hello folks! some additional suggestions have been made to round out Beehaw’s current set of communities, so we’ve gone ahead and done that. we have four new communities accordingly, which are:

Disability and Accessibility! i think this one is pretty self-explanatory, but for anyone ambiguous on its intent, @xuxxun@beehaw.org puts it like this:

Feel free to post anything health, chronic illness, disability or accessibility related. If you need a space for support or sharing your experiences regarding all of the above topics, this is the right place as well :)

People of Color! this is a community specifically devoted to ethnic minority groups and their issues, and for discussions and connections relating to those minority groups. we’re also hopeful it’ll be a good space for minorities who are migrating to Lemmy, since i’m not aware of very many communities on here to this point like that. there’s an already existing introduction thread in the community by @kalanggam@beehaw.org if you’d like to drop by.

Betterment and Praxis! i’ll let @Wigglet@beehaw.org speak for the idea behind this one, because i think it really gets at some of the stuff we’re trying to help build here:

Even if it’s just growing a little bit extra in the garden for the local food bank, picking up rubbish on the side of the road, or just making an effort to use the bus, having a supportive community encouraging you makes those little choices a bit easier. Maybe you’ve always wanted to do a little bit more for your community but don’t know where to start. Maybe you already do some of these things and want to help others get started. Maybe you’re just really proud of how something is done in your community. We might not be able to solve all the problems but we can at least try to make a few small things a little bit nicer.

and, finally: Socialism! there’s no shortage of communities like this on Lemmy but a commonality many people have experienced is they’re… not very welcoming, in general. luckily, a left-wing subreddit got in touch with us about moving (pre-boom, even) and we think their community on Reddit fit the ethos of the site pretty well, so we’ve helped move them over here. as the sidebar states, this community is:

A place for all leftist and labor news and discussion, as long as you’re nice about it. […] Non-socialists are welcome to come to learn, though it’s hard to get to in-depth discussions if the community is constantly fighting over the basics. We ask that non-socialists please be respectful and try not to turn this into a “left vs right” debate forum by asking leading questions or by trying to draw others into a fight.

we hope you’ll find each of these four new communities a useful space to discuss in.


now, as for the subject of new community creations: we’re definitely slowing down on batches of communities after this set. this isn’t a total stop–as our existing communities grow, we’ll split off new ones as needed–but we’re going to try and keep additions to a minimum until the Reddit wave crests. tentatively, our next batch of community creations will probably be after July 1, and any we create before then will be on an individual as-needed basis.

we think the current set of communities covers most things adequately enough for our purposes right now. some imperfections exist but to reiterate: we aren’t trying to be Reddit, so some overlap and imperfection in coverage is fine with us.

this also doesn’t mean we’re done taking public opinion checks. we’re not sure when this will be sent out yet (it’s being worked on today), but we’re drafting a community survey where among other things we’ll gauge interest in the suggestions i’ve seen that haven’t already been added. be on the lookout for that.

thanks folks!

@Shokwav@beehaw.org
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It would be neat to see some of the more… esoteric? type communities on here- think r/LiminalSpaces, GlitchInTheMatrix, MandelaEffect, etc. not a big deal but those were some of my favorite time wasting subs lol

Man, you should call these community announcements beehaw yeehaws. I think that’s be neat and funny.

@Tordoc@beehaw.org
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Seconded!

crank
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honestly I never had much use for the general communities like “technology”, “news”, “sex”, etc. I came to reddit and stuck around for the niche stuff. Even niches that I am not involved in, it is fun to see what people care about and get a different perspective. And sometimes it’s a life saver to be able to access specialized communities. Holla at /r/pestcontrol, /r/bedbugs, /r/whatisthisbug and the related subs.

I can understand from an admin perspective of a specific instance why you’d want to keep a lid on things during a time of crazy growth. In terms of lemmy as a platform, having small communities that can develop shared norms and knowledge is what will make it worthwhile and avoid the general feeling of being “over run” with low quality content. the big tent groups will always be lowest common denominator. Also the general topics do not want to get full of a specific kind of common but boring post. Like /r/apple (IIRC) didn’t allow tech support type question; there is a separate space for that.

