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@abfabZ @AmyVernon @wordwhacker I believe that Susan Blackmore said in her book "The Meme Machine" that homo sapiens' unique talent compared to all other primates is our ability to imitate. Sadly Social Media is proof of that a thousand fold. While social media does encourage imitation and amplification it is not the root cause of the falsehoods. It is a human frailty known as dissembling, which is an act of both concealment and disguise. As a hiring manager I have come across many resumes that dissemble, where the owner is clearly overreaching on their capabilities in what they claim as knowledge or experience. Those false claims are often discovered in the interview process, but sometimes they escape such scrutiny and only become apparent when the selection has been made and the budget committed. Over the years I have noticed the incidents of dissembling have increased, mainly because many perpetrators have escaped scrutiny (even face to face) and imitation has followed as surely as night follows day. Just read some non-professional blog advice on how to polish your resume (though the resume is going the way of ticker tape).
The social media is a perfect environment for dissembling, concealment and disguise is after all what some might call branding (albeit deceitful). Detection is less likely on the social network and so imitation is rife. Which brings us back to the need for real life contact to at least provide one subjective layer of scrutiny.
1 year, 6 months ago on A Deeper Social Bond
You make some very pertinent points that strike at the heart of authenticity. It is not enough to turn the machine, prime the pump or show your appreciation, all of that can and probably should be considered gaming the system IF that is all that you do.
Being authentic means being real, within and beyond the cyber world. First and foremost it means being true to oneself and one's brand, although I would argue that for individuals that should be one and the same. I wholeheartedly agree that social media is but part of the equation. I would add that technology is yet an even smaller part, being just the implements we use in the social domain. The much larger part is meaningful interaction with other people, ideas and communities, all of which you so eloquently bundle in the hashtag #bevaluable.
Thanks, Abby, for taking the thoughts of @fondalo and myself and extending them in a useful and meaningful manner.
Unfortunately there are many more rewards for amplification and promotion than there are for critical thinking and good communication. Numbers, especially large numbers, are persuasive especially to those who are easily distracted and lack the patience to look beneath the covers. Thank you for bringing this to the attention of those who look for more. The social network has given birth to a new generation of mountebanks and charlatans, and like the circus ground you do well to ignore the noise and pass by the barkers.
Thanks @AnneReuss for the link to this article and to steamfeed.com - you are ever in the circle of trust.
1 year, 11 months ago on Fake Online Reviews Are Growing
@barrettrossie Appreciate the thought, but it's the question that deserves the applause. It really demands us each to think deeply on how we can contribute and participate on levels unreachable by computer algorithms. Computers can help us understand the cycles of thought and effort that algorithms can replace . They can also direct us to information, and provide synthesis and analysis from which we can generate and evolve new ideas and thoughts. We cannot sit back idly and allow computer intelligence to be our surrogate, we have to be aware of the risks and the opportunities and constantly raise the bar on our own capabilities.
1 year, 12 months ago on How Will You Adapt to Technology Replacing Humans?
@ginidietrich great question, and I am not sure I have a good answer; for the blog case you suggest we are still a long way from being able to write the algorithms to effectively analyze such content, and more importantly the context in which that content exists. We have gained some mastery of textual analysis, are beginning to find our feet on sentiment analysis based on early understanding of semantic (surface meaning) and synaptic (proximity relationship). Yet we are still unable to accurately or easily break down signs and symbols (semiotics) ideas and thoughts (memetics), all of which are needed for a thorough understanding of any given post. And not to pour too much cold water on the potential, we still have to deal with the Humpty Dumpty syndrome - "I say what I mean and I mean what I say", or to put it another way the challenge of personal language, vocabulary and definition. And we thought Electronic Data Exchange (EDI) was far from easy, and conceptually it was - now we have millions of parameters to deal with.
I am always amazed at how quickly technology can progress, and I suspect many of these requirements will be satisfied to some degree in the next decade, maybe not all but enough of them to satisfy an adequate result. My fear is that we know more and understand less, we accumulate information, but skimp on knowledge and then eschew wisdom, so the surface analysis is as far as we go.
At the end of the day any algorithm is following a script, do this to x, that to y and then do it z times over, with innumerable variations. Scripts are useful and can relieve humans from drudgery and toil, and we have increasingly used them over the years. We will, of course, continue to do so for the foreseeable future, improving them where and when we can for greater relief and more efficient use of resources. In general it is a good thing if we can accurately and effectively replace human effort with algorithms because that task, whatever it is, can only be repetitive and unlikely to change,
However life is never static and we have to deal with entropy, the force that demands change and reaction. And yes there are algorithms that do this too, as the investment world knows only too well. This is the grey area and one that demands vigilant supervision, as relinquishing authorship of new algorithms and scripts to cyber-control can have the opposite of the intended effect, burdening humankind instead of assisting it. That doesn't mean don't go there, it just suggests that when we take that path we have the knowledge and available resources to prevent and recover from any mishaps on the way.
I have to believe this is cyclic as economic buying is as old as Methusala, going back to good old bartering which is nothing other than determining the economic value of an item in the exchange of goods or property. Getting the best of the bargain has ever been the quest of both buyer and seller.
Relationship buying has similar historic roots, as evidenced by presidential or royal seals of approval in many countries around the world. There is a third approach, most commonly employed by large corporates, namely 'Strategic Buying'. In this case there is a trade of longer term commitment to a supplier's products or services in exchange for inside information on future development and capabilities. The goal of most vendors is to become either a preferred or strategic partner. The goal of most buyers is to get the most value out of the vendor over time. Furthermore strategic vendors are layered or prioritized according to their value to the business, with very few vendors at the top of the stack (ie most valuable strategic vendors) who, because of their position are often called or considered partners rather than vendors. Partners are therefor engaged for a longer term than lower layer strategic vendors.
