[Taxacom] human involvement (was Re: BioNames)

Stephen Thorpe stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz
Tue Jun 4 02:58:28 CDT 2013

I'm not on Facebook!!

From: Roderic Page <r.page at bio.gla.ac.uk>
To: Doug Yanega <dyanega at ucr.edu> 
Cc: "taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu" <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu> 
Sent: Tuesday, 4 June 2013 7:49 PM
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] human involvement (was Re: BioNames)

On 3 Jun 2013, at 23:13, Doug Yanega wrote:

> Realistically, one either needs to improve the incentive for 
> participation in the system (such as making participation effectively 
> mandatory, as happens with GenBank), 

Why must the incentive be making it mandatory? Ultimately this seems lazy  "you must do this because we can't think of a way to make it worth your while." It also requires that people can be bullied into compliance.

What if we had a tool that offered enough value to individuals that they wanted to participate? That solved a problem that users had, and as a by product built something of broader value? This, to me, is the lesson of Mendeley. You tackle the individual point of pain, and incidentally get people to build what you wanted them to build for you. Alternatively, you make an experience so compelling that you have to join ("wadda you mean you're not on Facebook?").



Roderic Page
Professor of Taxonomy
Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences
Graham Kerr Building
University of Glasgow
Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK

Email: r.page at bio.gla.ac.uk
Tel: +44 141 330 4778
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Home page: http://taxonomy.zoology.gla.ac.uk/rod/rod.html
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