"When thinking about the way people use virtual communities, I find the most extraordinary change is the move from socializing, communicating and looking for information towards coordinating. Teens organize appointments easier on a public blog than by using phone or other private communication means. The reach of the internet, its usability and the competency of its users have grown tremendously. On the other hand, privacy concerns have become rare."
Nothing illustrates these points better than myspace.com, the community that has drawn the attention of the media because of its growth to millions of millions of users. Alexandra Bröhm of Swiss weekly newspaper "Sonntagszeitung" interviewed me while doing research for an article about myspace.com.
MyTravelBooK: information and communication support for travelers
This project aims at implementing ideas from my research on virtual communities. The main goal is to enable shared knowledge creation, personal and cooperative trip planning in an open virtual community.
Whereas travel information used to be created by few professional guidebook authors, now a large community of traveler will distributedly contribute. Always updatable, provided by many people in a transparent and peer reviewed manner, it will create an universal and free information source as wikipedia did for encyclopaedic information.
MyTravelBooK combines several tools (Blog, Wiki, discussion forums) using a geographic structure as the main connection. Thus the disadvantages of the single tool are avoided. For details on my research, pleae see my publications.
Seminar Information Management: "Social Web", Summer 2007
Ackerman, Pipek,Wulf (Hrsg.): Sharing Expertise: Beyond Knowledge Management. This review to appear in I-COM.