Crowdsourcing and User Generated Content

The concept of crowdsourcing can be described as the practice of gathering information, data, and opinions from large groups of people over the internet. These people either paid or unpaid, are brought in to assist companies, websites, and organizations with services such as voting, finances, and micro-tasks. The existence of crowdsourcing has changed the methods of labor on the internet by allowing users and consumers to have an impact on the products and companies they engage with. For example, the toy company Lego is huge on crowdsourcing. Lego allows its consumers to design new products while other users have the option to vote on them. This helps the business understand their consumers while also helping them understand supply and demand. Constance Gustke, author of Crowdsourcing to Get Ideas, and Perhaps Save Money, says “Some of the best business ideas are inspired by others, or so the wisdom of the crowd goes. That is leading more entrepreneurs to tap into other people’s brains — rather than just their pocketbooks — to test new products, set pricing and bring ideas to market faster.” Crowdsourcing is undoubtedly extremely helpful to not just companies but their consumers. With consumers having a say in what is being manufactured and how it is advertised and sold, there is something for everyone. Products will cater to several communities and groups, allowing an increase in productivity and financial success. Megan McArdle, author of The Blurring Line Between Amateur and Professional, expressed “Many ordinary people jump at the chance to be producers as well as consumers. They blog. They tweet. They upload YouTube videos and Flickr photos. They create Wikipedia. Moreover, it turns out that we sometimes prefer amateur content.” Aside from the financial aspect of crowdsourcing, crowdsourcing creates a bond between consumers and businesses. This bond creates trust between both the consumers and businesses as it creates a sense of reliance. Businesses are relying on their buyers to assist them in their success in not just a particular product but their business or company overall. As for the consumers, they rely on said businesses to meet their expectations and appeal to them just enough so they can feel the need or want for the products being created. Both parties need each other to obtain something. Whether that be money, fame, recognition, success, or simply just happiness.

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