Tuesday, 09 August 2011

You're on facebook, you're on twitter. So you probably had your part of the discussion during your family outings, around the christmas tree or any other offspring gettogether, about the unbearable lightness of the social media. Because, 'of course, twitter is to show how cool you are'. 'I'm not on facebook because people have no business in what I do'.


And yes, from time to time, twitter is a bit like Mcdonalds. You want to go, but after your meal you feel sorry you've been there. (I never understood why they're not serving any heavy digestives, by the way. But that's another story. Back to twitter.)


Of course, twitter is the new afternoon TV sales channel. Of course, twitter-egos seek instant twitterfame. Hell, if the word ephemeral didn't exist, it would have been invented because of facebook and twitter.


But it's so much more than that. It's a whole new ball game in your anthropological study. A virtual plunge into the human soul of the 21st century. It can be a speedy way into events that are occuring, be it a football game or the recent London riots. It's a virtual travel tool, a bonfire sing-along, a newsroom. Sometimes it even turns into a courthouse - complete with sentences even before any trial took place.


And sometimes, it shows a glance of the good in human nature. The naive part, the playful part, or the collaborative effort part. The UpWithPeople part: Together, we can make a difference, that sort of thing.


After the flashmob, meet the flashmop.


It's that engaging part that makes it interesting. Therefor, as an example, start following @Riotcleanup. And when in London, leave your computer, take a mop and hit the streets.


Jan Van Mol


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