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Publisher's Summary

A revelatory examination of how the wildfirelike spread of new forms of social interaction enabled by technology is changing the way humans form groups and exist within them, with profound long-term economic and social effects - for good and for ill.

A handful of kite hobbyists scattered around the world find each other online and collaborate on the most radical improvement in kite design in decades. A midwestern professor of Middle Eastern history starts a blog after 9/11 that becomes essential reading for journalists covering the Iraq war. Activists use the Internet and e-mail to bring offensive comments made by Trent Lott and Don Imus to a wide public and hound them from their positions. A few people find that a world-class online encyclopedia created entirely by volunteers and open for editing by anyone, a wiki, is not an impractical idea. Jihadi groups trade inspiration and instruction and showcase terrorist atrocities to the world, entirely online. A wide group of unrelated people swarms to a Web site about the theft of a cell phone and ultimately goads the New York City police to take action, leading to the culprit's arrest.With accelerating velocity, our age's new technologies of social networking are evolving, and evolving us, into new groups doing new things in new ways, and old and new groups alike doing the old things better and more easily. You don't have to have a MySpace page to know that the times they are a changin'. Hierarchical structures that exist to manage the work of groups are seeing their raisons d'tre swiftly eroded by the rising technological tide. Business models are being destroyed, transformed, born at dizzying speeds, and the larger social impact is profound. One of the culture's wisest observers of the transformational power of the new forms of tech-enabled social interaction is Clay Shirky, and Here Comes Everybody is his marvelous reckoning with the ramifications of all this on what we do and who we are.

Like Lawrence Lessig on the effect of new technology on regimes of cultural creation, Shirky's assessment of the impact of new technology on the nature and use of groups is marvelously broad minded, lucid, and penetrating; it integrates the views of a number of other thinkers across a broad range of disciplines with his own pioneering work to provide a holistic framework for understanding the opportunities and the threats to the existing order that these new, spontaneous networks of social interaction represent. Wikinomics, yes, but also wikigovernment, wikiculture, wikievery imaginable interest group, including the far from savory. A revolution in social organization has commenced, and Clay Shirky is its brilliant chronicler.

©2008 Clay Shirky (P)2011 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Sorry I don't see the magic

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

The primary thrust of the book is "the internet makes it easy for users to communicate". Hardly a mind-bending proposition. The supporting anecdotes were interesting but I kept waiting for some greater insight which was never delivered.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • j
  • 02-03-12

brilliant!

What did you like best about this story?

This story was inspiring and encouraged my mind to wander and imagine opportunities and new possibilities.

Any additional comments?

Serendipitous. That's the word for this work. I was pleasantly surprised at the turns and twists of this book, providing a strong case based on history and current events that we are at the beginning of a new age. We have only begun to realize the potential and fruit of massive, cheap, and easy connectivity. For good and bad.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

How Our World Is Changing

This book really captures one of the main elements about how the Internet is changing our society and our world. The accessibility that everyone has not only to the Internet, but by extension, to each other has significantly changed our lives in ways we can't begin to imagine, but Clay Shirky has tried and, I think, succeeded in nailing down some definitive elements of what those changes mean and what they are. This book is one of my favorites for describing the impact of modern technology on the modern era.
It's a great audiobook; well-read and well-produced. I'm lovin' it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Yay the Internet!

This is essentially a book that celebrates the Internet and social media and their ability to be utilized to allow relatively un or decentralized movements to effect some change. I would have liked more practical comment about how to organize movements, nevertheless it was an intriguing history.

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Timeless and Insightful

What made the experience of listening to Here Comes Everybody the most enjoyable?

The content and the incredible insights

What was one of the most memorable moments of Here Comes Everybody?

The first chapter is such a great vignette that encapsulates the world we live in

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

Less monotone voice. This was the weak point of the book;not weak enough to stop me from listening, but definitely made it less "page turning"

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • A
  • Castle Rock, CO, United States
  • 02-05-13

Great Perspective

Clay Shirky does a great job putting the changing information landscape in perspective. It's an entertaining and thought provoking read.

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Richard
  • Springfield, VA, United States
  • 12-11-12

Great explanation of how ideas spread like fire

If you could sum up Here Comes Everybody in three words, what would they be?

thought provoking communication

What was one of the most memorable moments of Here Comes Everybody?

The opening story grabs you with a "truth and justice" story of disparate and diverse people communicating and joining forces.

What about Eric Michael Summerer’s performance did you like?

Everything, he's one of the reasons I got the book.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I read during my commute, so the option didn't even cross my mind. If I were driving for 10 hours, I could have done it easily, though.

Any additional comments?

NA