3/24/12 7:23 AM
Howard Rheingold: Knowing How to Collaborate Is Essential.to.pbs.org/GYOUih
Rheingold: Attention is the fundamental instrument we use for learning, thinking, communicating, deciding, yet neither parents nor schools spend any time helping young people learn how to manage information streams and control the ways they deploy their attention.
The political public sphere, citizen science, crowdsourcing and crowdfunding, open-source production, emergent collective response to disaster, the blogosphere -- many capabilities and institutions that didn't exist a few years ago are now wielding computational, economic, political and cultural power, not because of top-down planning by big government or big corporations but by the active participation of billions of people.
Knowing the importance of participation and how to participate has suddenly become not only an individual survival skill but a key to large-scale social change.
Knowing how to participate is just the first step. Knowing how to collaborate has become essential to individuals who want to succeed in the 21st century and to the health of the culture that is emerging.
Collective intelligence, virtual communities, smart mobs, crowdsourcing, social production, peer learning are distinctly different forms of collaboration that have sprung up now that every desktop and every pocket is a potential printing press, broadcasting station, marketplace, community forum, political organizing force.