From September 26 – 27 a Conference on the Social Semantic Web (CSSW) will be held in Leipzig. The conference will end with a panel discussion on the question “Is there a Social Semantic Web?”.
My opinion is: Yes, there is only a social semantic web. The internet as a whole is of course a social system (what else? drop some bombs and the internet becomes senseless…) which starts reflecting about itself. This process we call the social semantic web.
It is like a little kid starting to talk and to find out that language is about abstracting real things like emotions or feelings. This little person also starts to find out that language is not only about connecting some words, no, there are rules how to connect things.
The novel thing about the semantic web is that the first time in humanity we create a space where human beings will create reality together with computers. Since computers have on advantage compared to people that´s helpful indeed: They have a better overview. They “know” what´s going on in the internet from a higher altitude. YOU will always be the one who teaches the machine and if this collective process won´t be manipulated by some people this will be an even more effective symbiosis on the social semantic web than it´s already now on the Web 2.0.