Lobsters now has an invitation queue, an idea I borrowed from YayHooray.
I often get e-mails asking for invites but I don’t want to keep giving out so many from my own account. When I tell those people to try to find someone on the user tree that they know, they understandably say it’s too difficult to search the whole thing just by username.
With the invitation queue (now linked to from the login page), users can submit their name, e-mail address, and a brief note like URLs to their Github profiles or other websites. They receive an e-mail that they must confirm, and then their name and note show up on the invitation queue page. Any logged-in users can browse the queue and look for people they know (or perhaps can easily verify as being a real, reasonable person) and click “Send Invitation” to instantly invite them.