Sunday, May 11, 2014

Interactive Media Environment to Drive Next-Generation Collaboration

A key feature of the contemporary media environment is interactivity. From clicking big data into information visualizations to personal digital assistants to MMORPGs to crowd-produced digital art to on-demand video content integrated with real-time social networking, interactivity is the underlying expectation of any contemporary media experience.

So far, the interactive media environment and its deployments have been realized mostly in the areas of entertainment and information, and at the level of the individual. While it can be argued that ‘interactivity as a feature’ is an obvious progression in the evolution of technology, something much more profound is happening. At a higher level, the interactive media environment is facilitating the fuller development of the individual, and also of groups.

As Clay Shirky heralded, online interactions are progressing from social networking to content sharing to action-taking. The expectation of interactivity and sociality as a feature of web properties means that an interesting next level of human collaboration can be envisioned. Some of the examples of this include eLabor marketplaces, software communities like Wikipedia and Linux, and problem-solving groups like Foldit and EteRNA.

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