Class notes: Social media definitions

Posted: January 18, 2011 in Class notes
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Here is a quick list of the key ideas we covered in class today, followed by some tips and reminders for you:

  1. O’Reilly’s 7 defining principles of Web 2.0
  2. Some important concepts to remember from the O’Reilly reading: long tail, perpetual beta, software as service, cloud computing, architecture of participation.
  3. McAfee’s definitions of Enterprise 2.0: SLATES and ESSP
  4. Important distinction from McAfee reading: communication channels vs. communication platforms.
  5. boyd & Ellison’s 3 defining criteria for social network sites (remember also point about network vs networking)

We ended class with the following questions, which I invite you to address in a blog post:

  • Which definition makes more sense to you, and why?
  • What relationships do you see among the 3 definitions? Are they complementary, contradictory? Can you integrate all 3 definitions in one framework? – Or create your own definition?
  • What do you take away from all these efforts to define Web 2.0  and social media? Why do you think most authors define them by listing characteristics rather than stating what they are?

I also gave you another idea/homework for a blog post. Take a few minutes to look over the list of social media sites submitted by students (if you haven’t pasted yours in this list, please do so NOW).

Then, think about how you would categorize them and write a blog post about it. Create a classification scheme (taxonomy) and briefly explain each category. You don’t actually have to go through the trouble of populating the categories, just define them. For example, you could decide most sites fit into one of three major categories: red, white, or blue. Briefly explain what you mean by the red category, and give a couple of examples of sites that would fit in that category. Then, move on to the white category and repeat. And so on.


  • Set up your Twitter account and blog, connect with me, so I can connect you to the rest of the class – NOW
  • Always do the class readings. Now, you wouldn’t want your surgeon or aircraft engineer to be the type who didn’t do readings in college, would you? Do know that teachers do know when you didn’t do the readings, even if they don’t throw a fit.

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