Many graphic designers are use software that lets them avoid coding.
Web 2.0 really, in 2009, requires coding, a working knowledge of current standards, and staying informed about future standards.
In my opinion, this Web 2.0 Misunderstanding may not be a question of the client misunderstanding anymore than a client who misunderstands what just a presence on the web means.
I have clients who, still, "need to be on the Internet" in their own words.
This to them is whatever is happening on TV.
If TV mentions Twitter, they need to be on Twitter.
If TV mentions Web 2.0, they need to be on Web 2.0.
Those clients don't want to know too many details beyond the buzzwords.
For me, Web 2.0 is about having web pages that convey similar meaning and intent to both a real person and a bot. It is not about cosmetics.
As far as similar cosmetics, my clients like the familiar. They ask questions like, "Yes, I see, but is our competition doing it?" In the end, the client's goals are what is most important. If they want cosmetics, then give them cosmetics no matter what they call it. Its their goal.
In my small world, every one wants interactivity and all the gizmos, bells and whistles. They like the idea of latest trends, fashions and buzzwords, if only to be seen to be cutting edge. Yet few want the extra time, increased costs, added commitment and more man hours that goes along with it! All will strike a "happy balance" of doing a little extra once company finances are threatened.
"It is not what you say or who you are, it is what you do that defines you!"
Web 2.0 is whatever you want it to be. Like any good buzzword, it's open to interpretation -- with every individual picking their particular bias. And yes, if it ever did mean anything once, it's marketing hype now.
....Graphic artists can, in many cases, pass off the more superficial aspects with none the wiser.
....Programmers can indulge in resume-driven programming on the client's dime.
....Business people can seem clued-in and modern on that intertube thing the kids all talk about these days. And deluding themselves with happy fantasies about a Google or Condé Nast buyout.
Like any good buzzword, you can remain inside your silo content in the notion you have accurately grasped the "real meaning," and like any good gated community, you can enjoy the feedback loop of like minded individuals feeding you what you want to hear.
Social. ....Sad ...Pathetic in that way Flash abusers are. But social.
In the vast majority of cases, not one of these types will suggest ....user testing, the only way to see if your users are "interacting" in desirable or productive ways which might prove out Web 2.0 interactions are really all that different. (Which, by the way, shoots big holes in the entire "social computing" aspect many tout). Not one suggests integrating these "social interactions" within the fabric of the business to, say, get closer to their customer or user base and make more user-centered decisions.
Because if they did believe the Web 2.0 hype, they wouldn't be able to say this or that is Web 2.0 -- their user base would have to vote to rank them as Web 2.0.
In practical workaday people-centered reality, that users are generating their own content and interacting with each other keeps them out of the developer's hair. It's a social firewall between developer and user in most cases.
The abusive use of the beta tag is an affront to everything Web 2.0. While promising a sort of Kaizen approach in theory, in dismal practice it's open season on the user. Where every half-baked, untested and uninformed fad gets its day. The Beta Tag is a "get out of doing proper testing or research FREE" card.
Within a few years, you'll see the beta tag realized for what it is: An "under construction" sign with a marketing makeover. As the purple haze lifts Myspace will gain a striking similarity to Geocities ....Facebook will begin to look a lot like a bookmark/contact dump applet ....And all will sound like the echo of the bubble 1.0 pop.
That a very, very, very few actually design what might be called Web 2.0 does not change the issue that Web 2.0 is a recipe for mischief. I suggest you embrace the misunderstanding. Misunderstanding is the only understanding bridging the silos of those who think they, each in their own way, know what Web 2.0 means.
The top 10 things that aren’t Web 2.0 Includes NOT Ajax, RSS, NOT Feature lists: Which includes just about everything else. I recall seeing a listing of a hundred or two differing explanations of what Web 2.0 is -- I just hope no two of 'em works on the same project.
We started talking Web 2.0 around 1997, 1998 when HTML 4.01 was in and on it's way out and they were going to get back to basics with what HTML was supposed to be (markup) and bring in this new thing called CSS to handle design..
Most designers today call Ajax, Silverlight, Air, interaction and all the newer stuff 2.0.. personally it's closer to 4 or 5.0 lol....
IMO.. long as we know what's good, what's old, what's now, and what's coming down the pike and we endevour to design and develop websites which are well coded, continually educate ourselves on the ever changing technologies and standards and meet our clients needs... if we can do those things, I think we're all good.. =o)
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All good ...or a never ending parade of technology "solutions" scouring the landscape in a futile attempt to find a problem someone actually wants to solve.
What's good? How about stopping the fad chasing, shallowest possible implementation without actually interacting with the user. That'd be real good.