In your position I would consider making a “new group request” section where people can post their ideas and others can express interest. You could request for people to do a bit of work such as writing up community guidelines to show some effort. When a group is rejected by this instance and they form somewhere else; in most cases you could allow them to link to that (unless it is you know terrible) so it can be found by others in the future. I understand that would entail a whole lot of work and headaches to run and people will be mad about it but over time it could shake out to allow actually communties.

alyaza [they/she]
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In terms of lemmy as a platform, having small communities that can develop shared norms and knowledge is what will make it worthwhile and avoid the general feeling of being “over run” with low quality content. the big tent groups will always be lowest common denominator. Also the general topics do not want to get full of a specific kind of common but boring post. Like /r/apple (IIRC) didn’t allow tech support type question; there is a separate space for that.

on these points: Lemmy has no shortage of small communities–and those have overwhelmingly gone poorly and/or not really developed in that way (nor have the “big tent” groups, which you must remember are hundreds of orders of magnitude smaller than Reddit’s) in the past year and a half on the platform. it’s possible the new influx of users will breathe life into some of these, but most of them are completely dead and will always be, and basically just clutter the experience. i’m also not really sure what we can do objectively about the “common but boring” post you describe, since that’s going to always be a subjective measure, but we do already prune comments people report as low-quality so it’s not ridiculous to me that we’d also try and apply some baseline level of quality to posts.

In your position I would consider making a “new group request” section where people can post their ideas and others can express interest. You could request for people to do a bit of work such as writing up community guidelines to show some effort. When a group is rejected by this instance and they form somewhere else; in most cases you could allow them to link to that (unless it is you know terrible) so it can be found by others in the future. I understand that would entail a whole lot of work and headaches to run and people will be mad about it but over time it could shake out to allow actually communties.

this is not to shut down this idea, but in my honest experience: i don’t think most of the people requesting communities will put this much effort in, which would just be a headache for us (because we’d probably just have to ignore it) and for the suggester (because i mean… where else are they asked to justify, on that level, a proposal for an internet community?). the vast majority of suggestions we’ve gotten to this point have been one-line or very brief suggestions, not a pitch package, and i expect that to not change.

in any case i don’t think this will happen in the immediate term if we do it. that would be another space we have to really keep an eye on, and we’re already covering a lot with not very many people.

@LedgeDrop@beehaw.org
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Regarding your comment about “small communities” not really developing: Couldn’t we just have a simple technical solution? Communities that aren’t “active” just get pruned, culled or just removed from the search.

This would allow the opportunity for some of those “small communities” to thrive (while others die out).

I’m like the parent poster. I came from Reddit and joined /r/GameDeals and /r/PatientGamers but I specifically did not joins /r/Games. Why? Because for me there was too much noise and content I wasn’t interest in /r/Games, but GameDeals + PatientGamers combined offered me more quality with less noise.

I’m kind of frustrated with Lemmy that I need to filter through all the Gaming communities (and noise) just to sort-of keep tabs on what’s happening in the community.

TheRtRevKaiser
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I know federation isn’t the answer to every UX bump that folks are going to encounter when joining a community like Beehaw from a much larger place like Reddit, but in this case I think it actually is an answer at least.

There’s a fairly active Patient Gamers community over at lemmy.ml, and you can subscribe to that via Beehaw by going to https://beehaw.org/c/!patientgamers@lemmy.ml and just clicking subscribe. Then it’ll show up in your subscribed feed just like communities that are hosted on the Beehaw instance.

There’s not a Game Deals community that is as active, but there is a fairly new looking one on another instance we federate with, here: https://beehaw.org/c/gamedeals@compuverse.uk - The prices are all listed in pounds though, so YMMV.

I guess the point I’m trying to get across is that you can kind of have your cake and eat it too with federation. Beehaw can keep communities fairly general and manage them carefully so that they fit our ethos and we can moderate them to the level we want without burning our mods out, and our users can join communities on federated instances if there are more specific topics that they want to be active in.

@LedgeDrop@beehaw.org
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Thank you for pointing those communities out, I just subscribed :)

alyaza [they/she]
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Regarding your comment about “small communities” not really developing: Couldn’t we just have a simple technical solution? Communities that aren’t “active” just get pruned, culled or just removed from the search.

not really at this point. the brute-force way of doing that would involve manually tracking this and nuking all content from the community which is not desirable. a more technical solution may be possible but there’s no functionality which lets this occur in Lemmy, so someone would have to offer to code that on their own time (and have it be accepted by the devs). it’s also not clear to me if the second solution, if possible, still jives with what we want–there’s no granularity in being able to create communities, only a flat toggle of “everyone can” or “admins can”, and there is no circumstance i can currently conceive of where we’d open the floodgates.

@LedgeDrop@beehaw.org
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Thanks for sharing your perspective. Your absolutely right “opening the floodgates” would be an administrative nightmare, plus it might put you (as the admin) at some sort of legal risk.

