We need your help!
Today, Disaster.Com is primarily managed by the owner and a couple of wonderful volunteers to help moderate the forums. The site owner is managing the social media, website link requests, site promotion, article writing, thread starting, moderation, design, technology, responding to users, and – when time permits – participating. This is WAY too much for one person to handle.
If you have ANY time to help, we’d love to have your assistance! We’ve included brief information about various roles below. If you have an interest, please fill out the form at the bottom of this page AFTER you’ve read through the roles.
Identify topics in the forums that are interesting and/or timely, write a promotional message about the topic, and schedule the item for publication through our online system (it can all be done via one click with a Chrome plugin). Also, do general promotions on social media for the site to attract new membership – WITHOUT coming across as being spammy. Social media updates are done 4-8 times per day.
Website Link Requests
We need to find more sites to link to us. Your time would be spent searching the Internet, identifying pages that link to sites such as ours, tracking down a contact for the site, requesting a link be added (nicely) and then following up several times if there is no response. The more links we get, the more people that see our site and the better that we’ll rank on search engines. BUT – the links need to be real links – not fake links tucked into unrelated content. It’s not tough to do this.
In addition to getting links, we also need to find news sites, associations and groups with newsletters, social media interest groups (for example, on LinkedIn and Facebook) and other outlets that would be willing to publish a short article about us. I would prefer to find people with some experience in the press or public relations to help out with this area, but I’m interested in speaking with anyone willing to volunteer!
Our motto is “Get help, Give help”, and that’s what you’ll be doing here. Today, we have a section on the forum called “Disaster.Com Articles”. When we have enough articles, we’ll have a real homepage and allow people to browse through our resources (with author links for those who care). What do we need? We need people to write 750+ word articles on topics ranging from disaster preparation, to what to do, to response, to post-disaster support and what to do. We need business people to write on topics such as disaster recovery and business continuity. We need researchers to write on the state of the world or other topics. The sky is the limit – because today we’re primarily focusing on disasters on planet earth. Writers need to have excellent English spelling and grammar, be able to provide sources and links in their articles and the articles have to be useful in some way. Not everyone is good at this, but if you like writing and can create quality articles, we want you! Take a look at our Disaster.Com articles section for examples.
We would like to provide reviews for disaster preparedness products, survival products, forecast and measurement products (like weather stations), and any other products that would be relevant to our community. We’re looking for volunteers to write unbiased, thoughtful and useful reviews of products and post them on the site. It is preferable that the reviewer has used the product or has access to it for purposes of the review.
We always need new and interesting topics to discuss on the site. Here, you’ll be volunteering to keep an eye on the news for recent disasters and crises, or topical information of interest, and we’ll ask you to start new threads for people to discuss.
Unfortunately, not every post is good. Some are spam. Some contain blatantly wrong information. Some are inflammatory or break rules of the site. Sometimes people just need help or have a question. Sometimes threads are started in the wrong area. Moderators police the site, remove offending posts, ban users, move posts, answer questions and generally make sure that the forums stay useful, tolerant and clean. Please Note: To be a moderator, we request that you have made at least 30 useful posts (i.e. not “Me too!” and “I agree!” types of posts) on the site AND have AT LEAST a reputation of 30.
There’s not a ton we can do with the current design, but there are some things we can do to make it look better, be more accessible for mobile devices or have better usability. In addition, we will be launching a WordPress component to the site once we have enough articles. We need people who have a good eye and expertise for design and usability to make the site better. We also need people with experience in vBulletin, WordPress, PHP, CSS, HTML to make the site function better. Help!
We’re looking for help in systems management, support, architecture and security. Do you know MySQL, Linux, caching tools and systems, scalability, system security, etc.? We don’t, so we’d love your help!
If you can make a few hours a week available to help, I would appreciate it. If you are OK with it, we’ll list your name on the site as a volunteer and you’ll receive a special badge under your name on posts to identify your efforts.
We understand that you are volunteering, but we also want to make sure that each of our volunteers maintains a high level of quality in each area that they participate. Even though we provide this site for free, our user experience is of the utmost importance to us!
Fill out the form below with your information, and we’ll be back to you shortly!