Harnessing Community Wisdom: 3 Takeaways from Crowdsourcing Week 2013


crowdsourcing week

If you’ve been following us on Twitter, you might have noticed that the We Are Social team was tweeting about Crowdsourcing Week via @wearesocialsg with the official hashtag #CSW13 this past week.

Crowdsourcing Week claims to be the first international event bringing industry experts, innovators, and participants to discuss crowdsourcing, open innovation and crowdfunding heading. The events span over five days, with 51 presentations, by representatives from 16 countries.

We were on the ground live-tweeting for the talks on Day 2 of #CSW13, which saw some of the best minds in the industry coming together at Singapore Management University. The atmosphere was buzzing with conversation and discussion, as leading industry experts, speakers, and attendees shared their experiences and best practices on crowdsourcing.

Here are We Are Social’s top three key takeaways about crowdsourcing:

  1. Crowdsourcing is about harnessing communities
  2. Crowdsourcing is social with a purpose
  3. Crowdsourcing is exploding

#1: Crowdsourcing is about harnessing communities

“No matter who you are, most of the smartest people work for somebody else,” quotes keynote speaker Sean Moffitt, an industry expert in crowdsourcing and author of WikiBrands.

Crowdsourcing taps into the hearts and minds of networks beyond owned resources, to collaborate on problem-solving, innovation and efficiency. The result? Harnessing the wisdom of the crowds for more and better solutions.

Here are some statistics about crowdsourcing that were shared:

David Berkowitz shared how well-known brands have crowdsourced consumers for their advertising campaigns, such as Oreo’s Daily Twist, where users voted on the design of the 100th Daily Twist, Doritos’ Crash the Bowl, and Lincoln’s Steer the Script.

Oreo High Five

Speakers from companies such as ImageBrief, eYeka, Talenthouse, and 99designs were present to share their crowdsourcing best practices. These sites tap into their grown communities to address briefs related to photography, advertising ideas, music, and graphic design. Maria Ressa from Rappler, shared how her social news network in the Philippines uses crowdsourcing to dictate top news and gather on-ground sentiment.

#2: Crowdsourcing is social with a purpose

In many ways, crowdsourcing is highly integrated with social media. Many crowdsourcing initiatives use social media and channels to build and tap into the wisdom of communities. At the same time, crowdsourcing takes social communities one-step further with these key tenets: Purpose, Passion, Merit, and Money.

Purpose is the top differentiator between crowdsourcing and social media. Crowdsourcing rallies social conversations and communities towards a common purpose, which we don’t typically see coming through as strongly in social media. Sean Moffitt identifies industries such as healthcare, education, and not-for-profits as those which stand the most to gain and improve from crowdsourcing communities for the betterment of society.

Crowdsourcing is transforming social media into social good, explains Epi Ludvik Nekaj, Founder and CEO of Crowdsourcing Week. “We are seeing that Social Media as we know it, is turning into Social Productivity,” says Nekaj.

#3: Crowdsourcing is exploding

Ross Dawson, author of Getting Results from Crowds, shared his observations that in the next decade, crowdsourcing will transform the shape of work to the point that we will barely recognise new jobs and nature of work.

The general consensus seems to be that crowdsourcing will irrevocably change the way businesses approach problem-solving. We can look forward to more brands crowdsourcing consumers for their ideas for new products and services. At the same time, we can also expect more brands to crowdsource with their employees to build stronger brands, products, and services.

In the apt words of the speakers: ‘Participation is the new brand’, and “the crowds are the future”.


The Crowdsourcing Week conferences run for three days from June 4 to 6, and ends off with a Crowdfunding Workshop on June 7 that aims to give startups the opportunity to network with investors and industry experts and share with other innovators.

Overall, we really enjoyed the talks and live-tweeting for Day 2 of Crowdsourcing Week!

wearesocial crowdsourcing week

Do tell us about what you think about crowdsourcing or Crowdsourcing Week in the comments!