The Participatory Turn
     in Social Life Online




Trebor Scholz
Department of Media Study
trebor@thing.net
Creative Co...
•part 2
 The Ineptitude and Affordances of the Crowd




                                               2
The networked public sphere enables anyone to
go through her practical life observing the social
environment through new e...
Milieus of Influence
Blogs
LiveJournal, Blogger, Typepad, WordPress


Wikis
JotSpot (Google), Wikispaces

Tagging & Social...
Peer production

Immersive entertainment

Encyclopedias

News & commentary

Production used to be constrained to large
(ph...
CI & the Blogosphere

Comments

 Tags
 Feeds
                 Feeds            Bookmarks




                             ...
CI & the Blogosphere

Comments

 Tags
 Feeds
                 Feeds            Bookmarks




                             ...
CI & the Blogosphere

Comments

 Tags
 Feeds
                 Feeds            Bookmarks




                             ...
8 days after a video was posted
     showing how to pick the lock in
     30 seconds using a pen,
     Kryptonite recalled...
•Collective Intelligence




                           8
The full impact of such technology on collective intelligence and
political effort has yet to be felt, but the anti-global...
Collective intelligence is the capacity of
human communities to evolve towards higher
order complexity and harmony, throug...
Google uses the knowledge
                      millions of people have
                      stored in the World Wide
   ...
http://tinyurl.com/yp4asq

                            12
When you run SETI@home on your computer, it will use part of
the computer's CPU power, disk space, and network bandwidth.
...
Collective intelligence changes
the role of expert knowledge
as sole authority




                                  14
15
Motivations


Social connectedness
Psychological well-being
Gratification
Material gain




                              ...
EDUCATION

Opening up of                           Open
                                     Educational
                M...
http://tinyurl.com/2gk6jv
                            18
•Effects




           19
The networked public sphere is a fact, not a fad
 Reality rather than utopia

Autonomy here is not so much a philosophical...
Enhanced Autonomy


1) Improves capacity to do more for and by
themselves

2) Enhances capacity to do more in loose
common...
Method

When evaluating democratization we need to
compare the actualities of the networked public
sphere to the reality o...
Information overload


Filtration, relevance, and accreditation

Mutual pointing, peer review, pointing to original
source...
Novel Forms of Publishing and Research


From writing to a limited audience to authoring for a broad audience




        ...
Commercial Mass Media
What are the failures of commercial mass media
as platforms for public discourse?




              ...
Objections

Babel Objection
You can speak but who listens




                                WoN p 10
                   ...
Individuals are less susceptible to manipulation by a class and/or
owners of mass communication media

They are more likel...
Limits of Mass Media


Small cadre of commercial journalists

Commercial journalists are given inordinate
power to shape o...
Enhanced Individual Autonomy




Newly expanded practical freedom: to act and
cooperate to improve the experience of
democ...
Critical and self-reflective practice




 200 million members on Myspace
 100 million blogs-- people with a writing pract...
Cost of becoming a speaker lowered

For authoritarian countries it is harder and more
expensive to maintain control over p...
From Copyright to Creative Commons

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0




                        ...
The Creative Commons (CC) is a non-profit organization
devoted to expanding the range of creative work available
for other...
From taxonomy
to folksonomy




            http://tinyurl.com/3bhbaa
            http://tinyurl.com/2e8mvh
            ht...
Folksonomy
(also known as collaborative tagging , social classification,
social indexing, social tagging, and other names)...
People come back to Digg.com
  because of the community



                               36
?
As much as 28% of Americans have tagged
Pew Internet Life Project: Report on Tagging




           http://www.pewintern...
?
     ??
    ?     38
The Heavy Metal Umlaut, Jon Udell




http://weblog.infoworld.com/udell/gems/umlaut.html




                             ...
•Crowdsourcing




                 40
•Crowdsourcing

 Crowdsourcing is a neologism for the act of taking a job
 traditionally performed by an employee or contr...
http://tinyurl.com/3b8f5n
                            42
Threadless.com
The company prints T-shirts with designs submitted
to its Web site (for free).
Expected revenue in 2007: $2...
44
Lego asks inclined costumers to design new Lego sets.




                                                        44
The “Consumption” of a Service Increases Its Value



                     Over 1 Billion User Reviews
                   ...
- end -

please direct comments, additions, etc
          to trebor@thing.net




                                         46
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The Ineptitude and Affordances of the Crowd

