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People have jobs. (Well, some do.) A job is a way to earn your living. It’s a way to feel better about yourself. It’s a way to improve your skills.

But a calling is different. It’s a path to bliss. It requires leadership. It requires stamina. It requires drive. It requires passion. It requires an understanding of your values. And we know that there are plenty of you who have a calling to be (drum roll please)...

A moderator.

When you’re a young content website just getting started, you have a chicken and egg problem: you want communities and content to bring in users, and you need users to bring in content and develop communities. Such is one of our many challenges. Additionally, and we hope we’re wrong, we don’t expect that most are going to initially fork over 1,000 karma to start new communities (even though one of the benefits in doing so is that you own the “brand”).

So we’ve taken the liberty to help get this party started. We’ve selected some of the top 500 subreddits from the esteemed reddit.com and set them up on valME. That provides you an easy place to post, which is dirt-cheap (not to mention that you probably got much of your initial karma for free). And, although it might come back to bite us (or scratch us), we have not initially setup /cats. We’re dog people anyway. But we did setup /pets.

We need moderators to take a leadership role and help us build the communities. Those initial moderators will have a ground-floor opportunity to help set direction. Who knows? Perhaps in the future, for some of those moderators who really make a difference, we might even recognize you by transferring community ownership.

It’s pretty difficult to describe the ideal moderator, as it really depends on too many factors. But, generally, we’re looking for people who :

  • Have a passion for the community's topic
  • Have a great vision for the community’s potential and can develop the rules, roles, and processes to support it
  • Encourage communications and community participation into that vision
  • Are willing to discuss their motivations for the community’s direction
  • Minimize consternation (which is not to be confused with minimizing debate)
  • Are polite
  • Post and comment on content
  • Have patience to deal with nonsense (e.g., emotional situations, abusive users, flagged content/spam, trolls)
  • Communicate clearly why content was removed when it is removed
  • Encourage fairness
  • Encourage respect
  • Are user experience/.css experts who can make a difference in how the community is visually laid out
  • Are not shy

None of these are necessarily deal-breakers. If you’re interested, feel free to comment here (or message me) as to how you’re a fit and include some of your background. Also, we’ll check to see if you’re someone who leads by example (e.g., have you been posting and commenting in line with the above).

If we haven’t yet created a community that you would prefer to moderate, but your karma is somewhat limited at this time, message me and let’s discuss it. I’m sure we can work something out.

Come be a part of building something great.

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