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It’s Going to Be Okay

But first, a note of caution. It’s important to remember that, your users are not your enemy. There may be a few problem cases, and it’s important to handle them well. But you must never lose faith in your users. Don’t let the words of caution in this chapter scare you off—I truly believe that most people want to be good, productive members of their communities.

In fact, I believe that trust is the operating principle behind most successful community websites. Online auction site eBay (ebay.com), for example, features many ways for users to communicate with each other. Web boards and chat rooms fill the site, and users reputations there can make or break their auctions. The potential for troublemaking is great—one bored teenager with a borrowed credit card could ruin auctions all over the site in an evening.


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