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Last year, I formed a community for open source developers where people can ask for help for their opensource projects and community members can support help seekers.

There are some communities who are already doing the same work. But as they're hosted on some personal servers, they need to face some financial challenges. Even some communities have been closed in 3-4 years. Hence, I opted to utilize the free resources available and use the Github ecosystem to sustain long.

After a month of opening this opensource team I received feedback that I'm doing it for my own benefit. Though I asked for clarification and explained that the idea arose from my need but it is open for the world, I really didn't understand how it can benefit me only.

Keeping the feedback aside, I spend some regular time to guide new members. And it looks like they're not much motivated.

I can't spend more time as I have to manage other opensource projects as well. So should I stop managing this community?

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    Do not base your decision on that one critique ('own benefit') - especially on the internet, opinions are cheap. – Jan Doggen Feb 12 at 8:15
  • I agree. I must focus on what I think before what will others think. – Amit Kumar Gupta Feb 13 at 12:45
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If possible, no, you should not stop managing your community. Once you create a community and people are relying on it to get answers to their problems, you should not shut it down unless completely necessary. It seems that the only problem is a minor financial issue. Unless this turns into a big issue, keep going with your community.

If you seriously are not able to continue managing it, make an announcement that you need someone else to take your place. Announce it a while before you leave and give it quite a bit of visibility. Then defer the responsibility over to someone else.

You also said the topic your community covers is also covered elsewhere. Depending on the exact community and situation, you could join the other community and allow users to ask questions there instead. Of course, no two communities are the same and a lot of times this just doesn't work out, so this probably isn't the best option.

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Creating a successful, growing and living community isn't easy. You need endurance, patience and motivation. It's not reprehensible if you have a personal benefit - even a monetary one - from running a community. You take responsibility for it and you put a lot of time and work into it so why shouldn`t you have a benefit from it?

  • Thanks. You motivated me to maintain it at least as a side project. It might grow some day. And even if it doesn't I'll not be losing anything. – Amit Kumar Gupta Feb 13 at 12:44

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