Can we draw a relational angle to the ‘quiet quitting’ conversation going on and compare it to ‘quiet community quitting’?
Let’s cut the shit: the real reason this entire conversation is happening is that companies are not loyal to their workers. If workers become upset with their working conditions, the most common refrain from those in power is to ask why they aren’t more grateful for what they’ve got. — Ed Zitron
I’ve yet to see any TikToks that explicitly connect the dots between “quiet quitting” and what’s long been known within labor activism as “work to rule,” which is when a group of workers collectively decide to really do the bare minimum of their job descriptions. (If you’ve seen them, please post in the comments!) The gears of production — in a factory or a fast food kitchen or an office — never grind to a halt, as they would in a work stoppage. They just become sluggish and intolerable. The goal: communicate just how much employers depend on motivated, engaged workers who feel adequately and fairly compensated for the work that they do. That communication only actually produces change, though, when there are enough people doing it together that it becomes impossible to ignore.
As is the ‘is community popping’ discussion, with a specific emphasis from @Kaelon:
I mean, of course, community members will (quiet) quit if there isn’t respect for them, there isn’t enough value and where companies seek to calculate ROI that excludes the exact things communities are supposed to value.
I’ve noticed my own in-community behaviour changing over the past year. I’ve become significantly more “transactional” and less of a “member”.
That is to say, I take something, then give something, then leave. I go to a community when I need something from it, I give as much as I get, and then I carry on with my life until some moment causes me to need that community again.
I don’t know what the root cause is though. I’m significantly more time poor this year compared to last (thanks, offspring ) and I’m also much more aware of my time and energy as finite resources nowadays.
So am I quiet quitting those communities? I don’t think the intention is ever to quit, I think I’m just changing my relationship with online social spaces to make sure it’s worth the precious time and energy I put into them.
I think we try and see patterns and make sense of things we observe but I think people just drift in and out of communities over time. I don’t think it’s often strategic or intentional.
I can think of several communities I’ve become transient in through no fault of the community. Habits, hobbies and interests wax and wane and it is normal for communities to experience tides that swell and recede. This is especially true of transactional communities where members primarily seek something they can take away from someone else.
I was an intensely active member of an electric vehicle forum while I was researching and buying one, but as the collection day gets closer, my needs have changed so I visit the community less.
Likewise in a running community I absorbed a lot of knowledge and then I was full enough to go out on my own.
I’m sure there’s a lot of reasons but I’ll be the grump and say: I think most communities aren’t providing enough value to members. They’re too broad (“join our community for marketers”), they’re too noisy (so many prompts, so little value), they’re not building habits, they’re measuring conversations instead of outcomes, they’re using noisy out of the box gamification and notifications, etc etc.
I think with the increase in the number of communities out there and the general online noise, we have to up our game. Checking the boxes is no longer enough.