Name: Jon Udell
Member since: 2000-04-02 18:17:19
Last Login: N/A
I'm always interested in groupware experiments; this appears to be a fascinating one.
Regarding Advogato's trust system, I found this comment on the article entitled Social experiment on slashdot moderation to be particularly interesting:
" Advogato hasn't been properly tested yet, posted 24 Jan 2000 by kwayne
Advogato has yet to endure the test of the unwashed masses that slashdot has to put up with.
Wait until Advogato gets a few more 'killer' stories that attract a lot of attention to the site... Although it's user base is growing fast, it's currently got a niche market that only attracts a particular type of quality audience.
I personally hope advogato never gets so popular that it attracts the average slashdot poster."
(Nit: It would have been nice to have been able to refer directly to that comment with an URL.)
For what it's worth, I've been running a set of "boutique" newsgroups for a number of years, with pretty good signal-to-noise ratio and a lot of interesting, eclectic discussion. I've wondered often why it works as well as it does. I think there are really two main reasons:
Advogato currently has both these properties, and I think that's why it works so well. Whether it can -- or should -- scale to slashdot proportions is a crucial question.
Is the answer to "the slashdot problem" to implement a certification system like the one here, or, instead, to partition a community that's grown too large into several smaller ones? I don't think anybody knows for sure, but I suspect the latter will prove to be the best strategy. Studies of group dynamics have shown that several hundred people is a fairly hard upper limit for useful collaboration. I read recently about a company that split itself into several divisions -- located physically within a stone's throw of one another -- in order to maintain the right kind of community dynamics within each division.
It may be that trust is something which more or less takes care of itself in a right-sized community. Where "web-of-trust" automation may be most beneficial, perhaps, is to support the process of establishing right-sized communities, and appropriate connections among them.
judell certified others as follows:
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