The great WikiNow

I was following links from Victor to other people’s attempts to combine wiki’s and weblogs. Turns out there are not only conceptual differences that make this a Hard Thing:

– A weblog is timebased
– A wiki exists in the Great Now

… but also cultural differences:

– A wiki is very much a group effort.
– A blog is a soapbox, an individualistic effort.

Bring this together with Hofstede’s work on cultural differences, specifically the dimensions Power Distance, Collectivism and Individualism, and it turns out that blogs will appeal to cultures which value individualism (US), and wikis to cultures which value collectivism more.

However, it so happens that countries which value collectivism more (which should encourage wiki-ing), often also have a greater power distance (ie. you don’t question your superiors), which may lead to less wiki-ing.

Costa Rica is the only country Hofstede tested that has small power distance, yet a high degree of collectivism. So Costa Rica wikis should rule.

Which leads me to conclude, dear Watson, that wiki’s and blogs are very good examples of how culturally determined values influence web use.

0 thoughts on “The great WikiNow

  1. If this is true, we should be able to test this empirically.
    There should be a way in which we look to see if Costa Ricans are more likely to use wikis than are North Americans.

  2. Noticia importante para todos los ticos: http://www.diarioextra.com/2008/mayo/05/nacionales08.php POR NO ACEPTAR TRÁFICO DE INFLUENCIAS LE CORTARON LA CABEZA A BERROCAL: Así de contundente fueron las declaraciones del ex director de la Fuerza Pública, Fabio Pizarro, quien visitó DIARIO EXTRA para exponer lo que considera ha sido un montaje político para dañar la imagen del ex ministro Berrocal y la suya, solo por no aceptar el tráfico de influencias.

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