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Oct. 22, 2013 8:30 am

Difference between contructive and ‘corrosive criticism’: Clay Shirky

That was the heart of the keynote address from academic, public intellectual and new media thinker Clay Shirky at the first ever Code for America Summit held in San Francisco last week.

Constructive criticism makes you smarter when you respond. ‘Corrosive’ criticism is only meant to stop  you from acting, not improve your outcome.

That was the heart of the keynote address from academic, public intellectual and new media thinker Clay Shirky at the first ever Code for America Summit held in San Francisco last week.

Civic technology leaders from around the country spoke, including Shirky, whose address hit on the subject often.

“The outcome of a hackathon isn’t a solution. The outcome is a better understanding of a problem,” he said.

Of resistance to big new ideas: “They say ‘That won’t work,’ and then it works. That won’t last, and then it lasts. That won’t scale, and then it scales. Then we realize it’s embedded.”

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Christopher Wink

Christopher Wink is a co-founder and editor of Technical.ly, the local technology news network. Previously, Wink worked for a homeless advocacy nonprofit and was a freelance reporter for a variety of publications. He writes regularly about news innovation and best business practices on his personal blog here. The bicycle commuter loves cities, urban politics and squabbling about neighborhood boundaries.

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