As you might have guessed from the URL, I’m Ben. I’ve been managing online communities for about 15 years now, and currently do so for a living – working with the Community team at Envato, alongside many excellent people. My work ranges from the really specific (“How can we get this feature added to our forums?”) to the really nebulous (“What does a healthy community look like, and how do we help it to evolve?”), which is exactly the sort of mix that fascinates me.
Outside of work, I’m (still!) gradually fighting my way through a doctoral thesis in Sociology, looking at how a group of small business managers used social media tools to build networks and access social capital. If I’ve looked a little haggard in the last 7-8 years, that’s probably a part of it. I’m glad to report that I survived the snake fight portion, and am back to work drafting up thesis chapters.
Previously, I’ve been a freelance editor and publisher, and before that I was a labcoat-wearing scientist. When I wasn’t dabbling in Sociology of Science, I spent most of my undergraduate years studying Chemistry and Geology, and I later spent five years working in metal corrosion research at CSIRO. Eventually, I decided that I wanted to break out of the laboratory and run amok in the fresh air, so here I am.