In this week’s cover story, Newsweek suggests replacing the term “Web 2.0” with the more descriptive phrase “Living Web,” which refers to the dynamic quality of web content, the organic patterns of growth and expansion online, and the social interactions occurring everywhere.
Not only is the name “Living Web” more logical, but it makes sense to the vast majority of people who don’t know what “Web 2.0” means. This piece provides a solid overview for those trying to understand what is happening on the web by defining concepts like “user-generated content” and “tagging” and explaining what sites like deli.cio.us and Flickr actually do.
I think the most important take-away from the article comes from a quote by Tim O’Reilly, who Newsweek describes as an “early promoter of the Web 2.0 idea,” in which O’Reilly says that “the central idea is harnessing collective intelligence.” (The established newsweekly boldly nods to, but does not dwell on those who “believe that an army of bloggers can provide an alternative to even the smartest journalists.”)
Ultimately, what writers Steven Levy and Brad Stone driving home is the fact that the future of the web, and virtually all of the economic and social opportunities it affords, is undeniably in “our” hands.