The most interesting existing classifications in my opinion are:
1. Hagel and Armstrong (1997) divided commercial communities into "consumer-oriented" and "business-to-business".
2. Gupta & Kim (2004) divided communities based on their goals: fantasy (the goal is pleasure), interest (sharing information and knowledge on a particular topic), operation (goal - selling) and communication (building relationships, customer service).
3. Hagel and Armstrong in collaboration with Riding (2002) identified four other types of communities based on the types of technologies used: chat rooms, newsletters, and newsgroups (bulletin boards). Additionally, these communities can be divided into asynchronous (newsgroups) and synchronous (chat rooms, instant messengers).
4. Markus (2002) proposed the division of communities into three types, depending on their orientation: social, professional, and commercial.
5. Hummel & Lechner (2002) identify five types of communities: 1) gaming - participants play online games, discuss issues related to them; 2) communities of interest - discussions, common interests; 3) - "consumer-for-consumer" - participants exchange goods without the participation of commercial structures; 4) - "business-to-consumers" - participants discuss products or services, create environments that facilitate purchases 5) - "business-to-business" - people of the same profession interact in common affairs.
Based on the above classifications, I suggested distinguishing 4 types of internet-communities based on communications character.
1) Community of communion. Communications character is informal, connections inside - many-to-many (each participant's connection and how it affects each other), each person is the source of emotions and feelings for others.
2) Community of information's consumers. Communications character is informal or formal, connections inside - one-to-many, only one person is the source of emotions, feelings, and news for others.
3) Community of professionals. Communications character is formal, connections inside - many-to-many, each person is the source of information and knowledge for others. Each person has his or her own goal.
4) Community of makers. Communications character is informal or formal, connections inside - many-to-many, each person is the source of emotions, feelings and/or information and knowledge for others. All participants have a common goal - to make a new product or service.