This is a very very rough draft of the outline for what the Archetypes look like in a community (mostly thrown up here from TextPad notes). It is important to note that all of these community archetypes play highly positive roles in various communities. Any tension caused by the 'clashing' of personality types is good for balance. Not all Archetypes exist in every community, but quite often pair up to make up certain types of (or fingerprints for) communities. You may either recognize yourself below, or fall under a couple of categories. I've paired each up roughly with the Meyers-Briggs classifications, which I know are very North American centric, but they seemed to map very nicely to many of the personalities I've seen along the way. If you want to take a test to see what you are, go here: Further explanation of the 'types' is here:

Keep in mind that the mappings to the Meyers-Briggs is somewhat imperfect (although as I read more into it, I may find stronger ties), so if you have alternative suggestions, they are welcome as well. :)

Caretakers - ENFJ

Caretakers are the people people. They can sense when someone needs more support and will drop everything to go and give that support. They quite often neglect their own needs for that of others and are at risk for being taken advantage of. These powerfully charismatic types make everyone feel safe around them and are essential to communities that have a more mentoring attitude than meritocratic attitude. Caretakers will swoop in and navigate newbies through the early stages of their community involvement

The thing to watch out for with Caretakers, is that they don't know how to delegate and will often take on too much, burning themselves out. They won't understand exactly why they are feeling the need to distance themselves from the community, but if their needs aren't met (or their burden isn't relieved), they will eventually back away.

Leaders - ENTJ

Leaders can't stand to let things idle for too long. As soon as there is an opening, they will come along and direct a project. Once in that steward position, there is no stopping the leader. If pointed in the right direction, Leaders will be your saviors in getting things done.

Leaders need to be teamed up with Creators and Caretakers in order to be effective. They may sometimes have good ideas, but quite often, they are too effective at leading people astray. Think the Pied Piper.

Creators - ENFP

Super creative and full of ideas, Creators are always thinking up new ways to make things better. They are spontaneous, often zany and fun, and attention getters. They are also very strongly opinionated (but usually right) about direction. They hate structure and bureaucracy and have high ethical standards.

Easily distracted, you'll want to let the Creator know they are listened to...and really actually listen to them because they are pretty innovative in their thoughts.

Gamers - ESTP

Gamers are thrill seekers. They love competition and challenge. Give a Gamer a system in which s/he can win points and keep upping the ante, and you will have her/him for life. Very very strategic, Gamers get the most pleasure out of numbers, winning and status.

If you put Gamers in with too many Spectators, Workers and Caretakers, you run the risk of major conflict. Gamers need to have motivation and love to show off their winnings...they also respect other Gamers' prowess, so it's best to keep the Gamers together. Dreamers work well with Gamers, though.

Gate Keepers - ESTJ

Gate Keepers are the members of the community who believe strongly in a meritocracy and will make certain that every new member pays his/her dues before proceeding ("No free rides here"). Gate Keepers are also very good at reminding others of the rules and guidelines. They make excellent filters for 'bozos' and 'drive-bys'.

Gate Keepers and Caregivers may play Bad Cop Good Cop with Newbies. Once you have won the respect of a Gate Keeper, it is hard to lose it.

Hot Doggers - ENTP

Hot Doggers love taking a look at information and finding ways to glue them together in new, unorthodox ways but what they love even more is being recognized for their wit and cleverness. Think "The Comic Book Guy" on The Simpsons. They often have a great deal of deep knowledge that should be heeded, but because they can tend to be terse in their delivery, many will ignore them.

Hot Doggers are very smart and if pointed in the right direction, can be invaluable for problem-solving and getting things done right. Pair them with the Planners and Leaders, and expect them to irritate the Peace Makers, as they will ruffle feathers along the way.

Networkers - ESFP

Networkers have the gift of gab. A Networker will walk into a party or enter a social network and befriend 90% of the people in no time. A Networker is good at making people laugh and feel good, so they get along with people easily. They are amazing storytellers and quite cultured, so they know a little about many subjects.

Networkers have more surface than deep relationships, so you can't always count on the Networker to stick around and be incredibly loyal. For a networker, the thrill is in the networking, not in cultivating deep relationships. There is always another network to conquer.

Peacemakers - ESFJ

Peacemakers have a strong feeling towards balance and harmony. S/he will strike out at those who threaten it. S/he will also exert all of the power s/he has in order to keep the peace. Peacemakers don't care who is right or wrong, only that harmony is maintained.

