A Little Less Conversation

from the taking-on-the-social-software-elite dept

The whole social software craze is already getting quite a lot of backlash. This article from the BBC reiterates points that many social software critics have, which is that the people working on social software think they’ve discovered something new, when it’s really just the latest version of work that’s been going on for ages. Worse, those designing and promoting social software are accused of ignoring all the lessons people learned before them about human-computer interaction and how computers really play into social interaction. I tend to agree that many people, when they start working on hyped trends, often ignore very important work that’s been done before – but that doesn’t mean the new work isn’t useful as well. Both sides seem to be taking an antagonistic viewpoint on this debate, which is becoming more and more a debate over the semantics of social software, rather than looking at how the software is actually being used. In the end, people will keep using what works, and won’t worry whether it’s officially “social software” or some other term.

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