For how long can a Web 2.0 application be popular?
The Centre for Journalism at Cardiff University is teaching us how to blog and micro blog, use wikis, social bookmarking, RSS feeds, and photo sharing.
At the moment, I’m ignorant about convergence, which isn’t conducive to being a good journalist.
I find the huge choice of new applications baffling and I want to keep up with the changes, but the Internet is developing so quickly that I don’t know how to judge what’s worthwhile.
Here’s an example:
The Decline of My Space
In 2006 and 2007, I checked my My Space page at least twice a day. Now I glance at it once a month because around June 2007, all my contacts packed their photos and comments into their cyber-net bags and ran off to Facebook.
So I followed them.
Although My Space was initially popular with social networkers, it’s doesn’t assume the same degree of privacy as Facebook.
Architecture of Participation
But My Space is far from rubbish. Although it was started as a social networking site, its users spotted a different potential: to promote music.
For example, Pete Lawrie was heard by Rob da Bank and Zane Lowe’s band Breaks Co-op on My Space. He went on to sign a publishing deal with Chrysalis and is about to record his debut album with Rollo Armstrong (Faithless, Dido) in January.
My Space developed into a platform for musicians to showcase their work to the entire world and in that sense was revolutionary.
Waste of Time?
It could be said that it’s a waste of time to learn how to use applications which could have millions of hits one month, but may be deserted the next.
But on the other hand, once I have the skills, I can use them to understand different, but similar applications.
And what’s more, if I can gain a wider understanding of why certain applications succeed or fail, I could discriminate between them and choose the one I need.
I’d like to be able to lead the way in online journalism, rather than trying to catch up with everyone else.