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Community Features in Joomla

I n the world of Web 2.0 dynamic content, a web site will sustain a broader audience if it can cultivate an active virtual community. Fortunately, Joomla is an ideal CMS for building such a community. You have already seen some of the built-in extensions (such as the Poll module) that can provide interactive features. In this chapter, you’ll examine other Joomla extensions that can offer users significant opportunities to interact with your site. You’ll also learn about some of the benefits and problems of deploying the community technologies.

Contrary to the perceptions of many webmasters, adding a virtual community doesn’t guarantee traffic increases. You can’t simply set up a web site and leave it running as users supply content and increase traffic. In fact, maintaining a virtual community often involves more work than maintaining a static site. However, like the interest paid on a deposit in a bank account, the work you put into the site will be compounded by the contributions of others.

Since you want your efforts to be multiplied, it is important to first define the direction where your Joomla site will be headed. It is vital that you have more than a general idea—you need a specific plan. Creating a site profile is a good way to figure out the role of your virtual community and its eventual destination.