I’ll Validate YOUR Crowdsource Market
October 19, 2011 § 2 Comments
Darren Brabham, “Crowdsourcing as a Model for Problem Solving: An Introduction and Cases” (2008)
Look you guys it’s a brave new world! Individual genius is out and the wisdom of crowds is in. CROWDS ARE SO HOT RIGHT NOW. But we’re not talking open-source collaboration, where everybody labors but nobody profits (or everybody profits equally, though it sort of depends on what you mean by “profit”). Crowdsourcing is a more negotiated process by which a non-centralized group puts their hivemind together for any number of reasons (indexing, marketing strategy, original content), often generating much gold for whatever corporate overlord. And the crowds are perfectly fine with this arrangement, they’re like lol it’s cool, happy to help, because whatever it is they’re doing they like it, and want to. Sure sure there’s plenty of room for bad faith hegemonic exploitation, that’s a given, but the model has tons of democratizing potential, and that’s pretty cool!! Here let’s talk about Threadless, istockphoto and InnoCentive, which sounds like jailbait birth control! Should have crowdsourced that one LOL
Linked to a link to a link to a link to a link linking back to “crowdsourcing,” seemed as good a clip as any.
Last night while hanging out on my favorite website, Yahoo News, somebody posted a picture of the strangest penis I have ever seen. And I spend a lot of time on Yahoo News, so that’s really saying something! Somehow this penis managed to look like a decapitated ghost wearing a jean jacket; everyone was very impressed. Within a few minutes several “Yahoos,” as the kids call them, had downloaded, modified and reposted the picture, to better highlight its considerable charms, and unexpected topography. My research, everybody! And although not exactly an example of the kind of crowdsourcing Brabham describes, is indicative of behaviors the crowdsource model encourages. Not in terms of content (unless that’s the sort of thing you’re into, in which case there’s a crowd for that), but in terms of active, enthusiastic, and most interestingly, (ostensibly) uncompensated participation. The silly Yahoos playing Photoshop doctor didn’t have anything to gain from tweaking the picture, except maybe enjoyment, which as a behavioral incentive is vastly underrated and certainly throws a wrench in the whole labor-as-exploitation model. They wanted to; it was fun; so they did, regardless of what they “got” for investing their time and resources. This is the best kind of fun there is, really! AND YOU CAN’T PUT A PRICE TAG ON THAT, except when you can, which is precisely why companies are so stoked about crowdsourcing.