5 Things I’ve Learned From Engaging With One Community For 10 Years

Can a community exist online while avoiding the toxicity of the outside world?

A Rainbow Nerdfighter Banner made by Reddit user u/quinntasia. Source
The 2020 Vidcon Banner — Source
The 2021 P4A Logo — Source
Photo by Solen Feyissa on Unsplash
Photo by Kylie Lugo on Unsplash

5 Things I’ve Learned From Engaging With Nerdfighteria For 10 Years

  1. The Community is Only as Strong as It’s Leaders. The reason John and Hank have been able to keep this community going for so long, with minimal toxicity within it, is because they listen, respond, and are respectful with every word thrown their way. They are also seen as respected leaders due to the number of charitable causes they support every year.
  2. Have a Number of Different Ways For The Community to Interact Together. The Nerdfighter Discord server has so many channels. There are channels on writing, creative endeavors, video games, music, engineering, snacks, etc. There’s even a channel for those looking for advice. Every time someone asks a question, serious or silly, it’s responded to with respect by genuinely good people. The vast amount of channels Nerdfighters are active in also allows new users to the community to feel welcomed and related to.
  3. Fight For Good Together. Every year, the Project For Awesome gets me incredibly excited because I get to talk within the community about different ways to get involved. 2020 was an awful year for me financially, so I couldn’t donate, but what I could do was promote the P4A on every social media platform in as many creative ways as possible. This shows enthusiasm and positivity about the community, which gets people outside Nerdfighteria excited about it. On the Discord server, lots of people shared various ways they were promoting it, big and small, which encouraged others to go above and beyond to promote it on their end as well.
  4. Be Friendly Towards Everyone. The old approach, “if you can’t say anything nice to someone, don’t say anything at all,” is actually a fantastic approach. It’s an unwritten rule, for the most part, and everyone follows it because if you don’t, everyone doesn’t like you, and you’re kicked from the Discord server with no words of animosity whatsoever. I believe people are mean to one another on social media to cause arguments because they get off on others joining in on their side. They want a sense of community as well, but they solely want to be mean and talk down to other people. When they don’t see anyone taking their side, they leave.
  5. Be Consistent. This goes for whatever community you run, no matter if it’s a YouTube channel, Instagram, Discord Server, or something else. You need to continue to upload weekly, biweekly, monthly, etc. This keeps your community excited and updated on what’s going on and why they should continue to be a part of your community. If John and Hank stopped uploading 5 years ago, I guarantee the amount of users on the Nerdfighter Discord server would have plummeted by now, even if there would be a few others left just for fun. Staying consistent with yearly projects like the P4A, or even just something for fun everyone can work on, keeps a community excited to stick together one more year.
Photo by Clark Tibbs on Unsplash



I’m a Writer, Photographer, and lover of food and bad puns.

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