Five years later…

5 I first posted here five years ago, on a day that probably looked just like today in Boston.

That was before Twitter, when I used an email to join Facebook, and clients were a lot more interested in paying for email marketing advice than discussing social media.

Today, it feels that blogging has come and gone, attention and influence have gravitated to a few key social media platforms, and clients are starting to wake up to the potential of social business.

The early rockstars were the techies, the ones who were close to the innovation as told us about it as it emerged. Today’s rockstars are the ones who are closest to creating business value, who’ve learned how to monetize “social’s” potential through experience.

Mainstream and social media have shifted from separation to integration, mostly for better, sometimes for worse. Information flows more freely and faster than ever, but sometimes the velocity lacks veracity.

So, as this social media/technology/business era plays out…are we better off? You tell me…

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  1. “Are we better off?” is a timeless question.
    Five years is a lot in the technology world, but changing how a business thinks, works and is organized can take much more than that. Most businesses–leaving the tech industry echo chamber–are just barely recognizing the need let alone progressing towards social business. So it’s still early to talk about are we better off.

    On the other hand, outside the company in the area of democracy, we definitely have a great deal more of it. Enough that governments are starting to include plans to manage, control or limit political conversation. From a human rights perspective, those who can afford the technology are better off. The good thing is that they’re often applying it in situations that benefits those who cannot afford it.

  2. Great points, Rawn. The lag is apparent in business and I agree that the verdict is still out. Lots of promise and potential, but lots of work left to be done.

    Opportunity has definitely emerged with uneven distribution; filtering by income and ethnicity exposes gaps that we’ll need to solve for both in our business models and within society at large.

  3. As an optimist I would say yes but that’s debatable of course. But one thing that’s not debatable is that we’re better off for your continued participation in the blogosphere. Congrats on 5 years.

  4. I’m seeing plenty of maturing – but still a lot of hype. With a new generation of workers now beginning to wash through businesses (with the retirement of the Baby Boomers), I’m expecting an acceleration of change. This won’t always be for the better. But if “social” has taught be anything – it’s about being open to change and its possibilities.

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