Posts Tagged ‘egosystem’
If you want to know the future of technology and its impact on society study how younger generations interact with one another today. With the sting of a face palm, you’ll experience a sheer rush of humility as you realize that everything you thought you knew about tech is simply nascent compared to the sophistication of digital natives. No matter how connected you are or how many followers or friends you have online, there’s a sense of artistry mashed together with counter intuitive behavior that just works.
Have you ever noticed that your Facebook News Feed is the digital equivalent to “It’s a Wonderful Life?” Perhaps you’ve likened your Instagram stream to that of “Lifestyles of the Digital Rich and Internet Famous.”
In each network, and across multiple social streams, you’re fed a visual buffet of seflies, travel, food, fashion, and celebrations. In assemblage, they tell the story of life well lived, or at least a life well curated. At the center of each of these experiences is the person living and sharing them in real time. Every day that passes, it seems that a growing network of our friends, family, and colleagues are charmed with this picturesque life.
Social media is a global phenomenon indeed. Certainly Facebook, Twitter, Google+, in their own way, each make the world a much smaller place. The distance between any two people is shrinking as the number of network connections continues to proliferate. I’m sure you’ve heard at one point or another, that the distance between two people in an offline world is six degrees. In a recent Facebook study for example, the average degree of separation between two people in the network is only 4.74. When focused on one country specifically, such as the U.S., Sweden, or Italy, among others, the number of hops between two people further shrinks to 3.74.
The Egyptian Revolution is a historical event for many reasons, not the least of which is the relentless dedication of human will to overcome tyranny against all odds. For those who study social networks, the revolution is also of course significant because of the role Facebook and Twitter played in the concentration of discontent and the orchestration of upheaval. For the purpose of this discussion, I would like to focus on how Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other social networks continue to demonstrate the revolutionary effects of network density and continue to escalate the promise of social connectivity as part of our digital sustenance.
There’s an old saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Twitter is a paradox that redefines that old saying to, “If it’s broke, don’t fix it, because it works.”
For all intents and purposes, Twitter shouldn’t work, yet 200 million people (and bots) have created accounts in this thriving information egosystem. Now, news no longer breaks, it Tweets. Celebrities use it daily to connect directly with fans and also augment their income streams. Politicians and governments use Twitter to communicate with constituents and one another. Everyday people rely on Twitter to find information and share experiences. And for those more “influential” Twitter users, connectedness pays off in the form rewards, recognition, and compensation.
Celebrity endorsements are nothing new. In the era of social media however, celebrities now possess the ability to reach people in online networks. The difference now is that static or passive audiences have become interactive and more importantly, people have become stakeholders in the media where connect and socialize. Celebrities are presented with opportunities to engage people on a peer-to-peer level. Doing so changes the dynamics of the relationship from a hierarchical celebrity-to-fan association to a flattened person-to-person connection. It also impressively scales the potential endorsement from a first degree reach of one-to-one to a multi-degree one-to-one-to-many social effect.
Influence: The capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behavior of someone or something, or the effect itself.
Digital influence is a controversial topic. At the heart of the matter is this idea of influence and it raises questions and doubts as to whether or not the ability to cause effect or change behavior is truly measurable. Regardless of the answer, we are introduced to a new reality of social networking, an era where our actions and words in Facebook, Twitter et al. are used for and against us.
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What follows is a guest post by Venessa Miemis…I’ve asked her to share insights from a developing research project she’s currently leading, The Future of Facebook Project. I recently took part in the project as I believe this discussion is more relevant than we currently imagine.
Happy New Year!
Twitter officially launched to the public in July 2006. By 2008, the universe of applications developed to enhance the Twitter experience was boundless. While the ecosystem was burgeoning with apps, the ability to track and manage the apps designed for specific purposes was elusive.
Of all the social networks competing for our online persona and social graph, Twitter is special. The culture and self-governing rules of engagement shaped by the “me” in social media, create a personalized experience that looks and feels less like a “social” network and instead, creates an empowering information exchange.
Brian Solis is principal at Altimeter Group, a research firm focused on disruptive technology. A digital analyst, anthropologist, and futurist, Solis has studied and influenced the effects of emerging technology on business, marketing, and culture. Solis is also globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders and published authors in new media. His new book, What's the Future of Business (WTF), explores the landscape of connected consumerism and how business and customer relationships unfold and flourish in four distinct moments of truth. His previous book, The End of Business as Usual, explores the emergence of Generation-C, a new generation of customers and employees and how businesses must adapt to reach them. Prior to End of Business, Solis released Engage, which is regarded as the industry reference guide for businesses to market, sell and service in the social web.