Summary of Here Comes Everybody

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Rating

9 Overall

10 Applicability

9 Innovation

9 Style


Recommendation

Author Clay Shirky tackles a daunting task: He sets out to explain how new electronic media are transforming society. In itself, that sounds common enough, but Shirky’s focus and specificity raise his book to a level of much greater value and utility than its peers. He examines the social nature of humans, and analyzes how tools ranging from email to text messages change the way people organize into groups. His style is easy, and he tells interesting and highly convincing stories to illustrate the changes he observes. The result is a book that anyone dealing with group organization and communication should read. getAbstract recommends this innovative work to marketers, social critics and entrepreneurs who hope to tap into or develop new social structures.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How new electronic media are changing society by enabling new forms of community and
  • How to use them to spread your message.
 

About the Author

Clay Shirky writes and consults on the cultural implications of the Internet, and serves on the faculty of the Interactive Telecommunications Program at New York University.

 

Summary

Social Beings in a Brave New World

The introduction of new social media tools and electronic communication methods feeds one of mankind’s defining traits: “Human beings are social creatures – not occasionally or by accident but always.” People live in groups. All foundational human activities depend on group interaction. Humans are so social that they’ve developed an almost endless string of terms to describe their relationships, so social that the punishment of “solitary confinement” is considered more harsh and profound than being in a prison community, where the only members of society are criminals. Humans are so good at acting in groups and so accustomed to doing so, that people often take their groups for granted and don’t mention them. You recall Michelangelo and Edison, but what about the people who carried the paint up the ladders in the Sistine Chapel and dusted the light bulbs in Edison’s lab.


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    null 8 years ago
    The reviews of such books are only shallow exercises in futility. Both authors and reviewers lack the intellectual equipment to analyze their subject matter for implications or covert design. Such low-brow comic book approaches to the reality of literature is a glowing, radioactive sign of elemental intellectual decay. When I read this drivel, seeking useful information, its as if I am sifting through the ashes of a morons distorted view of pseudo reality.