Creating our own History

November 19, 2009

Are we blogging or are we creating our own social history?  When we learned about history it was from our grandparents or in history books, the library was the number one place to find all this information and for the more recent generations, Google was a great way to find some broad ideas on a topic.  Our grandchildren will know it all.  Every single detail because we have been writing it for them.  Historians who have come and gone and done extensive research to get even big details are rolling over in their graves. 

Our generation is allowing years of people to come to see what our interests are, our dreams, our pictures, and our individual taste in music.  We are engraving ourselves in the World Wide Web.  Twitter allows us to let a huge audience know what we are accomplishing that day, while Facebook allows us to keep in touch with people we may not have even met.  Our day to day interactions are being permanently recorded and formatted in easily organizable segments of information. 

 Historians in the future will have every detail, no need to leave anything up for question or giving them reason to guess.  Every single detail has the opportunity and in most cases is actually recorded in full detail.  Most of our friends know who we are with and what we did last night. 

Reality T.V. has become a real hit the past few years and why not, we all love to know what is going on in everyone else’s lives.  We want to know because of a mere interest but even to use it to compare our own lives.  It is so easy to interact with people now while they are doing things.  I can join a friend at a baseball game via Facebook or wish my cousin overseas a happy birthday via Skype. 

 Twitter, Facebook and MySpace are giving us the opportunity to make friends with people we may necessarily not have the opportunity to. We are also to keep in touch with our friends from college who moved two continents away.  We are able to learn about each other’s cultures and each other’s actions.  This gives us such a great opportunity to relate and understand one another.  History is starting to have a whole new meaning!

By Kate Ksielka.  Follow me on Twitter

Twitter is dead

April 30, 2009

3291616685_9a9bf42b3b1Well, maybe not, but it sure ain’t sticky and it’s not looking like it has legs. According to this article, called “Twitter users not sticking around”, more than 60 percent of Twitter users stop using the service a month after joining. That eqautes to a 40 percent retention rate. At a similar stage, says the article, Facebook’s retention rate was twice as high. Same with MySpace. I have to say that I am one of those people who went Twitter-crazy for a month and then got tired of the limited functionality and never-ending glitchiness of the site and returned full-time to the wicked but loving arms of Facebook.

While it has some legitimate applications, on a macro level Twitter has all the makings of a fad that we’ll all laugh about fondly in a decade. Celebrity and newscaster tweeting has already become rote fodder for TV comedians. TNT basketball analyst Charles Barkley, never one to pull punches, even implied the service was pointless and annoying during an in-show commercial Tuesday promoting TNT’s Twitter accounts. Back in the day, we’d have said Twitter has jumped the shark.

From a PR and marketing perspective, that doesn’t mean we need to abandon Twitter. Quite the contrary. We need to exploit its capabilities as much as we can. But we also need to keep in mind that its influence may very well have peaked.

From my view, Facebook is a much more effective play for all but customer service applications.

Posted by Joe Paone

Social Networking Trendchasers on Safari

March 19, 2009

So assuming you might have many, many better things to do, here’s the latest newsflash from the World of Web 2.0: Facebook launched a redesign last week that no one in the user community really wanted and not surprisingly, it’s risen to become an utter fiasco. Long story short, Facebook looks more like Twitter now, which is kind of dumb because if all you wanted to do was tweet, you’d, like, go to Twitter.

Meanwhile, there’s a rising backlash/fatigue with the remarkably overexposed and over-discussed Twitter.

With Facebook, there’s a sense of betrayal from users who genuinely loved the loopy, varied functionality of the platform. With Twitter, there’s a reaction against what some see as a dumbing-down and/or trivializing of societal discourse, along with a bit of pique about the vacuous TV talking heads babbling incessantly about it.

Social media networks have lifecycles, and I’ve seen them play out before. People discover them, fall in love with them, and then one day, they move on to the next thing. I’ve seen Friendster die of neglect on the part of its ownership. I’ve seen MySpace become a garish, tacky, pushy advertising vehicle. Heck, I remember the heydays and downfalls of Usenet newsgroups (flooded with spam posts) and listservs (too navel-gazing) and forums (too much traffic, too many alpha dogs).

Has Facebook peaked? Has Twitter peaked? What’s the next big thing?

Too soon to say. But we’re keeping a jaundiced eye on it.

Posted by Joe Paone (look for me on Facebook, but only after you scroll though a gazillion gratuitous status updates)