However, maybe there’s a middle-ground. Let’s assume, for arguments sake, option 2 existed (some simple rules - you defined - which would cleaninly archive, purge, cull inactive channels).

Then foster/encourage people to submit small/nitch channels. Of course, it would need some sort of approval process. It could start out as a simple “blocked word list” and there after would need a manual approval. This manual process could be done by people who you believe are like-minded and “understand” what Beehaw’s purpose is.

Of course, this vetted group will not always choose exactly as you would. However, community members would/could report content, which would draw attention from either you or the vetted group, which could result in the channel being revoked and purged.

If there’s one thing I’ve witnessed at Reddit, it’s the power of passionate people / Mods. They’re not afraid to “roll up their sleeves” and get dirty, if they’re given the chance.

alyaza [they/she]
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my point is mostly that there literally isn’t the functionality to most of do this in Lemmy. even if we wanted to, we could not (and likely will not be able to) do anything near what you’re proposing here, except maybe we could kind of do parts of it manually but that’d take time investiture we simply do not have and may never. community creation is hard coded right now as an all or nothing switch, with no binary or gray area. either we make the communities or you do, and we can’t make an approval process that ultimately differs in how it manifests from what we’re already doing. we also don’t want this to be a job, and that’s something that will also inform how we go about things.

@LedgeDrop@beehaw.org
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Understood. Since I’m coming from a development background, I guess what I’m trying to gauge is “What are the technical limitations vs cultural”… since, technical limitations are usually easier to change than cultural :)

@reka@beehaw.org
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Precisely this. Leaving Reddit I am now seeking a home for discussing specific software libraries, sub-genres of music and cultivating specific types of plants. Am I to understand that Lemmy/Beehaw doesn’t offer this easily without setting up your own server? If so I see this as a massive showstopper for ongoing advancement of popularity. There’s people passionate about a subject who will give hours and hours of their weeks to investing in a discussion or moderating etc. but who are not technically confident enough to run a server.

I’m not asking this to bitch, what is here right now is amazing and great and highly virtuous choices of new communities but I am questioning if Lemmy is the answer to what are my own current interests from a new community platform.

@zark@beehaw.org
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Beehaw specifically is more restrictive than most Lemmy instances. I think after a while some instances will stay fairly general with few, chosen communities, while others hopefully go deep down into specific niches with all sorts of specific communities. Or I don’t know if “hopefully” is correct, I don’t know what’s healthiest for the Fediverse yet. I just hope that after a while we will get strong and healthy niche communities on a lot of weird stuff.

interolivary
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Users can create communities on most other Lemmy instances (the Beehaw FAQ outlines why this is disabled on this instance.) You can eg create another user on some other instance to be able to create the communities you’d like to see

I think the other hand is that beehaw itself is more like a general “home” server. There will be instances with more niche interests that you can subscribe and interact with. And beehaw seems to be more about building a community in the broader sense. But idk, I’m not the big yeehaw of beehaw.

crank
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I guess anyone who is interested in ever starting a community should not get established here.

Eh, I wouldn’t go that far, personally. There’s a lot more to building a community than just the name of it, yknow? I’m going to start work on building a hand spinning and fibre art community, and I don’t need to really post outside of DIY/Creative to do so.

It’s more like building the people before the home. I don’t mind it personally. It’s comfy here.

alyaza [they/she]
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I think the other hand is that beehaw itself is more like a general “home” server. There will be instances with more niche interests that you can subscribe and interact with. And beehaw seems to be more about building a community in the broader sense.

yeah basically.

That makes a lot of sense!

Yeah. Beehaw/Lemmy as a whole isn’t going to be as centralised as Reddit. As possibly for VERY good reason. Niche communities won’t stop existing ever though.

@strangerloop@beehaw.org
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Thank you for your hard work!

Art [he/him] 🌈
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All great additions!

Thanks, in particular, for the disability community. And more broadly, for ensuring that Beehaw is balanced by not adding too many communities.

I think the only major missing community I can think of is “Fitness and Health” for discussions of working out and dieting. I know “Food and Cooking” and “Sports” exist but those don’t quite fit the same vibe.

alyaza [they/she]
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something like that should be on the community survey fyi

Thank you, seconded! I can moderate such a community if needed, being a fitness nerd/gym rat myself, ha.

Wigglet
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Yay I’m so excited!

alyaza [they/she]
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don’t forget to comment there so i can make you a mod!!

