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Shirky, Chapter 2

February 4, 2012

The two different conditions that happen within Chapters one and two of Shirky relate to the practice of Wikipedia editors through the idea that people can come together and create something for the world to see. The most basic relationship is the fact that these people who post things to their blogs to get more people involved are all common day people. These blogs are usually a single person posting while others comment and post their own opinions, Wikipedia entries change over time because people are able to edit what ever they choose. In chapter two of Shirky, one of the first points made is the fact that it is hard to manage many different people because they all have different preferences and opinions. People are going to put their opinions out there and others will comment on it with their own. Wikipedia entries are harder to manage because it is a collective effort to create.

I see this as a problem but also something that has the potential to be good. I think it is hard to make a collective decision that everyone in a group agrees with. So in the situation that Wikipedia editors need to agree on the same concept for a certain entry, it can be a hassle to have people try and agree on the same thing. But I also think that the more people that are involved in a situation, like Shirky’s chapter one phone blog, the more you can get done. There is a split decision, on the one hand if you have one person working a project it will get done fast because there are no other opinions getting in the way of getting it done. But, with a collective effort of having many people, you can get things done, maybe not the fastest, but it may have a great effect. I think this is why the system of having a manager overlooking many different people work is the best. The company knows that the one person (the manager) will be able to make decisions to get things done, but you also have the collective creative side that makes a great effort on a project. Overall, I understand the system and in my opinion I think that this is something that works.

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