"Because all the public media we've known until recently
abided by Gutenberg economics, we assumed, without
even really thinking about it, that media needed
professionals to guarantee its very existence. We
assumed that we audience members weren't just relegated
to consuming, but preferred that status. With this implicit
theory of the media landscape in our heads, generous, public,
and creative behavior does indeed look puzzling, at the very
least. Like so many surprising behaviors, this one comes
mainly from mistaking an accidental pattern for a deep truth."
"People surprised at our new behaviors assume that behavior
is a stable category, but it isn't. Human motivations change
little over the years, but opportunity can change a little or a lot,
depending on the social environment. In a world where
opportunities change little, behavior will change little, but when
opportunity changes a lot, behavior will as well, so long as the
opportunities appeal to real human motivations."
"A study of video games concluded that the principal draw for
the players was not graphics and gore but the feelings of control
and competence the players could attain as they mastered the game."
"When you see people acting in ways you don't understand,
you may ask rhetorically, Why are they behaving that way? A
better question is this: Is their behavior rewarding a desire for
autonomy, or for competence? Is it rewarding their desire to feel
connected or generous? If the answer to any of those questions
is yes, you may have your explanation. If the answer to more
than one of those questions is yes, you probably do."
All excerpts taken from:
Cognitive Surplus: Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age