A Must Read Critic of “Web 2.0” As a Mechanism for Market Exploitation

Lost track of the number of times I nodded in agreement with this critique. Especially valuable for me is the lesson that investing so much hope in the hype – wanting the effects of social computing to be dramatic, immediate, and revolutionary – serves to limit the real potential and imagination we might otherwise harness from the steady advancement of internet technologies. Check it out.


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Allen Sheaprd


Thank you. He really underscores the use of “free labor’ yet the web is what we fill it with. Others make the browser, the wiki, the chat rooms, the GovLoop. We just fill it for ourselves.

Chris Hoffman

Great point, Allen. One shouldn’t take an argument about the individual’s benefit from or exploitation by the collective to either extreme. I think trends in profit sharing on the part of the forum host and contributor, as some online clothing customizers (e.g. zazzle.com) allow point toward the counter to his arguments as well – that a middle ground of shared utility can be achieved. Let’s not forget either that the exploited won’t passively remain so indefinitely. They’ll seek some equitable share of the benefits or abandon partcipation.