Thursday, February 18, 2010

Participating Online

Campus buildings, a patch of blue sky, and snow everywhere (still)

For a while I've been wondering what motivates people to give away the kitchen sink online. Bragging rights? Loneliness? Boredom?

But then I caught myself contributing a couple of times recently, and so here's one perspective:

Personally, I am highly motivated to participate online -- in a discussion, Facebook conversation, a wiki, whatever -- when I notice a blatant error. I experience a very strong urge to correct the error. Even anonymously. In fact, I prefer when I can do it anonymously. Now I'm wondering whether I'm unique, if this is a symptom of some control disorder, or if this the same thing that motivates a lot of people. Is this how wikipedia came to be?

That is all, for now. It's been a long week.

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