Me, My Selfie and iPad – my early thoughts on Web 2.0

As this is a blog, and I can do things here that I would not normally be able to do in an essay, I am going to tell a joke.

I went into PC world today and the man tried to sell me Windows 8. I said to him “Do you think I’m stupid? I already own Windows 95 – I’m not going to downgrade by 87 versions!”

Okay, as jokes go it is not very funny – but a good link to look at the use of numbers to describe the World Wide Web.

There are numerous definitions of the term Web 2.0. Tarik and Karim (2012), describe it as ‘a set of web user-centred design applications’ and Mcloughlin and Lee (2007, p665) define it as

‘a second generation…communicative form of the World Wide Web that emphasises participation, connectivity, collaboration and sharing of knowledge and ideas among users’

Definitions of Web 1.0 are more difficult to find. Mike Evans (2006, Online) describes Web 1.0 as the ‘read-only web’, which juxtaposes against another definition of Web 2.0 as ‘Read-Write Web’ (Richardson, 2006)

While the term Web 1.0 did not exist until the term Web 2.0 was coined in 2004 by Dougherty (cited in JISC, 2007 p.5), the term suggests that the web has become upgraded or improved. This appears to be an assumption that Berners-Lee refutes when he describes Web 2.0 as ‘using the standards which have been produced by all these people working in Web 1.0’ (Laningham (ed.), 2006). Perhaps Web 2.0 does not necessarily refer to the changes, or improvements to the web, but rather to the way in which the web is used. It may have been better to name it Web 1.1, as it is more of a modification than a second generation. Cormode and Krishnamurthy (2008, p4) suggest that it is hard to categorise a website as either Web 2.0 or Web 1.0. They also point out that many Web 1.0 sites are still in use today, whereas many Web 2.0 sites where around long before 2004. The categorisation appears to be determined more by the ethos of the website than the actual website itself.

From my own personal opinion, I have minimal interest in the classification of a web space as Web 1.0 or 2.0. I feel that there are times when I will use a particular site as web 1.0, where I am just accessing information, whereas I may visit the same site on another occasion and want to use it in a Web 2.0 way, such as leaving a comment on a forum.

Finally, I think it should be pointed out that Web 2.0 was coined 10 years ago. If it took companies like Microsoft and Apple 10 years to upgrade their software, they would now be out of business. Has really nothing happened to our use of the World Wide Web over the last 10 years? The internet which I use today is far different from the one I accessed in 2004. Evans in 2006 suggested that we were reaching Web 4.0 – and I would suggest things have moved forward dramatically again since then. I doubt that I will be cited in anyone’s dissertations in the near future, but I propose that we are now at least up to Web 14.0, where the World Wide Web is a historical term when placed next to the App. Reports are now surfacing that Generation Z are abandoning the Web 2.0 staples such as Facebook in favour of Apps which deliver short snippets of interaction such as WhatsApp or Snapchat (Olson, 2013, Online.)

Now, all I have to do is sit back and wait for Tim Berners-Lee to refute my claim.



Anderson, P. (2007) What is Web 2.0? Ideas, technologies and implications for education. JISC Technology and Standards Watch. pp.1-64

Cormode, G. and Krishnamurthy, B. (2008). Key Differences between Web1.0 and Web2.0. Florham Park, NJ: AT&T

Evans, M. (2006). The Evolution of the Web – From Web 1.0 to Web 4.0 [Online]. Available: [20/4/14]

Laningham, S (ed.) 2006. Tim Berners-Lee. Podcast, developerWorks Interviews, 22nd August, IBM website. Cited in: Anderson, P. (2007) What is Web 2.0? Ideas, technologies and implications for education. JISC Technology and Standards Watch. pp.1-64

McLoughlin, C. and Lee, M. (2007) Social software and participatory learning: Pedagogical choices with technology affordances in the Web 2.0 era. Ascilite Singapore 2007. pp. 664-675

Olson, P. (2013) Teenagers say goodbye to Facebook and hello to messenger apps. The Guardian. [Online.] Available: [23/4/14]

Richardson, W. (2006). Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts, and other powerful tools for classrooms. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage

Tarik, M. and Karim, A. (2012) The use of Web 2.0 innovations on Education and Training. Education 2012. Vol2(5) pp. 183-187


One comment

  1. Great post and well written.

    Unfortunately, software has always moved in small iterations: 1.0, 1.01, 1.02 etc.

    Have we moved on? Just look at the figures of the amount of material to uploaded to the web everyday by everyone and their mum.

    So we are more likely to be at Web 2.14, still waiting for the great leap in semantic linguistics to take us to Web 3.0.

    But I will leave that to Tim to discuss when he responds to your post 🙂

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