The author considers examples such as Wikipedia , MySpace , and other social media in his analysis. According to Shirky, the book is about "what happens when people are given the tools to do things together, without needing traditional organizational structures". In the book, Shirky recounts how social tools, such as blogging software like WordPress and Twitter , file sharing platforms like Flickr , and online collaboration platforms like Wikipedia, support group conversation and group action in a way that could previously only be achieved through institutions. Shirky argues that with the advent of online social tools, groups can form without previous restrictions of time and cost, in the same way the printing press increased individual expression, and the telephone increased communications between individuals. Shirky observes that:. Call this the institutional dilemma --because an institution expends resources to manage resources, there is a gap between what those institutions are capable of in theory and in practice, and the larger the institution, the greater those costs.
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In "Here Comes Everbody, the author writes about the current social revolution where groups of people are coming together to share with one another, work together or take some kind of public action. The wirter gives his anaysis on what the social impact will be.
Get A Copy. Hardcover , pages. More Details Original Title. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Here Comes Everybody , please sign up. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I love the title of this book - Here Comes Everybody - and that is exactly what is celebrated here.
Shirky discusses the way the internet has made coming together and communicating infinitely easier for people, and the ways in which the structure of certain groups at places like flickr or Meetup facilitate this getting together. He also talks about internet groups that have had startling effects in the real world He also discusses the intimacy found in groups on the internet, which explains why so much of the conversation on Facebook or Twitter appears to be so facile.
These aren't people tweeting messages of importance to the world, but rather people tweeting to five or so close friends - friends who are happy to see pix of their new haircut, or to read about what they had for lunch. These snips are not meant for the cold outsider's eye, but for the close coterie of friends that most people have, within the giant outer wrapper that is Facebook or whatever. He also discusses celebrity - be it the celebrity of a well known film star or the celebrity of a famous blogger.
In these instances two way communication is obviously severely restricted, and the role of friend found in intimate groups morphs into follower. There is massive disparity between those on the internet whose work is popular verus not so popular. Basically there are very few people whose output is prolific, or who are extemely popular. There is also a lot of fascinating discussion about Wikipedia - about how its ethos has encouraged good practice, about the rules in place to prevent vandalism, and about the ways in which different people contribute towards it.
Did you know that they 'lock' contentious topics until people's temper tantrums have quietened down? Whilst the likelihood of these pages being vandalised is high only Wikipedia members are allowed to edit them. Another thing I found fascinating is that a lot of its pages start out as 'stubs'. This means that someone will just put down a sentence or two - merely to indicate that the topic needs covering.
In time, more and more detailed information will be added to the topic. One example is 'asphalt'; the original description laid down for this was "Asphalt is a material used for road coverings". One hundred and twenty-nine people went on to edit this topic - and the description for asphalt now has the level of detail we associate with Wikipedia entries.
The book also celebrates other generators of open source information available on the internet. All the hundreds of people working on things like Linux programmes, or contributing to Genbank a public database of genetic sequences , or contributing to one of the myriad other organisations giving out their knowledge and expertise for free.
I am personally always blown over by the generosity of people on the internet, and the amazing access to information that is there for the asking, and thoroughly enjoyed these parts of the book. Another aspect of modern communication that was explored was the collapse between amateur and professional in several areas of life.
The reproduction of music, journalism and photography, have all been deeply affected by the rise of the internet and technology which enables all of us to cheaply and easily do these things.
The author doesn't say that these boundaries have disappeared completely, but the perimeters have changed. All in all I found this an interesting read. A good book for anyone who uses the internet - and as the title suggests - don't we all.
View all 8 comments. Jun 09, Ken rated it it was amazing. Why did you log in to GoodReads today? What is behind the explosion of Internet-based social networking in all its forms, from e-mail, to listservs, to Facebook, Flickr and Twitter? And more important: what does this new wave of truly participatory media bode for the future?
Clay Shirky takes on these big questions in Here Comes Everybody, and the result is an engaging, eye-opening book that draws upon social change theory, economics, and psychology. Shirky contends that the Internet, cell phones Why did you log in to GoodReads today? Shirky contends that the Internet, cell phones and other two-way communications technologies have lowered the barriers to group formation, such that people are organizing to great effect in ways that would have been impossible just a few years ago.
This is taking place in all sorts of ways: social groups, political action groups, photo sharing, news and information sharing, lifestyle support groups, the list goes on and on.
Shirky believes that the power of these new tools at our disposal will be harnessed collectively in a positive direction. He acknowledges that many individuals seek to disrupt cooperative efforts look at spammers, or "trolls" on mailing lists, for instance. Tools that are overrun by those seeking to disrupt them, though, were flawed in some way, and will fall away in favor of tools such as Wikipedia that correct for such vandalism.
