Today I wanted to discuss the matter of site governance – who makes the decisions about what happens with a Web site.
I would, first, like to prove the relevancy of this topic by laying the framework for such an argument. It goes without saying that technology is a tool; like most tools it is neither inherently bad nor inherently good, it’s what is done with the tool that creates the result.
In online communication (social networking), our tool is actually in two or more different forms. On one side are the tools of access, these being the phones, computers, or other electronics devices which allow us access the Internet. On the other side is the tools of service, this being the Web site which is performing the duty you are requesting of it. Notice how, in this model, the creator (the user of the tool) does not have direct access to the tool that he or she is using – they are using a tool of access to get to it. Thus there is no real ownership of the tool of service, only the tool of access.
There is an interesting paradox that then arises in this: the tool of service holds all of the important data we wish to manipulate; however we only really own the tool of access. Thus we enter into a realm where our information and our tools are to be dictated by whomever owns the Web site – which is not necessarily us. It is then we arrive at the question of who really should have control over the decisions made in regard the to Web site.