By Steve Wheeler
"This is number 4 in the series of blog posts entitled 'Shaping Education for the Future.' Yesterday's post can be found at this link.
"We need to acknowledge that 'Web 2.0' remains a contested label for new and emergent properties that are found on the Web. It is a complex network of dynamic resources that we all acknowledge is constantly changing to adapt to the growing demand for entertainment, communication and access to knowledge. Debate focuses on whether the emerging social applications constitute a sea change or revolution in the Web (cf. Van Dijk, 2002) or simply another phase in its relentless progress. Personally, I find myself in agreement with Brian Winston (2003) who views the Web as a facet of gradual evolution rather than symptoms of sudden revolution. Essentially, the Web has become more social. As with most other technology innovations, Web 2.0 applications have grown out of the need for people to connect together, share experiences and knowledge, enhance their experiences and open up new possibilities in learning. Social software is software that enables people to both read from, and write onto web spaces. It truly is the ‘architecture of participation’ (Barsky and Purdon, 2006) and demands active engagement as a natural part of its character (Kamel Boulos and Wheeler, 2007)."