Wigglet
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I’ve commented on two posts 📫 haven’t made one yet as I want to think it out and have linked resources and stuff. I’m so so excited! Someone’s local garden does bee fest!?! Incredible and now my village needs a bee fest

@108beads@beehaw.org
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Thank you for your thoughtful and responsive work. I greatly appreciate that you’re keeping up with the tsunami of info, requests, and interesting stuff now that the floodgates are opening. Your (collectively speaking to all the Beehawer admins making hard choices, probably including foregoing sleep) energy and dedication make me think I’m gonna like it here, and inspire me to bring my best as well.

@Manticore@beehaw.org
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Awesome to see, thanks for this! I like that beehaw uses community umbrellas to group people of similar interests (if not necessarily similar opinion) together. It looks like a great way for users to find content relevant to them while still preventing micro-communities and echo chambers.

sintamo
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“Betterment and Praxis” is such an interesting concept for a community, I hope it catches on! Reminds me that if I don’t have something worth posting there, I have room to improve. Excellent additions all around, thanks for keeping up the good work :)

alyaza [they/she]
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yeah, we had some difficulty coming up with a good name for that one which encompassed what we and Wigglet meant by it, but i think the current name captures it pretty well and so far all of the posts there have been very much in the spirit of what we want posted there

sintamo
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Well it made me google “praxis” so you’ve already bettered one person :)

Pixel
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I’d like to ask, what kinds of communities are you trying to make space for here on beehaw? I know this whole instance isn’t trying to be a reddit replacement, but it seems like there’s some amount of hobby space over here? Where are the lines for what kinds of hobby spaces have a home on beehaw? i.e. will there be an anime/manga instance at some point? Where do you draw the line on specificity as well? There’s a gaming community, but what about ones for specific games? I figure that’s out of scope for beehaw, but I’m just trying to get an idea for what the future of the community is as far as hobbyist spaces are here, given that’s largely what I used reddit for

alyaza [they/she]
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Where are the lines for what kinds of hobby spaces have a home on beehaw? i.e. will there be an anime/manga instance at some point?

that’s one of the ones which should be on the community survey we send out

Where do you draw the line on specificity as well? There’s a gaming community, but what about ones for specific games? I figure that’s out of scope for beehaw, but I’m just trying to get an idea for what the future of the community is as far as hobbyist spaces are here, given that’s largely what I used reddit for

i don’t think we’ll ever get to the point on here where we’re so granular we make individual game communities (and i think the rest of Lemmy may cover for that anyways), but:

  • we’ll probably add more granular divisions of gaming over time, so for example splitting tabletop and boardgame discussions off into their own community, or maybe a particularly popular genre of game off into its own community
  • i can definitely see the possibility of more physical hobbies like woodworking, knitting, sewing, birdwatching, etc. getting their own communities way down the line. we already have a really active gardening community, which wasn’t a community i personally expected to take off.
  • we’re already relatively granular with technological stuff too due to the demographics of the community so there might be tech hobbyist communities i’m not immediately thinking of which are well suited to being added eventually
Pixel
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Gotcha, that makes sense. Honestly, the one missing space for me is a place to talk about anime/manga, like I previously specifically mentioned. Especially one that exists in such a well moderated space, lots of times those really easily veer into degeneracy/bigotry in a way that’s really unhealthy, and I think having a productive place to engage with those hobbies would be wonderful. Obviously you’re slowing down so please don’t take this as me demanding it be added now, but I do think that beehaw would be uniquely positioned to have a specifically good anime community, which I would genuinely appreciate.

Gaywallet (they/it)
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lots of times those really easily veer into degeneracy/bigotry in a way that’s really unhealthy

Yep, it’s not the only community where we’re not sure how to proceed quite yet. There’s a lot of interest, but for precisely these reasons, it’s something we want to think about for a bit longer before making any decisions. There are a number of potential communities that fall into a “often times on the internet, these places are problematic” for varying reasons that we want to be cautious about.

Pixel
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Yeah, that’s fair. I don’t think its intrinsic to anime or its fandom, so I think it’s fine to have the community around, but I totally empathize with hesitance to start the community here.

Gaywallet (they/it)
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No, it’s absolutely not, but spaces on the internet which feature these voices are mostly dominated by a certain kind of behavior. It’s hard for people to imagine anything else, so when they spin up new places, they just keep following the same ethos. A few other good examples of spaces that are often problematic for a variety of reasons - communities on men’s rights (often misogynistic or incel dominated/focused), mental health and legal communities (full of advice by people who are not professionals, in a space where you really should get a professionals opinion), any community explicitly asking for negative advice like roast me or am I the asshole, and cosplaying (often dominated by male gaze). There’s a wide variety of spaces on the internet that happen to be negative because of the kinds of people that have traditionally set up these spaces and culture just being carried forward over time. While we’d like to help to break some of these cultures, we also need to be extra careful when maintaining our ethos and not take on too many risky things at once.

