The ignorance of crowds

This post by Mitch Ratcliffe illustrates nicely one of the major drawbacks of the new collaborative society. That being a few outlierers can ruin the whole thing for everyone.

Now this isn’t new, those of you who’ve lived past 20 will recognise that this is a re-occurring theme in human history. Most of the worlds population agrees that being nice to each other and not killing everyone in sight is a good idea. Last century we had more than our fair share of outliers who didn’t agree. Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, Milosevic to name a few.

Most of the worlds population agrees SPAM is a pain in the arse, but according to Sophos (sorry lost the source) about 80% of the worlds SPAM comes from 10 known (that’s the bit that gets me) individuals.

In a web 2.0 free speech is part of the gig, collaboration the foundation. Having said that though, the tide of humanity can be turned and collective wisdom can be become its antonym, ignorance.

I really like Mitch’s summary piece, right up the bit about mores and morals


“the Blogosphere is showing its greatest weakness after the fact, by spreading misinformation and fear rather than solid information. Now is precisely the time for a blog culture to coalesce around a discussion of mores and morals”

I think its time to coalesce for sure, but not around mores and morals.

I think its time for the wisdom within the group to outshine the ignorance. Take control (which is really a key tenant of web 2.0) Just don’t stand for it, call it out when ever you see it in action. 

We understand the consequences when we don’t   

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