Large groups require having a lot in common. What do people have in common that unites them and activates them? Anger.
I don’t have science to back anything up on my thoughts to the answer of this question, but I have some observations. When I attend forums online that are filled with various sizes, I find the bigger they get, the worse the response, the more disrespectful the disagreements get, and generally the LESS helpful they become. Imagine that, more resources in the form of varied knowledge, yet less helpful.
Some of this is attributable to contribution vs. association. That what starts out as a bunch of contributors, people seeking to learn from each other to find the truth, expands and gets filled with more associators, people who aren’t in for respectful conversation to find the truth, but to have their opinion heard in one direction only. No conversation, only disagreements.
Another thought is that the bigger the pool, the more extreme the viewpoints and experiences on the fringes. Eventually, these fringes start to get into destructive disagreements even with those who are moderate, and for those on the opposite fringe, it may even look something more like ideological warfare.
How can balance be found? On one hand, without shared experiences, the world continues to be polarized. Excluding people that don’t get the information from others doesn’t allow society to function in an “educated” way. At the same time, letting anyone in a group eventually destroys it. Contributors start to leave as they face huge criticisms and disrespect, rather than a polite conversation that moves ideas forward. Then the only thing left is a war zone between ideologies set in stone.
It’s possible this is a problem that will never have a solution, that as long as the world keeps spinning, this will be seeking it’s balance with new groups that will form and be productive only to eventually collapse and become something entirely different.
If you’re looking to start a group, it’s worth thinking about how this problem might affect you eventually and how to combat it.