Friday, 9 August 2013

How can Web 2.0 tools assist my personal productivity?

Before discussing how Web 2.0 tools assist my personal productivity, I want to define the term “Web 2.0”. Web 2.0, as defined by Wikipedia, “describes web sites that use technology beyond the static pages of earlier web sites”. This allows users to interact and collaborate with each other as creators of user-generated content in a virtual community, in contrast to regular websites where people are constrained to just retrieving information.

There are many ways people can communicate and collaborate in a digital environment. For example, a collection of blogs enables a blogger to share their thoughts and insights about several topics in life and also allows the community to contribute and add comments or suggestions regarding that particular topic. In other words, it offers new effective modes of collaboration and group people in an efficient way.

Wikis are one of the web application tools that allow people to add, modify, or delete content in  collaboration with others. Google Docs is an amazing web-based office suite which allows users to create and edit documents online while collaborating in real-time with other users. For more than 6 years, I was using Google Docs to share documents with my colleagues as  an effective and easy way to update content simultaneously, and more accurately between all of us. Later on, as a tutor in an IS department, I activated these tools, in addition to twitter and blogs, to allow students to discuss various issues related to the unit such as specific software problem or unclear topics as well as share their information with other students for their benefit too. I had an excellent experience because students enjoyed this digital environment since they benefited quickly and easily and without any need to impose a structure or rules to collaborate.
As concluded from The Social economy: Unlocking value and productivity through social technologies 2012report, by McKinsey Global Institute, Web 2.0 offers several benefits to  individuals themselves and within their organizations. It facilitates engaging with customers on social media and monitoring social media conversations to create customer insights and market intelligence. It enables sharing, publishing and consuming content within a group to increase workers skill level by communication and collaboration.
People also can crowd source things through technology to get help in solving problems. RocketHub is one such interesting online crowdfunding platform. Users from around the world including musicians, scientists, game developers, filmmakers and fashion designers post fundraising campaigns to RocketHub to raise funds and awareness for projects and endeavours. RocketHub enables Direct-to-Fan social media-based outreach and fundraising. When posting a campaign, users choose a campaign deadline, target funding-goal, and offer “perks” in exchange for contributions. Broadly, RocketHub shares similarities with platforms such as Kickstarter, Sellaband, and Pledgemusic.
And here is  an interesting video I would like to share about how a company can find the right talent from 1734 applicants, if job interviews are all the same.

It must be noted that Web 2.0 technologies, however, can effect productivity in a negative manner. It does consume time and might decrease productivity if  it is not used in the right way. Additionally, some cultural factors might interact with using these technologies. For instance, employee might not do their assigned jobs and spending time in blogging or commenting on others blogs which eventually effects their productivity.
Have you ever used one of the Web 2.0 tools to assist in your personal productivity? And how did it increase, or even decrease your productivity?


  1. Interesting post, I was not even aware of the existence of RocketHub, so thanks for pointing that out. You are quite right that Web 2.0 is only a tool that can be used either effectively or be misused in which case it would be a hindrance to productivity. In my case, I believe Web 2.0 tool have assisted my rather than the other way around. For example, I'm a long time Google Docs user, similar to you, and I find it quite useful.

  2. Thanks for your comment.
    And also there are many online websites that provide crowdsourcing in different topics. you might take a look at freelancer or odesk. you just specify the contest and the work that needed to be done and eventually you get what you need:)

  3. Thanks Maram for the informative post. Web 2.0 applications has changed everything in the life. It is a new approach to provide the services of the second generation on the Internet. It also depend on supporting the communication between Internet users, maximize the user's role in enriching the digital content on the Internet, and cooperation between the various of users on the Internet to build electronic communities. Yes I agree with you Google Docs is easy and perfect tool of collaborating. I have used Google Docs with the group work to share our knowledge and edit for each other, it also save our time because we do not need to meet each other face-to-face with Google Docs. I prefer to use Web 2.0 applications because thay are easier and cheaper than Web 1.0 applications. Is any neagtive impact of web 2.0 on your personal productivity?

  4. Thanks dana for your valuable comment.
    Every thing if misused will eventually have a negative impact. For example, if the company doesn't respond to the customers or received a negative feedback, it might be affected by this Web 2.0 tool