I’ve recently been following the fascinating work of Jeff Howe, a Wired magazine reporter who has written a book on what he calls “Crowdsourcing.” Crowdsourcing as he defines it is “the act of taking a job traditionally performed by a designated agent (usually an employee) and outsourcing it to an undefined, generally large group of people in the form of an open call.”

This week, Howe is putting crowdsourcing to a very personal use. Explaining that this is the first time he’s written publicly about his situation, he writes on his blog that his son, Finn, has developmental delays. And he asks for advice:

We remained mostly silent about our circumstance, telling only close friends and family. But a recent email exchange with a reader changed my mind. It turns out he has extensive experience working with kids with developmental delays. It turns out a lot of people do. And our silence hasn’t served us. And it defintely hasn’t served our son. …

I’m not crowdsourcing for your sympathy. Raising Finn may be mind bendingly difficult, but there are far better candidates for pity. He’s healthy, active and calendar-grade cute. I am crowdsourcing for your information. Know of a Brooklyn-based support group for special needs caretakers? Bring it on. How about special therapies to increase social engagement in toddlers? I want to know about it. I am, in short, hoping to make contact. I strongly suspect that many of you have experience—far more experience than us—trodding this strange road we’ve found ourselves on. And just maybe, some of you have a map. We’d love to see it.

Maybe GothamSchools readers can offer ideas.

(Via Nieman Journalism Lab.)