Back in June I worked with a team that hacked together an interface for a simple predictive market in which Yahoo employees with trade shares in projects that would pay out when the project IPO’d by getting released to the public. The idea was that value would go towards projects that the Yahoo engineers thought had the greatest merit. With a quick glance at the top "stocks," executives could see which projects were worth allocation of resources and budget.
The hack was a proof-of-concept and while the project has been noodled on by that hack day team, the concept of leveraging the "wisdom of crowds" to drive decision making has spread out to other areas at Yahoo.
Most recently, Yahoo Autos has released a user-driven version of it’s feedback center that allows anyone to vote on comments. It’s like Digg for the help center and is available for any Yahoo property to adopt for their own site.
Bix (recently acquired by Yahoo) also fits nicely into the predictive markets suite and can basically be looked at as a predictive markets engine for talent. Lip-sync karoke smackdown with user voting.
Finally, Yahoo’s hosting a conference about Predictive Markets and to kick it off, James Surowiecki, the author of The Wisdom of Crowds, will be speaking. There will be other speakers as well during this seminar which runs from 5:30 – 8pm on December 13th here at Yahoo in Sunnyvale, CA. Admission is free so mark yourself down as attending on the upcoming.org link and come on down!