Au­thor shares ideas about shar­ing ideas

China Daily (USA) - - BOOK | LIFE - By XING YI xingyi@chi­nadaily.com.cn

The Chi­nese post pho­tos of over­seas va­ca­tions, cute pets and gym self­ies every mo­ment of every day — but so­cial net­works can prove pow­er­ful if users un­der­stand how to dis­till col­lec­tive wis­dom.

That’s the view Is­raeli au­thor and crowd­sourc­ing re­searcher Lior Zoref shares in his book Mind­shar­ing: The Art of Crowd­sourc­ing Ev­ery­thing.

He toured Shanghai and Bei­jing for the Chi­nese edi­tion’s launch this month.

“To­day, so­cial net­works are mostly about shar­ing mo­ments. In the next decade, they’ll also help you an­swer ques­tions and solve com­plex prob­lems,” Zoref writes, quot­ing Face­book’s founder Mark Zucker­berg, in his pref­ace.

“Be­fore my visit to China, I thought US tech­nol­ogy is su­pe­rior with re­gards to so­cial net­works. Now, I think thatChi­nese tech­nol­ogy in some re­spects is far more ad­vanced,” Zoref tells China Daily.

“Peo­ple here are so open to the idea of crowd­sourc­ing, be­cause they use the tech­nol­ogy so much in their life, prob­a­bly more than any other na­tion. That’s why I am so happy to pub­lish the book here.”

Zoref worked at Mi­crosoft as a mar­keter from 1996 to 2010.

He’s pur­su­ing hisPhDat Is­rael’s Bar-Ilan Univer­sity, where he’s re­search­ing ways in which peo­ple can use so­cial net­works for pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment.

His book cites ex­am­ples of how he got ideas for pub­lic speeches and ca­reer de­vel­op­ment from peo­ple on so­cial net­works with whom he wasn’t par­tic­u­larly close, such as ac­quain­tances and friends of friends. He also ex­am­ines how other peo­ple have used so­cial net­works to deal with such prob­lems as man­ag­ing fi­nances, rais­ing chil­dren and find­ing ro­man­tic part­ners.

“There is a say­ing (that) two heads are smarter than one. I say: What about 1,000 heads?” Zoref says.

He also writes about dif­fer­ent strate­gies for dif­fer­ent so­cial-net­work plat­forms, howto man­age dig­i­tal re­la­tion­ships and ask the right ques­tions.

The book it­self is a prod­uct of crowd­sourced brain­storm­ing and edit­ing.

“I wrote the draft of each chap­ter and posted it on­line for com­ments,” Zoref says.

“I said: ‘Don’t tell me it’s great. If you like some­thing ex­plain why. And ify­ou­think­some­thing is miss­ing, tell me why.’”

Zoref says that although crowd­sourc­ing is his topic, dis­cus­sions dur­ing his China visit of­ten veered to­ward ques­tions about how to live hap­pily.

He be­lieves peo­ple should ex­plor­ing and fol­low­ing dreams.

Those­whoare coura­geous enough to share their pas­sions and dreams with oth­ers­may dis­cover crowds will help them re­al­ize them.

Zoref once shared his as­pi­ra­tion to give a TED talk about his con­cept of “mind­shar­ing”.

His close friends told him it was im­pos­si­ble. But his Face­book and Twit­ter friends helped him. He de­liv­ered the first-ever crowd­sourced talk at TED 2012.

“Peo­ple are afraid to share what their pas­sions are. I was scared, too,” Zoref says.

“But be­ing sin­cere, open and vul­ner­a­ble — peo­ple could see that this is true courage and ap­pre­ci­ate it. So, if some­one has good advice, they will tell you and help you.” start their

Lior Zoref, Is­raeli au­thor.

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