Sunday, December 17, 2006

Person of the year: YOU!

Time Magazine has a long-standing tradition of making controversial choices for their 'person of the year' with, for instance, Adolf Hitler in 1938 and Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979. As these examples show, the aim of Time's Person of the Year award is not to honour a deserving person, but to name the person who has most affected the news in a given year.

This year, the person of the year according to Time is you: for being an active part of a "community and collaboration on a scale never seen before" on the World Wide Web. According to Time, the biggest story of 2006 is not about conflicts or great men, but it is

about the cosmic compendium of knowledge Wikipedia and the million-channel people's network YouTube and the online metropolis MySpace. It's about the many wresting power from the few and helping one another for nothing and how that will not only change the world, but also change the way the world changes.

All this is not to say that Time is naïvely optimistic about the Web or blind to the downside of all this web activity -- such as the unlimited expression of hate and obscenities -- but on balance their expectations are positive. (Read the full article for more.)

On a more personal note, but in line with Time's choice for person of the year, I want to congratulate all contributors to the blog for the wide variety of interesting entries: well done!

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