Every day, millions of users log on to their favorite online forums and interact with others to get advice and discuss everything from the latest news and trends to their hobbies, professions, and whatever else strikes their fancy. Admin-istrators have to lead these communities, deal with difficult users, and choose moderators. Legal constraints, spammers, and technical issues can turn the excitement of running an online community into chaos. With the right guidance, however, running forums can be a pleasure. Patrick O'Keefe has spent years developing and managing online communities. Now, he shows readers how to make the right decisions about every aspect of their forums, including: - choosing a name and domain name - picking the right software - deciding on user options like avatars and private messaging - setting guidelines and dealing with violators - ensuring that posts stay on topic - settling online disputes among users - involving users and keeping the site interesting Managing Online Forums is the one book that shows site owners and administrators how to create a safe and entertaining community that users will return to again and again.