The Art of Community

Jono Bacon

An early book on online community management based in extreme anecdotalism within the open source Linux world. While it did leave me with a new source of admiration for open source software, the theories in this book are noticeably difficult to extrapolate into other spheres of work. Considering Mr. Bacon wishes for this to be the central tenant of the book's thesis, that limits its overall usefulness.

I suspect some day this will be used as a primary document in some academic anthropology of open-source software movements. For my part, I was looking for something more infrastructure-and-process-based at the time when I first read it, so I didn't gain very much from reading it as far my own research interests were concerned. There was one particular bit that caught my interest regarding the term “communication fetishism,” but when I contacted the author later to ask him for the basis of it, he freely admitted to merely giving it a name and not much beyond that.

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