Wikipedia Page on Graceland (album)

I remember being in high school and trying to do a report over Rivers Cuomo. His Wikipedia page was a great source for me and so I used it for my report. My teacher did not have the same sentiment as me. She expressed ideas that are very similar to those discussed in Henry Jenkins’ article titled “What Wikipedia Teaches Us About New Media Literacies”. He analyzes the purposes of Wikipedia and with his lecture in mind, I looked at the Wikipedia page for Graceland, the album by Paul Simon. This page discusses the awards won by the album, those credited, some album background and the track listing, but is not a scholarly source or an unflawed source because of the concept of collective intelligence.

Having reviewed the information present on the Wikipedia page, I feel that the viewers are not getting the full picture of the album. The background information on the album does touch on his failure with the album Hearts and Bones and his peaked interest in the Boyoyo Boys, but does not discuss the trouble he encountered and how crazy people thought he was for wanting to go to Africa and search out their best musicians to feature on the album. Also, I feel as though the reader is limited because Wikipedia is not capable of providing information and a link to the Boyoyo Boys, which was a trigger for the entire album.

Boyoyo Boys   Wikipedia  the free encyclopedia

Now the question of whether or not this Wikipedia page represents the idea of collective intelligence arises. Jenkins defines collective intelligence as “the ability to pool knowledge and compare notes with others towards a common goal”. I analyzed the history of edits to find that 580 revisions have occurred on the page from mostly everyday users, which exemplifies collective intelligence. 

Graph of revisions         

In the article I found issues that have occurred on the page based on it’s ability to pool knowledge from everyday people. Things throughout the history were labeled red, which stands for a deletion. This really helps to understand why some teachers and educators may “worry that youth aren’t developing an appropriate level of skepticism about the kinds of information found on this particular site” (Jenkins). If Wikipedia has to worry about deleting certain edits, than it is good to be weary of what may be a falsity on a Wikipedia page.

User Fritz Saalfeld   Wikipedia  the free encyclopedia

This one stood out to me. This edit was deleted based on the fact that the username and profile of this editor could not be traced. Had I been reading this page before the users edit was removed, I would have been presented with potentially misleading information about the album.

Overall, Wikipedia is an educational source and a good example of the idea of collective intelligence, but it is a common space for knowledge and, due to this, needs to sometimes be taken with a grain of salt or used as a starting point for research on a topic.


Works Cited:

“Graceland(album)”.Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation. Web. 13 February 2014.

Jenkins, Henry. “WHAT WIKIPEDIA CAN TEACH US ABOUT THE NEW MEDIA LITERACIES (Part one)”.  Web log post. Confessions of an AcaFan. N.p., 27 June 2007. Web. 13 February 2014.




Skyla Taylor

Blog Post 1

FMS 110

            Spotify is an application that is one of the contributors to a change in how society is listening to music.  Spotify for Dummies describes it as a “magic act.” With Spotify you can practically pull music out of thin air (Gilmour Ch. 1). It requires no downloads and takes up very little space on your phone or computer. All you have to do is click search and a grand world of music awaits you.

            The man behind this “magic trick” is Daniel Ek. He had grown up loving both technology and music and had a deep understanding of both. From this understanding came Spotify. At first, those he talked to as potential investors were stoked. Social media was such a big thing and music has always been a huge part of people’s lives, so bringing these together intrigued people (Bertoni).  This fascination is similar to the fascination Gunning discusses in his essay. He says that new technologies “evoke a short-lived wonder” and “involve magical operations”, but then this dissipates to habit (Gunning 47).  Similar reactions were felt with Spotify.  It was exciting and evoked wonder, but now is a technology that has been around for six years. It is now habitual.  

            In their advertisements, Spotify drew on common conceptions of music such as it being for the people and a special part of life, but made those work in a way that made Spotify look magical. The below commercial places Spotify in the position of being the business who is saying yes to music when you want and how you want.. It shows a man crowd surfing over a large audience in order to show the public that Spotify is an object for the masses and will give you an exhilarating experience. Then the commercial  plays on immediacy of music in this commercial in order to make the audience understand how important it is to have an application that puts you in control. This all works together to convince the audience that Spotify is everything they’ve been waiting for.

            Despite all the talk of Spotify being a magical innovation, it was not all alone a huge technological breakthrough, when you look at P2P technology. According to a case study on Spotify, “Internet and peer-to-peer (P2P) technology changed the way of music creation, delivering and consuming” (JU 120). So, even though Spotify is credited as ingenious for its relation of social media sharing and music, P2P technology is the original and the reason why Spotify can be what it is.

            Overall, Spotify is a technology that broke through barriers of what people thought was possible with music and due to this, created a sense of wonder.


Works Cited

Bertoni, S. n.d. n. page. <         daniel-ek-the-most-important-man-in-music/>.

Gilmour, Kim. Spotify for Dummies. John Wiley and Sons , 2011. eBook.   < of             spotify&lr=&source=gbs_navlinks_s>.

Gunning, Tom. “Re-newing Old Technologies .” . N.p.. Web. 2 Feb 2014.   <            33138957_1/courses/2014Spring-T-FMS110-19727/Gunning_Re-  NewingTechnology.>.

Ju, X. n. page.

            <            2010.pdf