Week 4 – WEB 2.0: An introduction to Participatory Culture.

13 Aug

WEB 2.0: An introduction to Participatory Culture.

Brad Hutchings, Danh Vo, Alex Devereux

What is WEB 2.0?

Basically, WEB 2.0 is the new, interactive way we use the internet. WEB 1.0 was the old internet in its most basic form. WEB 1.0 restricted users to what they can do on the internet; users were restricted to what they could do on the internet. Now with WEB 2.0, users have limitless possibilities to what they can do on the internet. Web 2.0 refers to the transition from static HTML Web pages to a more dynamic Web that is more organized and is based on serving Web applications to users.

WEB 2.0 allows users to interact, communicate, and share content on the internet. Almost all of today’s most popular websites are made possible through the invent of WEB 2.0, such as Face Book, Twitter, Wikipedia, Flickr and YouTube.  Examples of Web 2.0 include social networking sites, blogs, wikis, video sharing sites, hosted services, web applications, mashup sand tagging. Usage is the most important part of WEB 2.0. WEB 2.0 allows internet users to communicate and interact with users to an extent not seen in WEB 1.0. Social Media has seen the biggest change in usage from WEB 1.0 to 2.0.

Web 1.0


Web 2.0



Google AdSense










Britannica Online



personal websites





upcoming.org and EVDB

domain name speculation


search engine optimization

page views


cost per click

screen scraping


web services




content management systems



directories (taxonomy)






WEB 2.0 has changed the way we use the internet, in a personal and professional level. Businesses have embraced the change to WEB 2.0 to promote their business. Social Media was just a place for people to communicate with each other, now companies use Social Media through the aid of WEB 2.0 can promote their business on a wider scale and interact with consumers like never before.

Content sharing has taken a new form with WEB 2.0. Youtube is the big site when it comes to content sharing. YouTube both allows users to upload personal videos for everyone to see. Companies have taken to YouTube big time to promote their brand. Content sharing also has an illegal form, such as torrent sites and peer-to-peer content.

Class Question ????

With WEB 2.0 all over the internet, are we the user or are we being used?????

How it works?

To better understand Web 2.0, it has been divided in to three parts, which are:

Rich Internet Application: the experience brought from desktop to browser.

Web-Orientated Architecture: forms stronger applications

Social Web: the user is of great importance

An important aspect of Web 2.0 is the Social Web. The Social Web is a platform for the public to communicate their individual perspectives, opinions, thoughts and experiences. This has had great impact upon the Internet, the idea that we can voice our opinions to a greater amount of the population appeals to many people. Blogging has become the modern form of a diary, which benefits the rapid rise of the Internet. The format appeals to many different people, however now we are exposed to advertising through our personal lives.

An important advancement in the architecture of Web2.0 has been a technology called RSS. A step up from CGI, RSS allows users to subscribe to Internet sites, and notifies them of any changes to the website. RSS allows for automatic and immediate publishing of content. Web 2.0 has created instantaneous communication from company to consumer, better than any other technology could.

The main features of Web 2.0 websites include:







These features create an internet that “does not have a hard boundary, but rather a gravitational core” (O’Reilly, T 2005). Web 2.0 is much more interactive form of the Internet. The users have now essentially become a part of the creation. The strength of Web 2.0 is the users ability in transform the Internet to their specified liking, more or less the Web 2.0 has formed the Internet to the users specification.

WEB 2.0 Pros and Cons

Although Web 2.0 satisfies the majority of internet users, like everything else it has its down sides along with the ups.

Web 2.0 pros:

–          Users can quickly find exactly what they are looking for;

A lot of web 2.0 sites have specific search options along with filtering systems. This narrows down your search and can cancel out or highlight certain words or features.

–          Users can be much more interactive;

Majority of websites today have options for users to interact. Whether it’s with the owners or creators of the website or even other users, people have the freedom to express themselves through commenting, liking (Facebook), and rating (rich media websites; Youtube, soundclound etc).


The creation of WEB 2.0 has made the social network boom possible, but are we really more social then we once were?????

–          Keeps you up to date;

Users also have the option of subscribing to certain things, which keeps them updated with whatever they subscribed to. It’s quite handy I must say, with a site like Youtube if you subscribe to a certain video uploaded, it will let you know whenever they upload new material; saving you the trouble of checking regularly.

–          Accessibility is very functional and convenient compared to Web 1.0;

You can access your information almost anywhere, whether it be at home, work, school, at the beach, or at a shopping centre Web 2.0 is accessible on many devices, with a lot of users accessing through their mobiles.

–          More control;

Web 2.0 allows users to have more control over their content. With social networking sites, users can not only determine what content they show to others, but how they show it, and specifically who they show it to. Users can even modify sites through the alteration or addition of CSS and html coding.

–          Extensibility;

Web 2.0 applications are created behind the idea that possible improvements can be made, that there can be further features added on, or enhancements. This way, any additional features or improvements can be added straight onto the application instead of reforming the entire thing into a new version.

Web 2.0 cons:

–          Security;

Now this is a big down side to Web 2.0. With users being able to have so much control and interactivity, it makes it much more simple for outsiders to hack compared to Web 1.0 with everything so open.

On a similar note, in terms of social networking sites such as Facebook, it makes it disturbingly easier for online predators to acquire their targets. An online predator can create a fake Facebook account and add anyone. Once they are accepted by the unknowing user they can access a fair amount of their information.

–          Accuracy of data;

Accuracy and creditability are somewhat of a concern when coming to Web 2.0, what better example to use than Wikipedia. The so called free online encyclopaedia is driven on information generated by its users and therefore is questioned on its creditability although numerous entries have been credibly researched and supported with verifiable and reliable sources.

–          As most Web 2.0 sites are free to use, they don’t really have any obligations to their users;

When signing up to these websites, I can only assume that a fair amount of people don’t read the terms and conditions (I know I don’t), and as we are not paying customers they don’t have any obligation to us and therefore can make any changes to their site at any time. If the website is bought out by another company what’s to say they won’t completely change everything about the site? A small example could be the recent change made by Facebook with their new ‘Timeline’ feature. I am yet to experience it but I’ve seen a fair few people complain about it.

An example I personally have been affected by is how Google bought Youtube. When this first happened and I had to sign into Youtube with a Google account it was quite annoying.

Overall I still think Web 2.0 is a big step up from Web 1.0, it’s what we asked for. All users need to do is be careful of what content they show, who they interact with and always back up your information whatever it may be.








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