The inherent intelligence of swarms has inspired many social and political philosophers, in that the collective movements of an aggregate often derive from independent decision making on the part of a single individual. A common example is how the unaided decision of a person in a crowd to start clapping will often encourage others to follow suit, culminating in widespread applause. Such knowledge, an individualist advocate might argue, should encourage individual decision making (however mundane) as an effective tool in bringing about widespread social change.
CROWDSOURCING: Formed by gathering or collecting; gathered into a mass, sum, or body; congregated or aggregated; as, the collective body of a nation.
“A network is non hierarchical. It is a web of connections among equals. What holds it together is not force, obligation, material incentive, or social contract, but rather shared values and the understanding that some tasks can be accomplished together that could never be accomplished separately.” [Dr Dana Meadows. Beyond the Limits (MIT)]
Crowdsourcing is a neologistic portmanteau of “crowd” and “outsourcing,” first coined by Jeff Howe in a June 2006 Wired magazine article “The Rise of Crowdsourcing“. Howe explains that because technological advances have allowed for cheap consumer electronics, the gap between professionals and amateurs has been diminished. Companies are then able to take advantage of the talent of the public, and Howe states that “It’s not outsourcing; it’s crowdsourcing.”
The Internet’s inherent potential to weave the mass of humanity into a thriving, infinitely powerful organism is the reason the electronic net has become the prime tool for advancing the efforts of crowdsourcers.
The many can work together to outperform the few in endless variety of ways, from computing and marketing, through design and voting to coding and creation. The premise of crowdsourcing is growing exponentially, so I won’t go into all of it here. If you’d like a bit of an overview as to it’s applicability, check out the list of projects at Wikipedia.
‘The Age of Stupid‘ is perhaps the most publicized and successful crowdfunding film case to-date, having raised $1.2 million via crowdfunding, it also used crowdsourcing to distribute and exhibit the film around the world.
The guys at RocketHub did an impressive job explaining the nuts and bolts of crowfunding via the net.
8 of the current (updated Sept. 2016) crowdfunding platforms around the world, in no particular order:
Some of these take on projects in the country they’re based in, so check all the details beforehand.
Now go, change the world ツ
FOR THE CURIOUS:
Why the Power of the Crowd is Driving the Future of Business, Jeff Howe on crowdsourcing (where it all started)