Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Organized Chaos

The d20pfsrd.com site is an interesting experiment in community-based cooperative projects.  When I started it many months ago I didn't really know what or how it would proceed, only that I wanted a better Pathfinder rules resource and figured I could do it myself. Many months later the site has come a very long way. There are now over 30 (approaching 40) collaborators.

However, there are some unfortunately observations...

Nobody wants to do the boring crap. There's a lot of tedious, manual, grunt work that needs to be done. In the last month, out of 30-40 collaborators, only about 6 have logged on and done anything. Those 6 have done a combination of things but mostly importing new things (new spells from Pathfinder setting materials), importing new creatures (converting previously released creatures). A few people have actually fixed problems with the site (which is extremely cool and appreciated) but the majority of people prefer to add new cool things instead of fix existing broken things.

Does anyone have experience running collaborative projects like this? I set up a messageboard to wrangle all collaborator conversation into one area but I get very few responses from other contributors. I'm dreaming of a core group of 5-10 people who actively tackle very specific tasks instead of going off on their own and doing random (though cool) things.


1 comment:

  1. I wish I had experience to offer any real advice. I think a lot of it has to do with the "Great Recession" we are in. People just can't afford to spend too much of their free time fixing a website unless it is in their best interest to do so or if there is a paycheck at the end of the rainbow.

    I saw your post on pen & paper games. You are right though, despite your page not found errors, your site is better than Paizo's. If you had a a way to verify each and every page & error fix then you maybe you could develop a reward system so that when someone hit a milestone, they got a prize of some sort.

    just a thought...