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Week 3

The Strength of Weak Cooperation: An Attempt to Understand the Meaning of Web 2.0

Chistophe AGUITON & Dominique CARDON, Laboratoire SUSE, Fance, Telecom R&D

“The Strength of Weak Cooperation” was a densely detailed and information-saturated essay focusing on the changes occurring with consumer behaviour due to the development of what is being called Web 2.0. The essay looks closely at the BarCamp phenomenon and Coworking spaces, as well as analysing the behaviours of those using social networking and related websites such as Facebook, Flickr and Myspace.

There are same major points discussed within the essay. Aguiton & Cardon observe that consumers of internet sites and organisations are more and more heavily relying on other users content in order to produce their own. It is also found that users of the above mentioned and like sites utilise the available tools to their own means. That is, some use all the possible tools (example is Flickr: social networking, uploading, storing, sharing, tagging photos etc) and some may only use one of these features. Nonetheless, it only takes this small percentage of users of all the tools to create a network of information that is constantly consolidating and expanding these websites. Their argument is then consolidated to stress the need for web developers to maintain open-mindedness when it comes to the way the Web 2.0 is being used by consumers.

Aguiton & Cardon also look at how these “weak ties” (those that are not face to face in reality but originating in cyberspace), compare to some of the motions occurring in real time. They go into a study of BarCamp and Coworking spaces where meetings or spaces are initialized so that creatives and like-minded people can share their ideas and expand on others’ ideas. I think this is a great idea, particularly for those in the community who are information-hungry and willing to collaborate with like-minded folk in order to develop the next outstanding ideas and developments within society.

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