The Harms of Crowdsourcing

Crowdsourcing is not all its hyped up to be. Crowdsourcing allows for the ability of inaccurate information to be displayed. As seen on the most common crowdsourcing cite Wikipedia has inaccurate information posted all the time, this can be due to the fact that anyone can edit Wikipedia. Another lesser known example comes from an article from A Breaking News, This article talks about SketchFactor, an app that allows users to rate the sketchiness of neighborhoods and the sketchiness is displayed with colored dots on a map. The idea may have been good in theory however, in execution the idea does not work. The article states:

Along with operational problems – such as the fact that comments are not screened before they’re                            posted – the app has fundamental problems. Chief among those are many ratings that cite the presence of African-Americans as a reason for danger. Others involve prejudice against homeless people who pose no safety risk.

SketchFactor displays didn’t weigh each individually entry against each other for validity which means that 1 bad rating change people’s views of the neighborhood. If crowdsourcing had been set up differently maybe SketchFactor would have been a good app but with how crowdsourcing is currently the app did not.

I firmly believe that we should leave the projects that crowdsourcing is trying to eliminate to the experts. It may be cutting down on costs for the businesses but it’s also cutting out the experts. When you cut out the experts you get results that are subpar and results that aren’t reliable.

One reason I’ve found that people find crowdsourcing a good idea is that it can save money but I believe that you should not use a scape goat by going to crowdsourcing instead of going to someone who knows what they are doing. If money is an issue try hiring someone who is just starting out with their career who would be willing to work at a cheaper price just to get the experience but make sure to get a contract.

Overall I think that crowdsourcing is unnecessary and we should leave the work to the experts.


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