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20 July, 2006

Creativity for all

The '1% rule', as the Guardian explains, is the emerging pattern that

if you get a group of 100 people online then one will create content, 10 will 'interact' with it (commenting or offering improvements) and the other 89 will just view it.

I wouldn't have ascribed numbers, but now it's been mentioned, I suppose I have been aware of the trend, which inspires a thought: what does this mean for Web 2.0?
Beyond the hype, is it likely to remain the preserve of the 'engaged elite'? The media breathlessly report that n million people have signed-up to Flickr, etc., but if 89% are only there to passively view the output of the 1%, raw membership statistics clearly don't equate to interaction and content generation.

I'm not an especial fan of user-led, interactive web development anyway, and prefer the prior model of provider-led publication by individuals to readers. However, this entry isn't meant to subtextually gloat that Web 2.0 is 'doomed to fail' – I'm genuinely curious how the aspirations of an active minority will extend to a passive majority.
I wouldn't be surprised if, ultimately, very little changes and few people experience more than 'Web 1.5': standard Web 1.0 publishing with a degree of feedback, rather than routine interactivity.

Any thoughts? Can you be bothered to express them?

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