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I feel strongly that "frictionless" is something new and a bit scary which is distinct from your definition above. My rationale for this is the way the frictionless apps such as The Guardian work on facebook, inserting content into what appears to be (but is no longer, directly) a user-defined stream. While this is good for "sharing", it is a new level and we should not devalue the term by merging it with what has gone before such as Like buttons or +1's.


I kind of feel the other way - frictionless sharing was a good way of describing this lightweight sharing long before FB appropriated the term. Now it's become something sinister. Goddammit, we had it first! Reclaim it!


Thanks for the link to my post.

I agree with your comment that "frictionless sharing was a good way of describing this lightweight sharing long before FB appropriated the term". If you've used the term in this context in your book, I'll cite it in the Wikipedia entry - especially since it has been suggested that the article should be merged with the Facebook entry.

However when you go on to suggest that we should "Reclaim it!" you don't address the issue of possible confusion with those who equate the term with use in Facebook. I assume this is something we have to accept and part of the reclaiming of the term will be to promote the diversity of ways in which such sharing may be implemented - and also, as Pete Johnston pointed out, that not everyone will necessarily be happy with such sharing in all contexts.

Scott Leslie

The practice you describe is a wonderful affordance of network-based life, that sharing can simply happen as a result of the act itself being digital and on the network. The term, on the other hand, makes me run straight for the nearest can of Neologism-Off, the new spray I've invented to repel terms like this.


@Scott - yeah, I know what you mean. It has echoes of the whole frictionless economy thing in the dot com bubble which was another way of saying "I'm a knob". But I do think it's interesting as something that happens in academic practice, and has some profound(ish) implications for how we construct knowledge, do public engagement, form peer networks, communicate, etc. So I'm happy with it as a shorthand, just because you need some words to describe it. But maybe not as a buzzword

Account Deleted

Your site is for sure worth bookmarking.


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