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Business - Written by on Monday, October 13, 2008 22:36 - 0 Comments

Wikinomics Roundup: Week in Review

Welcome back to another edition of the Wikinomics Roundup: Week in Review, where I capture in brief, some of the thoughts, discoveries, and discussions that graced the blog throughout the past week.

This week in the roundup:

  • Jeff DeChambeau discussed privacy and digital surveillance
  • Dan Herman introduced us to ‘vote swapping’ and identified how this Web 2.0 technology now has the potential to influence elections
  • Don Tapscott highlighted some new research findings in order address a common misconception about video games and gamers
  • Denis Hancock reviewed some of the pitfalls of the traditional crowdsourcing model and introduced us to Poptent


On October 6, 2008…Jeff DeChambeau discussed privacy and digital surveillance:

This is Gloucester, a UK based blog, is reporting that the Government Communications Headquarters is pitching a plan that would allow it to monitor all SMS and email messages sent and recieved in the UK. The plan, slated to cost English taxpayers a potential $12bn, would be the country’s largest surveillance program, and adds another data point to the security vs. privacy debate.

As Michael Geist wrote last week, the Internet has become a system that never forgets anything, and there are more and more tools that allow people to mine information from the darkest corners of the Internet.

So, are email and sms messages, like public discussions, simply part of a technology that is inherently tracable, or given the targeted nature of email and sms, are they granted a special class of privacy from the rest of the bits that float bout the ‘tubes?

Weigh in on the privacy debate @
Hey England, time to learn about PGP!


On October 7, 2008…Dan Herman introduced us to ‘vote swapping’ and identified how this Web 2.0 technology now has the potential to influence elections:

A few months ago University of Ottawa professor Michael Geist wrote that 27 MP’s across Canada (9% of all MPs) had won their ridings by less than 1000 votes.  The potential impact of vote swap is thus rather significant.

The second example is www.voteforenvironment.ca . Like the former example, it takes aim at the Conservative government, this time for their environmental record. Their strategy is similar to Vote Swap as it highlights closely contested swing ridings and recommends to would-be voters which of the opposition parties in those ridings would be best positioned to win the riding in the Oct. 14 election.

What do you think of vote swapping and the technology behind it? Share your thoughts @
More on voting and technology…


On October 7, 2008…Don Tapscott highlighted some new research findings in order address a common misconception about video games and gamers:

In my new book, Grown up Digital (a sequel to my 1997 intro to the Net Generation: Growing up Digital) I make the argument that this exposure to gaming and technology has helped enable a truly global and inter-connected generation that sees civic action as a part of their regular routine.

Amanda Lenhart, author of a report on the survey and a Senior Research Specialist with the Pew Internet & American Life Project, notes, “The stereotype that gaming is a solitary, violent, anti-social activity just doesn’t hold up. The average teen plays all different kinds of games and generally plays them with friends and family both online and offline.”

The survey certainly supports this view:

  • 52% of gamers report playing games where they think about moral and ethical issues.
  • 43% report playing games where they help make decisions about how a community, city or nation should be run.

Are you a videogame player, gamer alumni, or know someone who plays games?
Discuss their impact @ Kids, videogames and social activity


On October 10, 2008…Denis Hancock reviewed some of the pitfalls of the traditional crowdsourcing model and introduced us to Poptent:

What I particularly like about this “modified crowdsourcing” model is that it deals with some of the inequities inherent in more traditional platforms – too much power being given to the buyers, at the expense of the sellers.

Poptent has at least three elements that help deal with this. they are targeting the creation of a community of top-notch videographers with great skills, not the public at large. In order to participate on the site companies need to pony up $25 K in cash – which should be enough to limit “speculative requests”. Advertisers than pay something in the $5K – $7.5 K range to purchase ads they like. They are also upfront in noting (see Mark Schoneveld’s comment on October 8th at 11:19) that the contest model is not sustainable – they’ll have to evolve it over time, but you have to walk before you run.

Discuss your views, for and against, the Poptent model @
Poptent: A new community for crowdsourced advertising


And there you have it – The Wikinomics Roundup: Week in Review.

Check back next week for more original Wikinomics insight. Until next week…



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