In reality all three buying styles come into play, depending to a large degree on buying cycles and the state of the market. The longer buying cycles are more strategic, though the determining factors still trend towards overall value.
Now lets take the uncertain economic climate that currently engulfs the commercial world, particularly in the west. That uncertainty increases conservatism (at least in terms of business change and investment in development). This has a corresponding effect on strategic planning, shortening the vendor's horizon of certainty and making them less strategic with less long term value. Lacking that deeper value buyers are forced to concentrate more on short term values, most commonly price. In addition buyers will now question all their relationships (especially the long term strategic ones) as they no longer provide the expected value for which they had been engaged and retained.
I am convinced that strategic and relationship buying will increase and improve with a stronger economy and a brighter future outlook.
2 years, 1 month ago on The Games Corporate Buyers Play
Very good points on the cost of distractions, and 3 of the 4 suggestions are sensible and practicable. The only one that is questionable is the time-management software as it will depend on the business context and technical landscape to a large degree, but in the right place this could be beneficial.
However as we become more and more swept up in the social stream is it enough? Unlike the last burning platform (90s Internet), this wave is pandemic and pervasive. Above all we need education, not just in understanding the risks and opportunities of social engagement, but how to act responsibly and proactively in determining which diversions are productive as opposed to distracting. You have this covered somewhat with the email policy and the software, but surely this is about behavior and accountability and it is better to stimulate and encourage self-control than to legislate (ie through rules and policies)? Instruction can only go so far, so we have to rely on new and incisive ways to educate. In this way we can improve our critical thinking, so that when we collaborate we are contributing good signals, instead of merely amplifying the noise. The best employees will be those that see the benefit of focused application on the matter at hand, both professionally and privately.
2 years, 1 month ago on 4 Ways to Help Employees Reduce Distractions
Good questions, with two in particular that caught my attention because I had strong opinions on the matter. Let me tackle S4 first, before moving on to S6. Social is cultural behavior not a function, nor a department let alone an enterprise or business. It is a billion people finding their voice and using global infrastructures to carry their thoughts and expressions to whomever will listen, interact and collaborate. It offers unprecedented opportunities for individuals, communities, enterprises and governments to improve common wealth and common knowledge. It also promises a major game changing opportunity for marketing functions to tap the social well and improve product, service and brand awareness and loyalty. Large as that marketing opportunity is it is but the tip of the iceberg of the total wealth-producing potential of massive, mobile, agile, personal interaction.
The task of industry and its marketing departments is to optimize alignment to these opportunities, which inevitably requires internal cultures to adapt to the imperatives of emerging social behaviors. I believe this partially answers S6 . However it does not mean that external on-line involvement should wait until that alignment has been fully achieved. Since this is a behavior it is critical to experience the social culture, sense it, and live rather than plan and execute according to theory alone. Like any planning function it is improved by cyclical review especially if real tangible experience is part of the input.
2 years, 3 months ago on Which is Social? The Customer or the Business?
@samfiorella @lttlewys I like your idea of the home community, and think it should be part of an enterprise social media portfolio - in other words make it easy to find participants and just as easy to be found. It could be one of several communities administered by the enterprise and, as Sam, put it the Home Base, thus allowing the more transient communities to age appropriate to their purpose.
2 years, 4 months ago on Brand Communities – Your Sandbox or Mine?
Great article, Tonia, as you capture the essence of #SeeSaw in it being a visual conduit to Social Media activity, which includes trending and information passed through image (not just the text). (By the way I really like @annereuss suggestion of augmenting her communications with images of her facial expressions). That conduit is also extremely practical for curation, as you pointed out, and overcomes one of the hurdles of curation in the live stream. Previously you had to expand any link to determine whether it had value or not, #Seesaw provides a powerful shortcut. The Saw board can be your curated site, or, as I suspect many others will do, a feed and link to your other curation sites such as @Pinterest or @Pearltrees.
2 years, 4 months ago on Is SeeSaw the New Pinterest for Twitter?
@samfiorella Fully agree - and the more community information is standardized and publicly available (eg directories of interest/contribution/influence) the cheaper and more effective it will be to engage in the non-owned communities.
@samfiorella this only emphasizes the validity of your approach as did @angels510 - communities are typically fluid so it is better to maintain directories and relevancy maps rather than create "owned" brand communities a go with the flow rather than trying to sustain the life of a dying community. We might even be able to collaborate on building an open directory and mapping service but I haven't reached that level of optimism yet.
The reason I see this being similar effort is that enterprises will need to maintain directories of communities, especially if they have multiple brands, and/or they want to build task centered groups for specific collaborations.
I agree with the concept of brands not building fields for customer to come, and totally agree that it is more efficient and possibly effective to reach out to existing communities, and in doing so establishing virtual communities for the brand that overlay the existing ones. However your points on the cost of planning and the obligation to perform diligent maintenance remains the same for both models. Of course I prefer the latter for many reasons.
While personalized email will diminish (alas broadcast email not so much), the door opening introduction will always find more favor with email than social media. E-mail allows you to polish that introduction and use an eloquence and directness that social media compromises. Good advice (as is Ted Rubins personalized follow-up).
2 years, 4 months ago on Read This, Before Email Completely Disappears