Tips

(Composed for Kusaba X By Tahko Tetsujin)

Introduction

As many people will find when looking at any list of chans, there isn't that much originality in with many chans, most of them are clumsy 4chan clones that have zero original boards. These people believe that it is a winning formula and can be replicated. This is very rarely the case. Please review the following suggestions and tips when you are developing your chan.

Why making a 4chan clone is ineffective

Well the simplest explanation is that there already is a 4chan. Everything you know and love about 4chan honestly are the things you really can't replicate by just making a clone. Unless 4chan goes down, you have no hope to curry a community based solely on replicating a working model.

“Why not?” you may say, “There was Yahoo before there was Google. There was IE before Firefox” This is true they are similar but they are successful because they DID NOT replicate, they made it better or more fitting for the target audience they had in mind. This is now why Yahoo is trying to catch up to Google and IE to Firefox.

How do I make an original chan?

Funnily enough, it's easier than you think. In the land of no thought, the man with an idea is king. What you do is before you even make your chan, you need to sit down either by yourself or with a group of like minded individuals and create a chan based on the things you like most that isn't heavily covered or create an overall philosophy on how you believe a chan should behave and be set up but without outright copying someone else's boards. This shows not only effort but uniqueness needed to make your chan stand out amongst others.

Mind you that look is just as important as board structure. Also, making extras for your chan like games or a web based IRC client doesn't hurt either, it allows you to give your community more awesome things to do to come back to your chan as well as serve as a promotional vehicle in social bookmarking and the like.

Great Chan Extras:

What about Staffing?

Look, I'm going to put it as kindly as I can. Unless they have taken the ride with you in developing your chan, DO NOT make mods and admins out of your friends. The reason why is that though they will say it is cool and that they want to be on, don't expect them to actually mod anything if you do it. Some people just want the status of being a mod and that hinders your process in the long run when they believe they have clout although they do nothing.

Getting good staff is like interviewing people for a job, because in a way, that's what it is. You need people that are going to keep things the way you want them to be kept. In order to do that, you need to know from the start they are on the same page as you, otherwise, your chan will suffer.

What about Community?

There is a common misconception that ALL chan users want the same thing. This not only is not true but is logically false and should never be assumed. Providing something unique allows others that enjoy chans to express themselves perhaps in a manner that they could not previously.

What makes a good chan admin?

Tools, the ability to learn, and a thick skin. Kusaba is a really simple script but by no means is that an excuse to not learn how to change things like look and functionality nor is it a reason not to try to make something new and interesting from it. The idea is to learn. The more you know about the script, the more you can manipulate. You don't have to know how to code PHP from scratch, you just have to know enough to manipulate it. Here are some of the tools I use to get things done:

Now that you understand that, you are ready for the yang of this statement. You have to be social. You need to be active in your own chan. In your IRC, posting as an admin, responding to people and their requests and determining if what the people are wanting, is really right for your chan. You have to be able to take ridicule with a grain of salt. You have to be part of the community that you wish to create. The more active you are, the more likely the direction of your board will go the way that you wish.

If you got Kusaba X because you thought that if you just throw it up, people will come, then forget it. Don't even bother. It's up to you to get them there. No one just started a website of any sort and had it become successful after having no further involvement.

How do I build my community?

Well of course promotion. Remember, promote correctly or you will get backlash from it. DO NOT USE OTHER CHANS AS A VEHICLE TO PROMOTE YOUR CHAN. The people who frequent chans as you well know may not be keen to seeing you link your chan on theirs and fallout may occur. (Trust me on that one)

Now there are several ways of getting your name out there. Consider the links below. Again if you make extras that create content you can add to social bookmarking sites, this is good way to introduce people to a chan they have never heard of or perhaps you are thier first experience with chans!

Also, your greatest promotional vehicle is your community. If they love what you are doing, they will tell people about it. Community is always the key element.

Getting your site known

The following sites are designed to promote chans and are a really great way of gaining exposure

Random Tips

  • StumbleUpon and Reddit are more open to chan content than any other social networks
  • Get to know other chan admins, some of them are more friendly than you may think
  • If you do decide you want to sell adspace, don't try to get it until you've collected alot of posts. No one will take you if you have no content.
  • Remember that you can't win over all of the people all of the time. Some people are going to hate your chan no matter what. It's inevitable. Never allow people to radically change your chan by threatening to leave if you don't. Well, unless everyone is doing it. Then things may need to change!

WIP

This article can easily be added to. If you have something you'd like to add, or think I forgot something, post in /c/.

 
tips.txt · Last modified: 2010/06/24 23:42 by harrison
 
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