DarbyDear
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I just wanted to take a chance, since it was specifically mentioned here, to thank you and the rest of the Beehaw moderation/administration team for being so aware and thoughtful regarding issues like domination of the male gaze, bigotry, and mysoginy in online communities. Just earlier today I responded to a post somewhere mentioning that I wasn’t sure what about Beehaw prompts me to be more vocal rather than sticking to my lurking ways, but I think the attention and care regarding these topics plays an enormous part. I know that the goal here is to build a community of caring, so I guess I just wanted to let the team know that I notice and appreciate it, and it is making this community a significantly more welcoming experience for me. I know it’s difficult to strike a balance between maintaining an inclusive space and being overly strict regarding topics (such as the anime example already mentioned earlier in this thread), but I think you’re all doing a marvelous job so far. Thank you for all that you do!

Gaywallet (they/it)
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That’s really touching to hear, thank you! I’m glad you find it inspiring. I find comments like yours inspiring too! 🥰

Pixel
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Yeah, agree with all of the above. I’ve worked in community management before so I totally understand where you’re coming from, growth that’s sustainable is more important than growth at all costs, and anything that threatens that should be handled carefully. I hope that the interest persists though, because if you do manage to create that space (and i think the fediverse and more specifically beehaw are well equipped to create that space) it could be something very special :)

Gaywallet (they/it)
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It’s a space we’ve been working on for years because we all feel strongly about it. The fact that so many of you have joined us here is proof that it’s something a lot of people want to see. We might not figure out the perfect formula, but so long as we get a nice place for a little while on the internet and spread some joy and positivity I think that’s more than worth it. Thanks for joining us on the journey and pitching in by contributing your thoughts 💜✨

luckily, a left-wing subreddit got in touch with us about moving (pre-boom, even) and we think their community on Reddit fit the ethos of the site pretty well, so we’ve helped move them over here

Which one?

alyaza [they/she]
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/r/LeftWithoutEdge, which took the principled stance about 5 years ago that maybe Reddit left communities didn’t need to be all about killing everyone constantly. they’re also not particularly large in terms of active users, so they nicely slot into “large enough to build a community on here around, but small enough they won’t really influence the trajectory of the overall community”

Art [he/him] 🌈
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Wow, I never saw that sub before.

I like the way leftism is being approached here on Beehaw.

Nice to hear! I really enjoyed that subreddit. I felt like it was one of the few leftist places you could enjoy respectful discussions

DarbyDear
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I think that’s one of the few leftist spaces on Reddit where I actually didn’t feel like I was seen as scum just because I’m an Army veteran. A very (unfortunately) common sentiment in leftist spaces is that anybody that played any part in the military-industrial complex is beyond consideration and worthy of nothing but scorn, regardless of the fact that being in the military did more to push me left than anything else I can think of.

🦊 OneRedFox 🦊
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Yeah, we don’t see much point in shitting on those who’ve already realized how awful that whole system is. Glad you’ve come to realize it too.

DarbyDear
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I really appreciate it. There’s only so many times I could see people join to try to improve their lot in life only to get ground up and spit out, then betrayed by the people who made endless promises to them, before it made a permanent change in my worldview. Thankfully I realized that embracing the system that created these conditions is a fool’s errand, but I do actually understand the hesitation to accept veterans when there are so many others that view the establishment as something other than a human rights violations factory that dangles the promise of a better life to take advantage of the downtrodden. There’s plenty more I can say about this topic, but I’ll cut it short here since this should be a place for celebrating the further development of our community, not to air political grievances.

araquen
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I belong to r/leftwithoutedge and it is a good group. I’m glad they found a home here.

🦊 OneRedFox 🦊
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We’re glad that some of our users have opted to move over as well.

Album
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Thanks for this context, it matters a lot.

@V4uban@beehaw.org
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Great news!

glitchead
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Thank you for the measured approach; something to be said about moderation and patience when growing something.

Weston Hawk
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Thank you busy bees for your hard work and kind consideration during the Reddit wave! I wonder how much bigger it will get?

Beehaw Support
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Support and meta community for Beehaw. Ask your questions about the community, technical issues, and other such things here.

A brief FAQ for lurkers and new users can be found here.

Our February 2024 financial update is here.

For a refresher on our philosophy, see also What is Beehaw?, The spirit of the rules, and Beehaw is a Community


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