Tuesday, July 3, 2007

What is community?

The courses in my field are always changing. The crisis class I teach can use the news as a source of information and inspiration each quarter. A new class that I have been asked to organize "Community" is more of a challenge. I met briefly with Mary Lou Song (earliest employee and founding member of eBay. She has consulted on the topic of community. We plan to talk some more to help the IMC students understand the richness of the reach to various stakeholders that the newer technology provides. A long reading list starting with Surowiecki's The Wisdom on Crowds, Rheingold Smart Mobs, Tapscott and Williams on Wikinomics, Le Bon The Crowd (for perspective) and a range of books on blogging (Naked Conversations, Blog Marketing,) Ahonen and Moore on Communities Dominate Brands and a wide range of books on the digital divide seem to be related. This must be sorted out, but some history (mobs), some policy challenges (divide), some technology (InfoLab at NU), some entertainment (Fans, Bloggers and Gamers, by Jenkins) and some business need to be combined. Experiments in You Tube, blogging, podcasts, Second Life may be useful. More to come.

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