Genuinely Interesting Disasters Dept.

David Weinberger provides pointers to great discussions of a fascinating train wreck of an idea:

Joho the Blog: The $100,000 Bottom-Up Pyramid|| Zephyr Teachout and Britt Blaser, both veterans of the Howard Dean Internet campaign, reflect on how to fix what’s going wrong at the well-intentioned Since Sliced Bread contest. The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is sponsoring the contest, offering $100,000 to the person who comes up with the best idea for improving the lives of working women and men. 22,000 ideas were submitted which “a group of diverse experts” winnowed to 70, a process some felt was too top down.

This is a fascinating case in which a bottom-up process is supposed to squeeze out a single winner, the contest is intended to advance the social good, and the reward includes a hefty chunk of change.

I sat next to Zephyr Teachout at a conference dinner once. She’s very interesting — someone to watch.

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