Shirky believes that such efforts are doomed to failure: due to the nature of the technology itself, people will find a way around those attempted impositions.
So far, world events bear out his perspective. Shirky doesn't deal much with inequities in access to these communications tools. But that may be peripheral to his point: after all, not everyone had access to a printing press, yet its relatively widespread availability led to great change all over the world.
And anyway, Shirky isn't crazy enough to say that the new ease of organizing will eradicate inequality throughout the world. Here Comes Everybody is an important counterpoint to those who think that social networking is just a popularity contest for kids, or who bemoan the "narcissism" of people who put their information into MySpace.
There's a whole lot more going on there, and people of all generations are beginning to figure that out. If you're someone who wonders what those kids are up to these days, and you've heard of facebook but don't know what it does, and someone mentioned twitter to you once, but that pretty much escapes you - this is the book for you.
Needles to say, it was not the book for me. The internet, runs Shirky's argument, allows users to cut out the If you're someone who wonders what those kids are up to these days, and you've heard of facebook but don't know what it does, and someone mentioned twitter to you once, but that pretty much escapes you - this is the book for you.
The internet, runs Shirky's argument, allows users to cut out the middle man - they write their own news stories; they offer their own editorials; they organize their own events; they act in concert to focus on issues of social justice, and in short, the whole world's experiencing a revolution.
Beyond the first chapter, there's no mention of the 'whole world' in this book, or the vast numbers of people who live without, say, electricity, much less an iPhone. New technologies and social media sites may be changing the globe, but that change is top down, from wealthy countries to poor countries; from certain classes within countries, and there's a set of power relations being appropriated and expanded there that Skirky's book doesn't address.
Power may - may! It's a serious lack in the book that this doesn't come up. Aug 26, Jamie rated it it was amazing Shelves: adult , just-for-fun. This should be required reading for all librarians, if for nothing else than Chapter 3, in which he mentions how the people inside the institutions have the hardest time seeing how the institution is becoming obsolete.
AND Chapter 5 in which he explains how Wikipedia works. I also loved the later chapters on the importance of failures, and how institutions often have a hard time letting things go because they've already paid for them. This "failure"concept first occurred to me This should be required reading for all librarians, if for nothing else than Chapter 3, in which he mentions how the people inside the institutions have the hardest time seeing how the institution is becoming obsolete.
This "failure"concept first occurred to me in about, oh or so, when I went to the Newport Music Hall in Columbus to see Nazareth. He uses this analogy only talking about people sitting through bad movies for the same reasons people don't pull the plug on projects that obviously aren't working. Not to mention he answers many of the unenlightened critics of blogs, Twitter, and Facebook in beautiful, easy to read language.
Even if you're in his "choir" I challenge you not to think while reading this very thought provoking book. After reading Morozov, I just can't take this seriously. Shirky sounds super enthusiastic about group forming, power of groups, yeey..
First anecdote with the lost phone makes a great point and then the book goes downhill. Shirky is cyber-utopianism galore. I can't May 03, Josh Braun rated it really liked it Shelves: digital-age , nonfiction. Reprinted from my website : Clay Shirky 's new book, Here Comes Everybody is at once highly readable and a massive undertaking.
Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations
First the good news. It won't be long before borderline illiterate half-wit blowhards like me, with our fat salaries, expense-account lifestyles and stranglehold on the means of expression, become obsolete. Wikipedia, Second Life, Craigslist, MySpace, Bebo, Facebook, Flickr point the way to the lovely future where sharing caring groups of amateurs can connect in ways that will be experientially satisfying, community-boosting and, fingers crossed, democratically revivifying. I and 35, other paid journalists in the UK plus lots more worldwide face the knacker's yard. So argues new media and social networking theorist Clay Shirky in his terrifically clever, though to my mind harrowing, book. He draws a parallel with scribes who laboriously handcopied the wisdom of the ages from fragile and decaying manuscripts. For generations they were indispensable in refreshing cultural memory, then in the midth century Gutenberg's invention of movable type not only made their skills obsolete, but facilitated the Protestant Reformation.
An extraordinary exploration of how technology can empower social and political organizers For the first time in history, the tools for cooperating on a global scale are not solely in the hands of governments or institutions. The spread of the internet and mobile phones are changing how people come together and get things done—and sparking a revolution that, as Clay Shirky shows, is changing what we do, how we do it, and even who we are. Here, we encounter a whoman who loses her phone and recruits an army of volunteers to get it back from the person who stole it. A dissatisfied airline passenger who spawns a national movement by taking her case to the web. And a handful of kids in Belarus who create a political protest that the state is powerless to stop. A revolution in social organization has commenced, and Clay Shirky is its brilliant chronicler.
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