Clay Shirky Highlights from Etech 2006 in San Diego

These are my five favorite quotes from Clay Shirky’s talk at eTech 2006.  These are small snippets from the O’Reilly Radar Post.

The problem that Slashdot faces is the tragedy of the commons. The aggregate attention of the users is the commons. Everyone has an incentive to see that maintained for Slashdot to thrive. Every poster has an incentive to defect, to get attention for them selves.

Treat readers and writers different. By making distinction, slashdot can figure out how to defend readers from writers.

Defensive Defaults. Social software is the land of unintended consequences. Who will guard the guardians? Once one group of users passes judgment on others, I have to defend against abuse.

1. Don’t make features 2. Make comments central 3. Make login optional

Social software is the experimental wing of political philosophy, a discipline that doesn’t realize it has an experimental wing. We are literally encoding the principles of freedom of speech and freedom of expression in our tools.

Clay is one bald serious talking dude.  He has influenced my thinking on spam (the point is it is PART of the system so do not be surprised!).  I encourage everyone interested in social software to read his article on Group as User: Flaming and the Design of Social Software.