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Wednesday, 5 September, 2007

  • Newsnight
  • 5 Sep 07, 06:16 PM

Reading a bookExtremist library books
Are public libraries inadvertently helping political Islamists in their recruitment drive? We reveal how extremist Islamic literature - including works by men convicted of incitement to murder - are freely available in public libraries in Tower Hamlets and how the collection is, in the words of the man who carried out the research "warped" towards extreme Islam. One former Islamist tells us these kinds of books are "dangerous". So are these libraries failing their local community?

Terror arrests
Possibly more devastating than Madrid or London - That is the verdict of the German officials on arresting three terror suspects earlier today who are accused of plotting to blow up Frankfurt Airport and and American military base in the country. Those arrested appear to have spent time at a Pakistani terror training camp. We'll have the latest details.

A leaky pipe
A report into the Foot and Mouth outbreak earlier in the summer is expected to find that the virus was carried through faulty pipes which leaked during the floods. But who is to blame?

What hope for Darfur?
We travel to the region with the UN Secretary General as he visits a refugee camp in Darfur and assesses the humanitarian crisis. He's also meeting the Sudanese President to discuss the deployment of the UN/AU peacekeeping force. But how effective can the force be when the Sudanese government are calling the shots. Meanwhile factional fighting between several different rebel groups is making the situation even more difficult to resolve.

We talk to the author of a new book called 'Wikinomics' who says we've barely begun to see how the internet will effect the way we live and work. Social networking is passe and will be replaced by collaboration in which individuals will be given the opportunity to become the professionals - leading to greater innovation and changing the way business and scientific problems can be solved. Is this a cheap way for businesses to carry out research or are we entering a new era in which the power of the consumer is on a more equal footing with big business? Read an extract and leave your thoughts here.

Army Special
And a quick reminder about our special programme on Thursday about the state of the army. We'll have the first interview with General Sir Mike Jackson in advance of the launch of his autobiography next week. And you can submit your own thoughts in writing on the website, or create a video message and send us a link by clicking here.

Wikinomics - Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams

  • Newsnight
  • 5 Sep 07, 04:37 PM

WikinomicsWikinomics by Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams looks at how companies are beginning to use mass collaboration of knowledge to gain success.

Citing many examples of successful and surprising projects, the authors explain how big businesses could harness external expertise by engaging directly with and rewarding participation from their customers, users and a wide pool of informed contributors - a method of epitomised by the online encyclopaedia 'Wikipedia', where entries are written and edited by users. 'Crowdsourcing' rather than 'outsourcing' as they put it.

Far from being sceptical about the power of mass collaboration - see Andrew Keen's The Cult of the Amateur, another Newsnight Book Club entry - Tapscott and Williams claim Wikinomics could provide the basis for huge economic and intellectual growth.

In line with their own thesis, the last chapter of the book will be written by readers and is already open for contributions here.

Watch Paul Mason's report on Wikinomics and an interview with Don Tapscott.

Read the book's introduction below, and leave your thoughts and comments at the end.

From the introduction
Throughout history corporations have organized themselves according to strict hierarchical lines of authority. Everyone was a subordinate to someone else—employees versus managers, marketers versus customers, producers versus supply chain subcontractors, companies versus the community. There was always someone or some company in charge, controlling things, at the “top” of the food chain. While hierarchies are not vanishing, profound changes in the nature of technology, demographics, and the global economy are giving rise to powerful new models of production based on community, collaboration, and self-organization rather than on hierarchy and control.

Continue reading "Wikinomics - Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams"

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