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26 APRIL 2014

Virality: Contagion Theory in the Age of Networks

Tony D. Sampson (2012). "Virality. Contagion Theory in the Age of Networks. University of Minnesota Press.

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TAGS

2013 • age of networks • Alexander Galloway • antivirus industry • Antonio Negri • assemblage theory • biological knowledge of contagion • biological meme • biological metaphor • Bruno Latour • category clutter • clash of cultures • communication theory • concerns over too much connectivity • contagion • contagion theory • contagious affects • contagious assemblagescontagious desire • contagious events • contagious phenomena • contagiousness of phantomscritical position • crowd behaviour • cultural studiesdiversity • document classification • Emile Durkheimempathy • Eugene Thacker • Gabriel TardeGilles Deleuze • global cultures • global financial crisis • hybrid states of constant flows • hybridity • imposing identities • imposing oppositions • imposing resemblancesinformation exchangeinformation flowinformation theoryintangibility • limiting analysis • mass culture • mass empathy • media archeology • media studies • media theorist • medical metaphor • Michael Hardt • microbe • microbial contagion • microsociology • mindless acceptance • mindless imitation • modernism • molecular • molecular epidemiology studiesmolecule • nature of being • network analysis • network culture • network cultures • network science • network society • network theory • networked informationnetworks • neurological metaphor • neurosciencenodes and connections • non-imitation • non-linear ontology • online social spaces • ontological worldview • over categorisation • overcategorise • physical social spaces • purity • regressive listener • reliance on representational thinkingrepresentational thinkingrepresentational thinking expressed in analogiesrepresentational thinking expressed in metaphors • resist contamination • resuscitating • revolutionary contagion • social and cultural domains • social behaviour of networking • social bodies • social media • social relationalities • socialisation • sociological event • sociological studies • sociology • sociology of networks • solidarity within crowds • somnambulist • spontaneous revolution • stoic behaviour • subject indexing • terrorismTheodor Adorno • Tony Sampson • viralviral love • viral networks • virality

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
22 APRIL 2012

Cooperation and collaboration: problem solving and problem finding

"The economists Richard Lester and Michael Piore have studied the firms that sought to create the switching technology, finding that cooperation and collaboration within certain companies allowed them to make headway on the switching technology problem, whereas internal competition at other corporations diminished engineers' efforts to improve the quality of the switches. Motorola, a success story, developed what it called a 'technology shelf,' created by a small group of engineers, on which were placed possible technical solutions that other teams might use in the future; rather than trying to solve the problem outright, it developed tools whose immediate value was not clear. Nokia grappled with the problem in another collaborative way, creating an open–ended conversation among its engineers in which salespeople and designers were often included. The boundaries among business units in Nokia were deliberately ambiguous, because more than technical information was needed to get a feeling for the problem; lateral thinking was required. Lester and Piore describe the process of communication this entailed as 'fluid, context–dependent, undetermined.'[20]

By contrast, companies like Ericsson proceeded with more seeming clarity and discipline, dividing the problem into its parts. The birth of the new switch was intended to occur through 'the exchange of information' among offices 'rather than the cultivation of an interpretative community.'[21] Rigidly organized, Ericsson fell away. It did eventually solve the switching technology problem, but with greater difficulty; different offices protected their turf. In any organization, individuals or teams that compete and are rewarded for doing better than others will hoard information. In technology firms, hoarding information particularly disables good work.

The corporations that succeeded through cooperation shared with the Linux community that experimental mark of technological craftsmanship, the intimate, fluid join between problem solving and problem finding. Within the framework of competition, by contrast, clear standards of achievement and closure are needed to measure performance and to dole out rewards.

[20] Richard K. Lester and Michael J. Piore, Innovation, the Missing Dimension (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2004), 98.

[21] Ibid., 104."

(Richard Sennett, 2008, pp.32–33)

1). Sennett, R. (2008). "The Craftsman". New Haven & London, Yale University Press.

TAGS

2008boundaries • business units • clarity and discipline • closurecollaborationcommunicationcommunication processcompetitioncompetitive teams • context-dependent communication • cooperationcooperation and collaborationcorporationscraftsmanship • deliberately ambiguous • designers • dividing problems into parts • dole out rewards • engagementengineers • fluid communication • framework of competition • hoarding information • information exchangeinformation in context • internal competition • interpretative community • lateral thinkingLinux • Linux community • measure performance • Michael Piore • MotorolaNokia • open-ended conversation • participationperformanceperformativityproblem findingproblem solving and problem findingproblem-solvingreward • Richard Lester • Richard SennettsalespeopleshareSony Ericssonstandards of achievementsuccess • switching technology • technical information • technical solutions • technological craftsmanship • technology shelf • The Craftsman • undetermined communication • working methods

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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