Final Review

Final Review - Communities and Social Networks Why work in...

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Communities and Social Networks o Why work in groups? (Shirky and Josh’s lecture) Transaction cost-cost of reaching in agreement between group members. It can be time, attention, or money. Costs of decisions in groups of different sizes-because of the birthday paradox as the group size increases the transaction costs increase as well. In order to manage the large costs, large groups traditionally fashion themselves in orgnizations. By creating group hierarchies they reduce transaction costs. The organization pays subordinates to secure their agreements-therefore, people give up their equal status and involvement in decisions for a paycheck. This distorts communication and can also be expensive The price of getting people to agree scales faster than the number of people in a group at some number of people the price of organizing of a group outweighs the benefits of organizing the group. “Coaseian ceiling” and “Coaseian floor” “Coaseian ceiling-” point at which transaction costs outweigh benefits “Coaseian floor-“ when the price of organizing the group exceeds the interest in forming the group Online groups-have none of the aforementioned transaction costs Think of facebook groups-you can create and find groups dedicated to almost anything and join at no cost Think of Flickr-puts everyone’s pictures together without transaction costs and without any labor Stages of group development-Shirky refers to online groups as a ladder with each stage being the next rung of the ladder Sharing & Shared awareness-lowest rung of the ladder and involves nothing other than shared awareness-sites like google or flickr- aggregates people’s contributions Conversation-second rung on the ladder, we are not only aware of others with similar interests but now we want to talk to them-at this point we are no longer acting on strictly individual terms Collaborative Production-this involves conversation, which in turn requires shared awareness, but it’s more involved-it is what happens when we get together with people online to produce a common product like Wikipedia Collective Action & Shared Responsibility-group members are not only working together to create a product but members have a personal stake in the product’s success and the productivity of the other members of the group Free Rider problems-when someone takes advantage of something communal by using more of the communal resources than they are supposed to so everyone else gets less so that person is benefitting from the communal resources at the expenses of everyone else. Ex: sheep grazing and the commons Levels of group involvement and investment To Privatize Communal Resources-each person is given a piece and that protect that wisely because it is now in their own self-interest
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To Tax-mandate everyone’s contribution to the commons Can true community exist online? Shirky says that what defines a community is the notion of investment
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This note was uploaded on 02/04/2009 for the course COMM 245 taught by Professor Birnholtz during the Fall '08 term at Cornell.

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Final Review - Communities and Social Networks Why work in...

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