Tim Oâ€™Reilly, creator of the Web 2.0 meme, says that organizations have been slow to understand how â€œnetwork effectsâ€ can benefit their business if applied internally as well as externally.
Just watching/listening to this video podcast (link) in the first few 3-4 minutes of a 15 minute interview, and O’Reilly says something key for us as a church:
Enterprises have these huge databases, but haven’t figured out how to make them better by user participation. …….if you are able to harness user participation, you start to get into that self-reinforcing realm of network effects
Excellent. The “self-reinforcing realm” that keeps people coming back, not necessarily for the information itself, as compelling as that may be, but for the conversation and discovery of the endless “connected” conversations that are building up around a particular gathering. This sociology of online community is a crucial context for research by the church, because this is where we find our way in to what drives people, what inspires people, and the stories that they share amongst themselves as they seek a sense of support amongst those who are frequenting these spaces, for whatever reason.