It was a real treat to have Howard Rheingold make his appearance, and, of course, I was tickled that he started with my question about “How come with all our web-facilitated transparency into politicians and our smart-mob-organizing technology, we have fewer protests in the US than 40 years ago?” Howard didn’t actually answer the question, and, in general, his answers lofted at the altitude of the Big Picture. I’m sure some students were hoping that he’d get more specific than “Follow your bliss” in his answer to Christy’s request for vocational guidance. I personally liked that his answers had the perspective of someone, who, like me, was already in mid-life when this Internet thing came along.
Watching the Benkler video, having the full group discussion and then doing the small group exercise of trying to come up with viable ideas for social production projects made me think that perhaps I was too easy on Benkler in my review of TWoN. My point that the social production model seems to have to sharp limitations to its application (e.g., forget narrative art) was driven home when we strained to brainstorm a real project or two. I don’t recall any that were proposed that lit up the scoreboard or that wouldn’t seem to require a full-time administrator. As with TLT, I think it remains to be seen whether the shining examples the authors site as the basis for their predictions are forerunners or anomalies.
I’ve not included tags with this post because I don’t really want it turning up in other people’s searches or showing up on their Google alerts.