Harnessing the Power of Social Media
As the internet continues to grow and change at exponential rates, Jimmy Wales discusses how open-source, open-content technology will affect the fundamental ways that businesses interact with customers, distributors, suppliers, and the public in the future.
A ‘Wiki’ Future
As a leading technology futurist, Mr. Wales presents how open-source, open-content technology is changing the face of the internet and how businesses must adapt in the face of this rapidly evolving technology in order to compete and innovate. Businesses today are starting to use the same collaborative tools that Wikipedia employs, and it's worth learning from the monumental success of the Wikipedia model.
Democracy and the Internet
Freedom of speech and the distribution of knowledge is the foundation of Wikipedia. Mr. Wales predicts that the internet will democratize developing countries by making the world ‘flat,’ opening markets, promoting cultural understanding, and giving developing nations the resources they need to compete in the 21st century. With current total Internet usage by one billion people set to double in the next five to 10 years (with the majority of new users arising from developing nations), Mr. Wales asserts that internet will combat stereotypes, censorship, media control, and monopolies while simultaneously allowing citizens of developing nations to have a more prominent voice. As Mr. Wales states: "It does not take a lot of technology to foster open dialog and debate. Even the simplest technologies like mailing lists, wikis, blogs can help a lot. What is needed mostly, I think, is more content in local languages, and support from people around the world to help others join in the global conversation."
Founder of One of the Most Visited Websites in the World
Wikipedia is operated by the Wikimedia Foundation, a nonprofit charitable organization Mr. Wales founded to encourage the growth, development and distribution of free, multilingual content, and to provide the full content of these wiki-based projects to the public free of charge. As part of his work at his for-profit company, Wikia, Inc., Mr. Wales is developing a human-powered search engine, Search Wikia, which will be based on the same open, transparent, community-driven principles of Wikia and Wikipedia.