I just finished watching the video of Clay Shirky’s presentation “Gin and Cognitive Surplus” at the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco and I thought it was a great presentation from an excellent speaker in which Shirky discusses the difference between consumption and participation as it relates to popular media.
After I watched this video, I started to think about how its message related to our communities and the difference between consumption and participation as it relates to this environment.
Recently, I heard that the e-learning section of the SAP Communities was one of the most popular areas in terms of usage. For me, this is a sign that the main focus of the community is still focused on consumption rather than participation.
In his presentation, Shirky keeps mentioning the Wikipedia as an example of the potential of exploiting this cognitive surplus. I keep comparing the activity in the community wikis with other collaborative areas (for example, forums) and finding that the wiki usage is still lagging way behind. Of course, forums and blogs are a form of collaboration as well but I think the wiki takes this collaboration to a new level.
So turn off those TVs, use your cognitive surplus and collaborate with others (especially in this community).