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date: 17 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter discusses wiki in the context of the debate over seemingly ‘democratizing’ properties of Web 2.0 technologies. Basic features of wiki cannot be easily identified: it can be described as a technology of organizing primarily textual information, in a web-like hyperlinked environment, in which parts can be easily edited by one or multiple users. Tracing the origins of wiki reveals in-built social norms, stemming from the hacker culture, and the idealistic pursuits to democratize the Web. However, in practice wiki technology supports not only innovative open collaboration systems, such as Wikipedia, but also proprietary systems of organization of knowledge, largely strengthening existing power relations in organizations. Employing the concept of technology affordances, the authors outline how organizational consequences of wiki depend on the social context of its implementation.

Keywords: wiki, Wikipedia, open collaboration systems, knowledge management, knowledge management systems, affordances, technology and organizing

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