Jaron Lanier on Internet Mobs

I have never believed in the “wisdom of the crowd.”
Now I feel better because Lanier apparently feels the same way:
“All too many entrepreneurs seem to think that if you reduce the human element, the scheme will become more efficient. Instead of asking people to create videos or avatars, which require creativity and commitment, just watch their clicks, have them take surveys, have them tweak collective works, add anonymous, unconsidered remarks, etc. This trend is lousy, in my opinion, because it encourages people to lose themsleves into groupthink.”
I also like his take on Web 2.0:
“The Web 2.0 notion is that an entrepreneur comes up with some scheme that attracts huge numbers of people to participate in an activity online β€” like the video sharing on YouTube, for instance. Then you can “monetize” at an astronomical level by offering a way to bring ads or online purchasing to people in your gigantic crowd of participants. What is amazing about this idea is that the people are the value β€” and they also pay for the value they provide instead of being paid for it. For instance, when you buy something that is advertized, part of the price goes to the ads β€” but in the new online world, you yourself were the bait for the ad you saw. The whole cycle is remarkably efficient and concentrates giant fortunes faster than any other business scheme in history.”
Ouch.

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