I get a lot of spam on my email account I publicize in this blog and yet I prefer to keep it since once in a while something interesting comes in. Earlier this morning I deleted a couple dozens of emails suggesting link exchange and other “wonderful” ideas on improving my blog, for some reason one email caught my eye, and boy I’m glad I did. It was an advertizing of service that I have not heard of. Clearly spam yet unusually so it was worth looking at. The company Mancx turned out to be an outsourcing marketplace with a very interesting model – it offers knowledge crowdsourcing. Think about LinkedIn answers but with a price tag attached to it. Ask your question, put a $$ amount you are prepared to pay for it, and maybe someone in a crowd will answer it. Of course you can be one of many who answer the questions at the same time.
I browsed through the site and instantly found a few things that were wrong with it. I guess the team needs a good product manager and usability expert. Yet I loved the idea. How many times I found myself desperately looking for the answers to questions to no avail? I am sure that many of you did as well. And at the same time the chances are the answers are out there, someone knows exactly what I am looking for, it’s on the tip of their tongue, on the top of their mind… You can do ad hoc knowledge outsourcing. I think it’s one more step towards making the world flat since the person who answers your question could be sitting in a cubicle near you or just about 15,000 miles away.
One thing is interesting though, the business model and software behind the site seems to be so easy to replicate. In particular it could be implemented almost instantly by LinkedIn or Facebook, so hopefully guys Mancx have some tools to protect themselves.