[By Nic Lindh on Tuesday, 16 September 2008]
Clay Shirky’s book Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations demonstrates why he’s one of the preeminent thinkers in the field of social (and societal) impact of digital communications tools. The book is easy to read, clear, and offers sterling examples of the changes Shirky discusses.
The basic idea is that the ease digital tools like email, wikis, and social Web sites bring to creating and organizing groups, be they ephemeral or long-lasting, changes the equation of how much organizational overhead is necessary for a group to spring into existence, and for that group to accomplish its goals.
Here Comes Everybody is refreshing in that it doesn’t devolve into wild-and-wooly Wired-style techno-prognostication—Shirky is talking about what is happening right now, and what it means.
If you’re alive in 2008, you should read Here Comes Everybody. It’s that important a book.