Elle Meredith, who published a blog called Internet Studies, has published an academic case study on 9rules as a virtual community.
It’s an interesting and fascinating read if you’re interested in how large virtual communities are created, maintained, nurtured, and their evolution over time. Elle does a great job of telling most of the key facts of the history of 9rules.
9rules started as an idea Paul Scrivens had to aggregate quality blog posts in one place in order to drive traffic to both the blogs and the Network site. Differently to other social content networks, where everyone’s post can appear and get voted by readers, on 9rules the blogs are selected by the site staff , which make the decision whether the blog publishes quality content or not. Qualities that are being sought in a site are passion, quality writing, consistency, wide range of topics, blog design while not hosted on free blogging service sites.
The entire report is available as a PDF file as well.