Wednesday, 18 July 2007

Crowdsourcing - what is the truth about authority?

Check out Micro Persuasion for an interesting debate on this topic. I am always minded of Critical Theorists Habermas et al on discussions such as this concerning the 'authority' of authorities and other writers such as Eric Fromm who urge us to be guarded against people who claim to have all the answers.

Steve Streuble's post is a fascinating discussion because this issue applies to any 'idea' that has reach. I'm particularly interested in the reach and influence of management ideas...stalwarts such as 'the marketing concept' or fads such as BPR. There's some interesting philosophical hints in the area of Critical Realism that has alot to do with the 'power' and dominance of the individual or managing group. I reckon some sort of qualitatitve 'veracity' benchmark might be interesting. This of course then ties in with 'consensus' theories of 'truth'. This bascially means that authority/ influence is actually 'agreed' by the audience and is not some independent 'thing' that can measured objectively. Not unlike DIGG / Reddit voting. The essential issue for me here is that maybe to measure 'it' you need to think in terms of subjective measures and not the technical/ analytic type measures that dominate much of the benchmarking process in this area.

One commenter on the blog raises the need for a blended approach (hard soft measures). I quite agree, how can anything as complex as a blog be summed up with 1 metric. I will be posting a review of the marketing metrics landscape soon...

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