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How SharePoint Community Membership Works

Community site template is a new feature in SharePoint 2013. It provides a forum experience in SharePoint.
Microsoft also mentions about four types of Communities and membership permissions. Details can be found here.

I'm producing the table mentioned in the above link, as this is the topic of today's post.

Private communityA community for sensitive information where you want to limit participation to specific users or groups.Grant Member permission only to those individuals or groups who are appropriate.None
Closed communityEveryone can view the content but only members with approved membership requests can contribute.Grant Visitor permissions to everyone. Require explicit requests to join.Enable access requests
Open community with explicit membershipEveryone can view the site and receives automatic approval upon joining.Grant Visitor permissions to everyone. Require explicit requests to join.Enable auto approval
Open communityEveryone has membership and can contribute to the community without having to explicitly join.Grant Member permissions to all.None

When I went through this table, it was not easy (my own observation) to understand the concept behind these types of communities. So I had to try each option to understand how Community Membership actually works. After trying out the possibilities, I thought I should explain in a better way. The end result is the below image.

I hope this image is self-explanatory, provided you have at least seen basics of Community. If you feel that this image is not accurate/complete or some details can be elaborated, please leave a comment.


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