Whenever you see the designation “1.0” you think of a version of a software program, right? As in Windows 7 or Internet Explorer 8? To understand Web 2.0, we need to stretch this definition… a lot. Actually, we need to junk it and create a new one. Web 2.0 is the same Internet, same version if you will, applied in new ways.

Web 1.0 refers to tools for publishing static information that is “owned” and considered proprietary, fact checked and attributed. Those who had information are sharing it with those who want it.

Web 2.0 applications are web pages that visitors can add to or change. Users add information, as with the product reviews on Amazon.com, informing other users in reader-friendly ways. Users themselves may create all of the information on an application designed for the purpose of user sharing.

Web 1.0
  • Proprietary
  • Communication pathway: Site?User
  • One-directional interaction





Web 2.0
  • Communal
  • Communication pathway: Site??User
  • Two-directional interaction




The line between Web 1.0 and Web 2.0 applications can be blurred: for example, a news site where the content is “owned” and represented as accurate and objective may include a comments section encouraging users to add content of their own. But in general, Web 2.0 sites are those where the users populate the site’s content as they employ it to do what they want. Think of Pinterest for sharing interests of all kinds, Instagram for sharing photos, Facebook for sharing interests and photos, etc. Wikipedia is Web 2.0; The New York Times is basically Web 1.0.

Are there apps that could help in teaching and learning? Education applications of Web 2.0 sites are in the millions. Just Google “top Web 2.0 sites for education”; 147,000,000 hits in 0.16 seconds will keep you busy over the weekend as you look for something that may help you.

Take a look at these lists:

Larry Ferlazzo's Website of the Day is a Web 2.0 app showcasing Web 2.0 apps for educators.