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Many of the other sites have social media accounts. I think we also should do the same. These are powerful way to communicate in the moderns world.

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  • Maybe someone could start us a Facebook page and twitter account. – yuttadhammo Sep 13 '14 at 10:52
  • I'm not sure, but I suspect that a Twitter account used to be set up automatically. Almost all older sites older than 7 months seem to have one (you can see this in this list below each site's name). However, the most recent sites don't have it so perhaps you now have to request one? – THelper Sep 13 '14 at 11:41
  • Let's get the info how this is done and get this going. – Suminda Sirinath S. Dharmasena Sep 13 '14 at 13:49
  • We need to get hold for somebody from SE who knows and get his help to walk us through the process and integration. – Suminda Sirinath S. Dharmasena Sep 13 '14 at 13:56
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    We do not set up per-site Twitter accounts anymore. They have not been shown to add any value, and Twitter now shuts them down more often than not because they are obviously run by robots. – hairboat Sep 15 '14 at 17:33
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Ok, I've created a twitter account:

https://twitter.com/Buddhism_SE

and a Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/buddhism.se

And set up an account with If This Then That:

https://ifttt.com/p/buddhismse/shared

So it will send new questions to both Twitter and Facebook.

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You are welcome to create social media accounts and use them however you like; however they must be clearly marked as not run or sanctioned by SE corporate. Something like "This page is administered by members of the Buddhism Stack Exchange community and not affiliated with Stack Exchange, Inc.". Stack Exchange logos (including the beta "Bu" logo) also can't be used by the page as a profile or header image.

Aside from all of that, I would encourage you to think about what you will be using these pages for. I mentioned above that we no longer automatically set up Twitter accounts for newly created sites. This decision was triggered by the fact that Twitter was shutting down the new accounts almost immediately after creation, making the creation process for these accounts take several weeks when the amount of return we got from those accounts barely warranted several minutes. Hardly any ever managed to scrape together more than a few hundred followers - a mere handful in the Twitter world. These accounts are robots shouting questions out into the void, and nobody is listening.

I would argue (and have done so in our internal discussions about social media) that an underfollowed and totally automated social feed is leaps and bounds worse for an entity's public image than having no presence at all. More briefly: not doing it is better than doing it poorly.

This community is free to do as it likes with these social accounts (provided that they follow the guidelines above). But first I recommend asking yourself what value you see these pages adding to your community.

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  • Thank you for the info and opinion. Why would you say it is worse than no presence? It seems like a useful way for people to keep up with the latest questions. Mind you, I'm thinking it wouldn't be entirely automated. – yuttadhammo Sep 18 '14 at 16:23
  • @yuttadhammo If it weren't entirely automated, it might be more useful as a way of interesting and attracting drive-by users. If it's just automated, it's a glorified RSS feed, and individuals can just... use RSS feeds however they see fit. – hairboat Sep 18 '14 at 18:17
  • Social media is inherently outward-facing; non-users of Buddhism Stack Exchange are going to encounter these accounts, even if that's not how they're intended to be used. If a potential's new user's first encounter with B.SE is "oh, that's that robot that spits out links I don't understand", we're unlikely to get them to come hang out with us. – hairboat Sep 18 '14 at 18:17
  • I guess I thought they might thing "oh, that's that cool list of interesting questions I can click on to see the answer to"... I'm still not convinced it is unappealing. Too bad we can't see where traffic to the site is coming from... – yuttadhammo Sep 19 '14 at 0:08
  • @yuttadhammo My personal opinion is that "Oh, yuttadhammo, that's that cool guy who posts really interesting stuff" is much more powerful than a robot account. After all, the power of a Stack Exchange site lies within its community--its human beings. You guys are what make this place interesting and useful. – hairboat Sep 19 '14 at 3:57
  • To me, it's the difference between two roommate wanted ads. "Come live in our house! It has big bay windows, hardwood floors, and a dishwasher." or "Come live with us! We're a bunch of astronauts who do macrame for charity and love to read medieval French poetry, and we have a room open in our house." I know which house I'd contact first--the one that led with what makes their house unique and awesome. – hairboat Sep 19 '14 at 4:00
  • Yes, but it's one thing to say that an automated feed is less useful than a human presence; it is another to say that it is less useful than no presence... – yuttadhammo Sep 19 '14 at 9:35
  • @yuttadhammo That's exactly what I meant, though. I believe that automated feeds can actually be detrimental. Not always, and it depends on how it's executed and used. – hairboat Sep 19 '14 at 15:25
  • This is ultimately up to you folks, of course. My recommendation is to keep the social in social media and reach out as humans, but if you have a killer strategy I'm just not understanding I will certainly not try to stop you. – hairboat Sep 19 '14 at 15:26
  • @yuttadhammo I'm worried I come off like a negative Nancy here, so I'll try to reframe. You guys are doing a great job already, and your desire and energy to get out and evangelize is extremely commendable. I just meant to encourage you to consider a greater strategy before setting up robots to shoot links into the ether, is all. – hairboat Sep 19 '14 at 16:31
  • No, it's not that, I was just surprised at the idea that it might actually hurt us to have an automated Facebook page. Maybe we should consider whether we can put together a Social Media team? – yuttadhammo Sep 20 '14 at 18:09

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