Adam Gartenberg's Blog

Business Analytics and Optimization, IBM and Social Marketing

Thought of the day: Where do they find the time

Some thought-provoking concepts from Clay Shirky (Via Social Media Today).

A rough estimate of how much time people have collectively spent building out Wikipedia?  100 Million hours.

100 Million is a pretty big number.  That's 11,000 years added up end to end.  As Clay was asked by an incredulous interviewer:  "Where do they find the time?"

But as always, a little perspective helps.

Here in America, we watch 100 Million hours of TV commercials.  

A weekend.

Or put another way, in the US we collectively watch 200 Billion (with a B) hours of television a year.  Kind of makes the amount of time spent on Wikipedia rather insignificant, doesn't it?

Of course, that's not really the point of the video.  The point is that we're still at the early point of figuring out what to do with the cognitive surplus we now have.  Spending hours on Wikipedia is just the tip of the iceberg.