Christian Kreutz has written up his reflections on the recent Web2.0fordev conference. He points to a question that many nonprofits are struggling with:
Another key lesson was the big question of ‘how to best combine all these web2.0 tools to obtain better results.’ Everybody is still experimenting –this might be what web2.0 is all about. Nevertheless, I understood the importance of taking a holistic approach ... How do I offer all these channels for collaboration and still filter what is important to me? This has to be overcome to prove the benefit and not just use the technology for the sake of it.
He also make a few other points worth noting:
I had the feeling everybody shared an enthusiasm for the potential that development can have, but I also only saw a few clear structured projects. A complete contrast to that was Damir Simunic, who talked about Collaboration on the Edge of Network. He basically argued that web2.0 is still too far away from broad usage by presenting a tool relying solely on emails, which has enough capabilities. Even though I find email is often an information overload application, Damir gave an interesting example: at the WHO, a 20.000 people network manages over easy mailing lists and easy features, proving traditional ways can be successful, especially in developing countries.
Also, pointed to some threads about filtering:
The question of relevance of all this user generated content was rarely discussed. Ethan ZuckermannHow to filter the information or voices to a meaningful size to find all that that is important to me. Aggregators can help, and so do social bookmarking sites, which show evaluated ranked webistes. More important are however, people, who sort, comment and translate content and make sense and relevance in the growing sea of information. emphasized in his presentation how important filters in this regard are.