Cognitive Surplus, Part II

A few weeks ago, we discussed the Clay Shirky’s concept of cognitive surplus.

Here’s the original video of that discussion:

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Discussions found on the web:
  1. Phil commented on May 11

    wow…that was really good!! The internet invites people to engage and become critical thinkers instead of dumbed down victims of spin and propeganda….it’s a pity the internet didn’t come a little earlier. Oh well there’s still time to save ourselves from ourselves….I think? Now I’m going to have a G&T.

  2. Winston Munn commented on May 11

    By my back-of-the-envelope computations, there is now enough cognitive surplus available from American Idol, Survivor, and Dancing With the Stars to at least consider the implications of the national debt (Wow, dude, that’s a lot.), although it takes about 27 hours of this type surplus storage to equate to 1 hour of Nova.

    Does it say something about our culture when Dancing With the Stars is but Nova is not considered a “reality show”.

    Perhaps we’d have more of a future if Nova had better show titles: Quantum Quarrels and Laser Lap Dancing come to mind.

  3. JHunt commented on May 11

    unrelated to this, but interesting story abou a guy who bought 9 (NINE) houses in SoCal. And is now out all nine.

    P.S. I think that what this guy says about Cognitive Surplus is amazing and all too true.

  4. Mathias Rust commented on May 12

    If I was a cynical billionare, perhaps I might see cognitive surplus as purely wasted productivity. Wasted watching television, that is, while it should be spent more productively as in with family, or educating oneself. So, this mindset might say to itself – why not cut the fat and place cost pressure on the middle class, when they don’t appreciate what they have anyway? It’s just wasted productivity…

    Is this a realistic mindset? Might it explain Rupert Murdoch’s sensibilities?

  5. cjc commented on May 12

    I love things like this. Having been through a lot of schooling, I have realized that the first step in new subjects is the vocabulary. You must first learn the new words to go with the the new concepts. You cannot discuss the new concepts or the aspects of them, (convective heat transfer, debits/credits, strict scrutiny) until you have named them.

    What I get out of this is not just the joy of a new idea, but the tool of new words. Cognitive surplus, and a screen without a mouse. so, thanks, basically.

    Another comment about the success of Idol and DWTStars is — Can it be that the voting is the participation that let’s people be involved? Could it really be that the option to participate//to vote– is ‘the mouse’???

    If true, maybe old media (TV) does get it at least a little bit and we will see more participation in TV shows. Or, maybe just more seasons of the same shows….

    OT-hopefully more people will vote in elections than on the AmerIdol finale. A populace that is more accustomed to participating with their TV may be more inclined to participate in the democracy. If only we could vote by phone…

  6. Booyaaaa commented on May 12

    Clay Shirky and Tom Hanks- separated at birth? Hmmm. maybe I should use some cognitive surplus and develop this idea more…

    Nah. More Gilligan’s Island for me.

  7. Longtime reader commented on May 12

    Very provocative. It’s only a matter of time before we throw away wornout corporate hierarchies or the charade of matrixed management. Here comes “screen-with-a-mouse” decision making. Now that’s engagement.

  8. BustaMove commented on May 12

    Thanks Barry – Very interesting stuff. Funny how the old guard never sees it coming.

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