  1. 1. The Participatory Turn in Social Life Online Trebor Scholz Department of Media Study trebor@thing.net Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 1
  2. 2. •part 2 The Ineptitude and Affordances of the Crowd 2
  3. 3. The networked public sphere enables anyone to go through her practical life observing the social environment through new eyes -- the eyes of someone who could inject a thought, a criticism, a concern into public debate. Empowerment p 11 3
  4. 4. Milieus of Influence Blogs LiveJournal, Blogger, Typepad, WordPress Wikis JotSpot (Google), Wikispaces Tagging & Social Bookmarks del.ico.us del.icio.us Social Filtering Digg, Reddit, StumbledUpon XML Syndication (e.g., RSS) Bloglines, Technorati Social Networks Facebook, Twitter, Xing 4
  5. 5. Peer production Immersive entertainment Encyclopedias News & commentary Production used to be constrained to large (physical) capital (i.e. steel production) (WoN) p 5 5
  6. 6. CI & the Blogosphere Comments Tags Feeds Feeds Bookmarks Blogs 6
  7. 7. CI & the Blogosphere Comments Tags Feeds Feeds Bookmarks Blogs 6
  8. 8. CI & the Blogosphere Comments Tags Feeds Feeds Bookmarks Blogs 6
  9. 9. 8 days after a video was posted showing how to pick the lock in 30 seconds using a pen, Kryptonite recalled 380,000 locks Businesses can’t stop the conversation... so they try to harness it for your benefit 7
  10. 10. •Collective Intelligence 8
  11. 11. The full impact of such technology on collective intelligence and political effort has yet to be felt, but the anti-globalization movement relies heavily on e-mail, cell phones, pagers, SMS, and other means of organizing before, during, and after events. illustration edited by TS http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collective_intelligence 9
  12. 12. Collective intelligence is the capacity of human communities to evolve towards higher order complexity and harmony, through such innovation mechanisms as differentiation and integration, competition and collaboration. http://tinyurl.com/2gk6jv 10
  13. 13. Google uses the knowledge millions of people have stored in the World Wide Web to provide remarkably useful answers to users' questions http://cci.mit.edu/ Wikipedia motivates thousands of volunteers around the world to create the world's largest encyclopedia 11
  14. 14. http://tinyurl.com/yp4asq 12
  15. 15. When you run SETI@home on your computer, it will use part of the computer's CPU power, disk space, and network bandwidth. You can control how much of your resources are used by SETI@home, and when it uses them. http://setiathome.berkeley.edu/info.php 13
  16. 16. Collective intelligence changes the role of expert knowledge as sole authority 14
  17. 17. 15
  18. 18. Motivations Social connectedness Psychological well-being Gratification Material gain WoN p 6 16
  19. 19. EDUCATION Opening up of Open Educational Mass Collaboration Classrooms Resources 17
  20. 20. http://tinyurl.com/2gk6jv 18
  21. 21. •Effects 19
  22. 22. The networked public sphere is a fact, not a fad Reality rather than utopia Autonomy here is not so much a philosophical concept but an actual individual experience WoN p 9 20
  23. 23. Enhanced Autonomy 1) Improves capacity to do more for and by themselves 2) Enhances capacity to do more in loose commonality with others (without the hierarchies of traditional organizations) 3) Improves capacity of individuals to do more in organizations that are outside the market sphere WoN p 8 21
  24. 24. Method When evaluating democratization we need to compare the actualities of the networked public sphere to the reality of commercial mass media. Forget the idealized projections of the early and mid-90s. WoN p 10 22
  25. 25. Information overload Filtration, relevance, and accreditation Mutual pointing, peer review, pointing to original sources of claim Local clusters, peer-review-like qualities WoN p 12/13 23
  26. 26. Novel Forms of Publishing and Research From writing to a limited audience to authoring for a broad audience 24
  27. 27. Commercial Mass Media What are the failures of commercial mass media as platforms for public discourse? 25
  28. 28. Objections Babel Objection You can speak but who listens WoN p 10 26
  29. 29. Individuals are less susceptible to manipulation by a class and/or owners of mass communication media They are more likely to author their own lives, perhaps perceive a broader range of possibilities Influence of mass media decreases 27
  30. 30. Limits of Mass Media Small cadre of commercial journalists Commercial journalists are given inordinate power to shape opinion and information This power is for sale 28
  31. 31. Enhanced Individual Autonomy Newly expanded practical freedom: to act and cooperate to improve the experience of democracy, justice, development, critical culture, and community WoN p 9 29
  32. 32. Critical and self-reflective practice 200 million members on Myspace 100 million blogs-- people with a writing practice 30
  33. 33. Cost of becoming a speaker lowered For authoritarian countries it is harder and more expensive to maintain control over public spheres (China, Singapore, Vietnam) Cost of sending an email, setting up a web page is low 31
  34. 34. From Copyright to Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 32
  35. 35. The Creative Commons (CC) is a non-profit organization devoted to expanding the range of creative work available for others legally to build upon and share. The organization has released several copyright licenses known as Creative Commons licenses. These licenses, depending on the one chosen, restrict only certain rights (or none) of the work. 33
  36. 36. From taxonomy to folksonomy http://tinyurl.com/3bhbaa http://tinyurl.com/2e8mvh http://tinyurl.com/3blj62 34
  37. 37. Folksonomy (also known as collaborative tagging , social classification, social indexing, social tagging, and other names) is the practice and method of collaboratively creating and managing tags to annotate and categorize content. In contrast to traditional subject indexing, metadata is not only generated by experts but also by creators and consumers of the content. Usually, freely chosen keywords are used instead of a controlled vocabulary.[1] 35
  38. 38. People come back to Digg.com because of the community 36
  39. 39. ? As much as 28% of Americans have tagged Pew Internet Life Project: Report on Tagging http://www.pewinternet.org/PPF/r/201/report_display.asp 37
  40. 40. ? ?? ? 38
  41. 41. The Heavy Metal Umlaut, Jon Udell http://weblog.infoworld.com/udell/gems/umlaut.html http://tinyurl.com/2e8mvh 39
  42. 42. •Crowdsourcing 40
  43. 43. •Crowdsourcing Crowdsourcing is a neologism for the act of taking a job traditionally performed by an employee or contractor, and outsourcing it to an undefined, generally large group of people, in the form of an open call. For example, the public may be invited to develop a new technology, carry out a design task, refine an algorithm or help analyze large amounts of data. Below-market wages, or no wages at all. No written contracts, non-disclosure agreements, or employee agreements or agreeable terms with crowdsourced employees. 41
  44. 44. http://tinyurl.com/3b8f5n 42
  45. 45. Threadless.com The company prints T-shirts with designs submitted to its Web site (for free). Expected revenue in 2007: $20 million 43
  46. 46. 44
  47. 47. Lego asks inclined costumers to design new Lego sets. 44
  48. 48. The “Consumption” of a Service Increases Its Value Over 1 Billion User Reviews Over 1 Million User Reviews per Day 3.5 Million Paying Users 45
  49. 49. - end - please direct comments, additions, etc to trebor@thing.net 46
  50. 50. 47
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