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The Web is Flat


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Guest lecture given at University College Maastricht.

Guest lecture given at University College Maastricht.

Published in: Technology, Business
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  • 1. The Web is Flat Sander Spek Infonomics & New Media European Centre for Digital Communication (INM-EC/DC), Zuyd University
  • 2. The World is Flat A brief history of the twenty-first century Thomas L. Friedman (2005, 2006, 2007)
  • 3. Book titles (and sales)   The World is Flat   The End of Poverty   In Defense of Globalization   Globalization and it's Discontents
  • 4. Book titles (and sales)   The World is Flat   1   The End of Poverty   515   In Defense of Globalization   20,602   Globalization and it's Discontents  52,196 (On selling lists, according to Leamer, 2006)
  • 5. Lecture overview   A flat world.   The flat web, meaning:   Open source. Web2.0 and user-generated content. Source-generated content. Open content. Embedded Publishing.
  • 6. Q: So, what does ‘flat’ mean?
  • 7. Q: So, what does ‘flat’ mean? A: Euhm... ‘change’, sort of.
  • 8. Changes…   Berlin Wall   Offshoring   Netscape   Supply chaining   Workflow software   Insourcing   Open sourcing   In-forming   Outsourcing   The Steroids
  • 9. …and convergence   … of flatteners     … of horizontal value chains     … of the world (geographically)
  • 10. From world to web
  • 11. Open source     development methodology       access to a product’s source
  • 12.   Free as in ‘freedom’, not as in ‘free beer’.
  • 13.   Although…
  • 14. Or how about a free car?
  • 15. Web 2.0?
  • 16.   Web 2.0 is the business revolution in the computer industry caused by the move to the internet as platform, and an attempt to understand the rules for success on that new platform.     Tim O'Reilly (2006)
  • 17. Web 2.0 patterns (O'Reilly, 2005)
  • 18. Web 2.0 patterns (O'Reilly, 2005)
  • 19. Web 2.0 patterns (O'Reilly, 2005)   Data is the Next Intel Inside
  • 20. Web 2.0 patterns (O'Reilly, 2005)   Users Add Value
  • 21. Web 2.0 patterns (O'Reilly, 2005)   Network Effects by Default
  • 22. Web 2.0 patterns (O'Reilly, 2005)   Some Rights Reserved
  • 23. Web 2.0 patterns (O'Reilly, 2005)   The Perpetual
  • 24. Web 2.0 patterns (O'Reilly, 2005)   Cooperate, don't control!
  • 25. Web 2.0 patterns (O'Reilly, 2005)   Software above the level of a   single device
  • 26. User- generated content
  • 27. Bradley Horowitz:
  • 28. User-generated content   Tags., Flickr,   Weblogs. LiveJournal. MySpace,   Media. MySpace, DeviantArt, Flickr, YouTube.   Wikis. Wikipedia,, WikiMaas.   Social Networking. Facebook, MySpace, Hyves, LinkedIn.   Etcetera.
  • 29. The Wisdom of Crowds   ‘‘Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow’’
  • 30. Wikipedia’s track record   English (Oct 2006)   > 1.4 Million English articles   > 800.000 new articles a day     Dutch   > 400.000 Dutch articles (last week)     Studies by a.o. c’t Magazine and Nature  
  • 31. Community success   1. Individual value     2. Collective value     3. General value
  • 32. So, is this all great?
  • 33. NO!
  • 34. [I am] actually convinced that people will eventually have had enough of the nonsense, and they will want to pay for good quality. At a certain point nobody wants to watching shitting dogs on YouTube anymore. It may be free, it remains a waste of time. Andrew Keen
  • 35.   Copyright     Copyleft     Public Domain
  • 36. Copyleft   Takes the best of both worlds.     Using copyright laws, to free works of certain rights.     e.g., GFDL, Creative Commons
  • 37. GFDL   General Public License (GNU-GPL) for software.   Free Documentation License (GNU-FDL) for documentation.   In short: attribution and viral.
  • 38. Creative Commons   BY – attribution SA – share alike (viral) NC – non-commercial ND – no derivatives
  • 39. Consequences (1)   More legal use of works.     More works to use for consumers.     Remove barriers for knowledge sharing.
  • 40. Consequences (2)   One laptop per child (OLPC)     a.k.a. $100 laptop     Free software   Free knowledge
  • 41. Lawrence Lessig
  • 42. Changes for newspaper media
  • 43. Embedded publishing?
  • 44. UGC SGC
  • 45.   Journalistic sources start publishing.     Competition for traditional media?     Or complementary?
  • 46. Examples   PSV     UNIZO     Tiberghien     First Monday     Herman Van Rompuy
  • 47. Consequences for traditional media?
  • 48. Conclusions   .........
  • 49. Literature
  • 50. The Flat World   The works of   James Surowiecki (2005) Marshall McLuhan The Wisdom of Crowds   The works of   Yochai Benkler (2006) Manuel Castells The Wealth of Networks       Thomas Friedmann (2005)   Henry Jenkins (2006) The World Is Flat Convergence Culture
  • 51. The Flat Web   Chris Anderson (2006)   Andrew Keen (2007) The Long Tail The Cult of the Amateur (or the Wired article   from 2004)     Clay Shirky (2008) Here Comes Everybody   Don Tapscott and Anthony Williams (2006) Wikinomics      
  • 52. Embedded Free Culture Publishing   Stuff by Lawrence Lessig   Our upcoming report (e.g. on YouTube)
  • 53. Comics courtesy of   Gaping Void   XKCD   (Hugh McLeod)   (Randall Munroe)           Toothpaste For Dinner   Married To The Sea   (Drew)   (Drew and Nathalie Dee)