I’m a huge fan of the Brains on Fire blog, especially after meeting Geno and Spike at BlogOrlando last fall. This crew is smart. Super smart. They don’t just get the cluetrain, they run circles around it.

From their latest post,

So now let me tell you why peer-to-peer works better: Because it’s peer-to-peer. I don’t care how good your intentions are if you come from inside the company, you’re still from inside the company and people aren’t going to trust you completely. You are a PR tool. You are doing your job. It’s been proven that the vast majority of people trust people “just like me.” One of my favorite things that Holly, Fiskateer #1, said to us during her training was, “I’m a crafter FIRST. And a Lead Fiskateer SECOND.” This is the honest, transparent perspective that only someone from the outside can bring. So the people in the community know where their loyalties lie. They are not part of the machine. They are part of the community.

The entire post is based on two different pathways for guiding community leadership. One is to pick a representative from within the company, and the other is to look to the community of users and empower them.

If you’ve been reading the cluetrain-a-day series, you’ll know which I (and the Cluetrain) (and Spike from Brains on Fire) recommend.

Great post, Spike!