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Making it as an MMO blogger: An interview with top community managers

Shawn Schuster

Ahh, that eternal debate about what differentiates a gaming blogger from a gaming journalist. We could go on and on about specifics on both sides, but the fact is, we all have the same goals in mind: writing about what we love.

Ravious at Kill Ten Rats approached us with an idea he's been working on for a few months involving MMO bloggers and their relationship with community managers. We thought this was a brilliant idea as a valuable hub of information for MMO bloggers, and offered to help him get it kick-started. So we sent off his questions to nine of the top community managers in the industry to get their take on how bloggers can establish and grow a favorable working relationship with them. With so much information here, we broke it into two parts: one today and the conclusion tomorrow. Follow along for their answers to part one!

First, let's get to know the nine community and media people we interviewed:

David Bass - Former Online Community Representative, Cryptic Studios
David has worked as a community representative for both Flying Lab and Cryptic. He recently left Cryptic, but his answers were given before his departure. You can find his personal blog here.

Shaun Brodie - Online Community Representative, Cryptic Studios
Shaun is also known as Stormshade on the Cryptic forums, and recently took over as Community Manager for Champions Online, after the departure of David Bass. He can be followed on Twitter here.

Sean Kauppinen - Head of Community, Frogster America
Not only is Sean the head of community at Frogster America, but was also the founding CEO. Find out much more information on his impressive resume here.

Tami Baribeau - Associate Producer (Former Community Manager), Metaplace, Inc.
Tami, also known as Cuppycake, started out as a blogger herself. She continues to be an active and respected voice in community management and blogging.

Tricia Jenkins - Media Specialist, Fallen Earth, LLC
A relative newcomer to the scene, Tricia manages PR for the newly-launched Fallen Earth, and offers a fresh perspective for those looking to get into the industry.

Wonder Russell - Minister of Culture, Runic Games
In association with Wonder's awesome title as Minister of Culture, she handles public, community, media and community relations at Runic Games. You can find more information on her experience here.

Regina Buenaobra - Community Manager, ArenaNet, Inc
Regina also began her career as a respected blogger for many years, as well as the Community Leader at Xfire before moving over to ArenaNet to take on the well-established Guild Wars player community.

EM Stock - Studio Community Lead, Paragon Studios
EM's industry experience reaches back 19 years with such big-name companies as SOE, NCsoft, EA and SegaSoft. You can find out more information on her experience, as well as her current role with the City of Heroes community at her LinkedIn profile page.

Meghan Rodberg - Senior Manager, Online Community Relations, Turbine, Inc.

Not only is Meghan well-known in the LotRO and DDO communities as the aptly-named "Patience", she's been in the business of community relations since her time with Interplay in the late 1990s. You can find more information on her experience here.

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