Peacemakers are hyper-sensitive to unrest, so it is possible that a tumultuous community will eventually lose all of its Peacemakers to frustration an anger. It is crucial that Peacemakers don't feel that they are holding up the peace for everyone. Much like the Caretaker, they will suffer burnout.

Workers - ISFJ

Workers are characterized by their need to serve others. Being introverts, they get more satisfaction from knowing they did a good job to support others than being recognized for it at all. In fact, in some extreme cases, they will actually react negatively to being rewarded for their hard work. The hard work is reward enough. Workers are reliable and loyal as well as efficient and accurate.

Workers need lots of instruction and loyalty in return. Being told they are appreciated is crucial. They will never tell you what they need, so you have to be highly cognizant of where they are at. To win their trust, show your appreciation appropriately and win their trust completely by being loyal back.

Wanderers - ISFP

Another word for a Wanderer is Experimenter as a Wanderer isn't one who is likely to commit. These are free birds, flitting from one place to another and don't want to be tied down. They want to explore before they commit and even once they commit, it takes a great deal for them to become really engaged.

Wanderers can often be very much like Gamers, and if you catch their attention long enough, they will spend significant time in your community. You have to keep the challenge up and the experience high.

Organizers - ISTJ

Organizers are, well, organized, devoted and responsible. Organizers are much like Workers, but with much more drive. They are very methodical and like to stick to standards and logical ordering. Organizers perform well on wikis, often adopting the nickname 'Wiktator' - restoring order to haphazard ramblings and slapdash pages of information.

If anything seems too erratic and out of control, you will lose your Organizers, which is a loss no one can afford. Defending their sense of order is a good thing as they may come across a bit terse to others who are more casual about their process. It is best to give an Organizer a great deal of responsibility on a site.

Critics - INTP

Critics are the types of community member that will always point out your type-o's and very rarely give you positive feedback. This is not a bad thing, you just have to take it with a grain of salt. Critics are there to help. They wouldn't do it if they didn't care. Critics also don't often understand nuanced jokes and will correct you if you use non-logical grammar (ie. "The Best Game EV-AR").

Critics are also good to put with Gamers and Dreamers as they have a competitive edge to them. They are quietly competitive compared to the other two, but incredibly responsive to positive feedback themselves.

Promoters - ISTP

When Promoters get an idea, there is no stopping them. They usually lie dormant in a community until they have an idea or an event that requires attention, then they take over for the time period necessary to be heard and have action taken.

On the negative side of Promoters, they will mow down the needs of others in order to get their point across. A good example of this is the recent outbreak of people promoting the anti-Flickr censorship in the comments of photos unrelated to the cause. Still, pointing Promoters in the right direction will create all sorts of good buzz for a project.

Spectators - INFJ

Spectators are those, who, after a trust relationship is created, will tell you that they've read everything you've ever written. They are not dormant, passive people, but they don't have the need to be 'heard'.

Spectators may not be leaving comments or very active in forums, but their presence there is crucial for getting the word out further. They are every bit as passionate about the communities they observe as those with high participation levels. They will probably end up resenting a 'points' driven model that appeals to Gamers as this is not their style. The key to Spectators is to create enough content to keep their interest and to create safe spaces (and offline meetups) to tease them out from behind the scenes occasionally.

Planners - INTJ

Planners are your project managers and they are the best. A planner has the uncanny ability to imagine an event or an experience and account for every little detail. They are good delegators and hard workers. They are also extremely hard on themselves and strict perfectionists.

Planners expect a great deal from others and would not do well paired with Dreamers, Spectators or Networkers. To them, these types are flaky. Planners are people you want to pair with Workers and Organizers to move forward methodically on a project, especially an event.

Dreamers - INFP

Dreamers are the super positive, highly rosy version of a Wanderer. They will swoop into your community, pointing out all of the wonderful, delicious, awesome things that are going on, then swoop out just as fast. They have fun, crazy ideas that will lighten up any community.

You can't 'count' on Dreamers, but when they are around, everyone has fun. Dreamers will make everyone feel good, even if it's only temporary. The key to keeping Dreamers around is to keep the fun dial on high and have a mass of other Dreamers around.

Non-Community Member Archetypes:

Hecklers Spammers Vandals Self-Promoters Hi-Jackers Bozos Drive-Bys


Feedback is necessary and will be very helpful. :)