The whole idea of crowdsourcing is an interesting yet frightening one. Shirky expands upon it in his novel Here Comes Everybody. It's the concept of outsourcing tasks that were once meant for a contractor or specialized employee to someone in a large group (crowd) who is more fit to do the job.
What has led to this transition and change? Simply the emergence and popularity of social media as well as accessibility. Many jobs are becoming obsolete whether its intentional or unintentional. Today, everyone who has access to the Internet can be their own journalist. You don't even need a college degree or GED to publish your thoughts and opinions for the whole world to see.
The Internet is an information hub. It has great potential and can do incredible things. It turns the hierarchical approach to business on its head, starting from the bottom up instead and letting the users rise to the occasion. Poptent is a great example of this. If client needs a commercial or visual to promote their product or business, Poptent turns to its user base with your ideas in mind. The client can choose from a variety of user-created videos to purchase for the furthering of their own business. Jacob Fenley also touches on this idea in his blog post: Crowdsourcing: The Ultimate Amateurization.
It's interesting to think about all the fields that are becoming or might become unspecialized. It definitely plays a role in the future of our children and their children. What can they go to college for that can't already be done my the masses. Technology is constantly advancing, and in the next 30, 40 years or so the reach of social media will be a vast one. Will teachers lose their jobs? Like I said and keep saying, it's interesting to think about and even scary at times. In my opinion I think that there will always be a need for some specialized instructor. The human to fix the robot if you will. But we won't really know until we experience it for ourselves. Until then all we can do is sit and wait and make the most of the situation were in.