Wisdom of the Crowds – What To Do When Colbert Wins

I saw an AP story on MSNBC titled Oops: Colbert wins space station name contest. I’m a bit of an expert when it comes to letting the internet vote on a name, if there is such a field of expertise, and the article strikes me as wrongheaded.

It’s not an “oops” that Colbert won, nor is it a problem or a mistake. Assuming the result is due to voting viewers and the web’s general affection for Colbert, and not a voting bot, this is exactly what NASA wants. Or at least, what it should have wanted.

The point of putting something up for a vote online is to involve people in a fun way and come out with a result you might not have otherwise. You can’t have the wisdom of the crowds without expecting a bit of whimsy.

Here’s to NASA naming their module after Colbert.

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2 thoughts on “Wisdom of the Crowds – What To Do When Colbert Wins

  1. He won the write in contest not the “official” poll so they already said that they aren’t obligated to naming the space station “Colbert” even though that would be totally awesome.

  2. Of course, they have the right to do whatever they want with the results – we didn’t just take the top vote getter in our poll either. But I hope they do, it will be a much more interesting story. Thanks for the comment.

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