The Crowdfunding Act has passed a vote in the US Senate. It allows people funding companies directly to finally become owners, as compared to models such as KickStarter that are “donation”-based – you can get rewards, but not ownership. While we’re definitely seeing more of a start-up culture in Brazil, it is still way too hard to do anything new here
Two articles, taken together, are great reading material and food for thought. The first one is about rethinking innovation and new product development. The second article, even larger, is about production processes that are becoming – paradoxically perhaps – more efficient and more flexible.
Don Taspcott, author of Wikinomics, was interviewed by Brazilian magazine Veja. We liked Wikinomics in “broad” terms: we’re firm believers in the power of crowdsourcing done right, mass collaboration made easier via social media etc.. The problem is summarized in the old saying: “To the man who only has a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.” Mr. Taspcott falls into that trap, which is avoidable.
We often find relevant articles related to subjects we’ve already discussed at Buysiders.com, and we post them as updates while linking to the original post(s). While each update should be interesting on its own, the idea is to read the whole “thread”, especially as time goes by and we develop a sense of history. In IP’s case, our Intranet dates back to 2003 and back then we made an effort to find older articles about companies and sectors we were studying. Being able to tap into this rich history is quite valuable and we hope to build the same wealth of links at Buysiders.com. In today’s piece we’re posting two updates about different subjects: crowdsourcing and e-publishing/ the “Web is dead” debate.
Consider this: you’ve built a diverse, intelligent, hard-working team that successfully leverages individual abilities and skill sets into a higher collective intelligence. Then the same group of people have lunch in the nearby shopping mall and do dumb things (such as spending more on a “premium” brand) because they’re in a group… Gotta love us humans. Inside we highlight two articles on the good and bad of group “intelligence”.
We love it when readers send us great material, and when they’re 16 years old we’re even more impressed. This video is a very well-crafted summary of and ad for Steven Johnson’s new book (same name as our post). There’s also a TED talk that expands somewhat and exemplifies. In the TED video Mr. Johnson gets a bit more “pro-crowdsourcing”, in the sense that there’s an obvious trade-off between intellectual property protection vs. opening up to collaborative business models. As we’ve posted here almost a year ago, there are limits to crowdsourcing that should be minded before launching any type of “open” initiative.
We’ve discussed crowdsourcing and Netflix more than once. That it works for some uses better than for others is pretty clear… But Netflix has apparently messed up the database used in the original contest and that allowed some contestants to identify the actual people behind the movie choices, despite the promise of privacy. Needless to say, the FCC wasn’t too happy about it – and Netflix had to cancel its “Contest 2.0”, at least for now. Doesn’t mean that the tool doesn’t work, it just means that you have to be careful using it.
There’s one aspect that seems overlooked in the whole “multidisciplinary approach” cult: communication. If you don’t have the adequate communication policies/ environment, how does one reap the rewards from all this multidisciplinary goodness? How does a team interact in order to extract value from its members’ diverse interests and skill sets?