Social hacks aka Business Models






Please include a summary of the discussion, any recommendations or requests that the group had, and any resources the group noted regarding the topic.

John Smith asked:
What are the social hacks that people have tried that others could borrow? Perhaps the most familiar example of a social hack is the business model. So, we might ask, as an opening question: What are business models for wikis?


**Grant model

**User-solicited funding model

**Sponsored pages model (product or corporate placement)

**Advertising model

**Selling knowledge base tools that reduce costs, either internally or public-facing

**Offering expertise in the set up, utilization, gardening of wikis

**Helping to turn an internal wiki into a public facing wiki


Questions to help potential clients understand difficult-to-recognize value, to see the “preponderance of evidence”:

What are you saving?

What are you not spending?

What are you not losing?


Hack – “an intervention that changes social relations in a particular setting.”



Foundation invites three potential grantees, as well as process development and evaluation people. If grantees are accepted, they will be in a learning cluster, working together for 3-5 years. Key finding: two months is a short timeline for exercise. Takes longer for trust to be cultivated and value gained.


How does collaboration relate to community governance?


The thing that was helpful was to ask them to describe the problem they are trying to solve >> wicked problem.


Setting expectations is important. Collaborative frameworks (wikis) do not always provide quick, individual help, but they are mutually helpful.


The notion that developing content on a wiki is fast is a myth. Being satisfied with unfinished is essential. Decision making is messy. It’s a “rough-draft” world. The tools we use now allow us to face reality.





Short description

Business models and other social arrangements influence the outcome. Business model (hack) innovation is important to talk about.


Remember to link to this session from the Session notes.

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