Monday, 7 May 2007

Spare Cycles and cyber-Citizenship

Chris Anderson points out that people seem to have an awful lot of time on their hands, or "spare cycles" to write blogs, author open-source and free software, write and edit articles for Wikipedia, etc.

In the 21st century it looks like this kind of volunteer-ism is the new Citizenship.

Naturally the amount of spare cycles available to the individual must vary. Amusingly, a commenter accuses Anderson of not having kids, but he replies that he has -- gulp! -- four young children!

My comment is that these are engaging, creative, altruistic efforts to which people are donating their spare cycles, and such endeavours give you a warm inner glow and beget more energy. Hence they benefit both the individual and society.

And -- up to a point -- they benefit employers too because the energy induced in the individual by this kind of engagement washes into the rest of the employee's day.

Of course the challenge for the deeper-thinking boss is how to get an even-higher level of interest and engagement in the official work than can be found in cyber-Citizenship. On the other side of the fence are the social-website entrepreneurs who are after those spare cycles for their own enterprises.

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