we need till it becomes that much interesting that we do not need to worry about dominant ever ruling search engines?

I am wondering if the concept of GLOBO is what people want, or if it is just a cooincidence that some of the members spend hours on GLOBO each day.

I noticed the other day that GLOBO is great for people who love publishing or reading storries from others. But how about informing ourselfs about certain destinations? What if I want to know all about Vancouver? GLOBO does not unveil it information on that topic unless you are familar with the system and you go content by content. Yuu check reports, tips, pictures etc. I am starting to think that we need some kind of cataloge where we can dig in by chapters where all the content is agregated. Going.. Canada, BC, Vancouver, Reports etc. Just some thoughts.

Whats your opinion? Jump into the discussion and let me learn what you think. That would be much apreciated.

Best regards,


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Posted: 2005-02-24 18:34:00   

Hi Andy

First of all can I confirm that I like Glogo a lot, scecond saying that one thing that appeals is its difference from other sites. Variety is the spice of life after all.

However i still visit other travel sites and moderate on two. Most seem to have the same problem, a lot of members who never seem to say anything - so that moderators are left wondering what they are getting wrong and how to get members generally involved.

On one site I started a file, I thought by request, that should have been self-managing. I returned for a look a month later and found that nobody had contributed at all!

When I tried to open a mass of references on where to find timetables, very few contributed and I found no evidence that it was being used.

The odd thing is that there are a lot of people out there who will come in if they are really interested - but the things that seem to get the best responses seem bizarre to me. The greatest response i have ever provoked on any site was by using an English [UK] term to describe a garment that was not recognised in the US English language. Masses of people waded in and it went on until the site owner called time - none too soon in my opinion.

I raelise that htis is not very helpful and I'll certainly give it more thought but I did want to stress that you can't find easily what will attract the mass of memebrs to participate.

That's enough now and it's tea time. I'll come back on your specific suggestions later.

Cheers, David

Grieve not for that which you cannot do but rejoice in that which you can.

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Posted: 2005-02-25 22:39:00   


It is indeed a very difficult question to answer.

I know many people who browse the globo site for information, yet are not members nor do they wish to personally contribute. Yet we have enrolled members who never contribute nor browse either.

As per how many members you need to have a complete globo family, that is difficult to tell.

But I can say that Globo is a great website, and members in general are great and reliable contributors. There are many places in the world, small and large areas of places that hasn't been written or photographed yet, by our members. I have faith that one day you'll have it all on this one site. How many members we need to have it all is hard to tell..

Hope it helps


Festina Lente (Hurry Slowly)

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Posted: 2005-02-26 07:34:00   


Globo is a Great travel site on line for getting travelers first hand information about the places they visit around the world .And also all this well supported by our images ,forums ,albums and chat rooms .I know there is well ,many one stand visitors ,who never contribute and even don’t have their personal images on-line .What they do :only asking travel questions they need for their personal purpose ,then even without saying simple “thank you” to our members who would answer for their particular question ,never come back again, until they need some more info. And to tell you frankly ,this is kind sad at least in my one opinion .Sad for this people ,that they don’t really want to become fully participating in our community.

Our community is growing and I say rapidly ,sometimes with more then 50 members signing up a day and some times dropping to only very few .But this is okay in my eyes, is like in any other businesses-some ups and there is some downs.We are relatively a very young community,but the site has done tremendously lot for all this few years .In my opinion ,only persistence, determination and more time will add more devoted members ,I have more then confidence in it.

As to how many more members do we need-as many members possible and

eventually we will.


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Posted: 2005-02-26 11:43:00   

I've thought more about this now and read the other responses and I'm not sure that the total number of members is what matters in determining the viability of a site. It's quite legitimate to join for other reasons than wanting to contribute after all. It is always, on any site, going to be a number of active members who keep it going and I get the impression that Globo is pretty well up in that direction.

However, I do think there is a bit more that could be done to stimulate new members who don't have much confidence. I can still remember how nervous I felt early on about contributing to boards - not Globo because I already had experience elsewhere.

Perhaps I can illustrate by means of a hypothetical example. I've managed to get in a reference to the wonderful pantheon at León in Spain by putting it in one section of an area report - but suppose I was a diffident newcomer. Something like that would probably not appeal at all. So how could I draw it to people's attention? You oaf, you are all thinking, just put a travel tip.

How right you are - but just think a moment more. I click 'travel tips' and what comes up? The first nine are all for places to stay or eat - nothing wrong with that but it could give the wrong impressiom. Furthermore they all have pictures beside them. No way I'll have a non-commercial picture of this. So I give up. [Actually I did have a quick look when I started - and gave up! It was only in thinking about this correspondence that I looked again and thought how appropriate it would be.]

So, perhaps an important omission is a sort of guide for new members, automatically received on registration, explaining what they can do on the site. I don't mind doing some work on this if it seems a good idea - perhaps a few of us could?

Cheers, David

Grieve not for that which you cannot do but rejoice in that which you can.

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Posted: 2005-03-03 01:09:00   

GLOBO is certainly an ever growing snowball, we are still in that phase when one has to push the sides of the ball together and roll it carefully until it holds itself together. There is a stage soon when the weight of the rolling snowball starts doing the compression itself and only needs little guidance and a bit of downhill gradient. Is that sort of what is meant? :-)

Self sufficiency and automatic growth by only internal connections? I imagine its possible but it would take much longer (guess 15-30 years) to build up the required, I guess about 100000 members, like a small city. This could be reached in 5-10 years with external search engines, directories, promotions and sponsors. With so much amazing initial material now in the databanks (that must have been the hardest), with impressive records and wonderful members the "snowball" will grow even faster now. Regardless of when and how the critical mass is achieved, at 100000 members about 1000 (1%) of them would be hyperactive or premium, check in daily or weekly and send e-cards or references regularly, even create a link from there own homepages with a then well known GLOBO-LOGO, install the GLOBO-homepage as the browser start/default page or install it or parts as screensavers and wallpaper, buy the t-shirts, caps and stickers (eventually) and physically meet other members, perhaps occassional city/regional meetings and joint outings/explorations . Atleast about 5000 (5% of) members will contribute material regularly, even eventually video/MMS material and chat or check in at least every fortnight or monthly, 50000 (50%) are quarterly/yearly viewers/visitors but also very important for expansion by interest and casual word-of-mouth. About 40% I guess are one-time visitors, 3% might cancel there memberships, oh, that makes a total of only 99%, mmm, yes, 1% might get themselves deleted or banned. All this just theory, I suppose statistics over the last 3 years could tell more. I think numbers here must be an exponential curve, not linear.

The expansion rate of membership will surely vary from time to time together with current travel moods, needs, economy and promotional/advertising effort, even weather, but never decrease if managed well. There is no critical mass or upper limits of potential and achievements.

External links: "Search by word" Google is the best but not only search engine, there are hundreds worldwide. Additionally GLOBO is still to be registered in a lot (thousands) of "search-by-topic" directories worldwide, some specific to each country or city example (Munich) or (South Africa) or special user groups like for "Jungwuchs" kids (GLOBO is always clean for them) and many more. Also, GLOBOs best asset (after membership) is its picture databank. If pictures at GLOBO had the correct file name, title and description, they would be easily be found by picture search engines like at google or altavista. Another option would be to create our own search engine, or certainly, a full search within GLOBO.


[ This Message was edited by: rangutan on 2005-03-03 12:24 ]

Rudolf "Rangutan" Graspointner

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