Sunday, April 10, 2011

"The Era of Now": Affecting Types of Social Media

This week I am focusing on chapters 12 through 18 of Engage! by Brian Solis. The section that I found particularly interesting regarded the concept of information finding you rather than you having to go and fetch it yourself. Solis brings in the concept that "The era of 'now' is fueling new media," and by this he is asserting that because we are being more and more conditioned to expect instantaneous news or information, social media sites are becoming more equipped to give it to us. It only makes sense that social media/networking sites would be the place to go for such "now" information. Solis' idea of the "statusphere" makes this "now" information structure between people and social media more concrete because it allows for people to post information as they see fit as often as they might like and in addition it is available to everyone-there is a WARNING label associated with this though and that is by all mean not everything posted is going to be relevant or even true. Overall though the concept is in place that information is at our hands and is only going to become more so.

While I was reading this I was reminded of an article that I posted about earlier this week concerning the Department of Homeland Security and their steps to make alert systems more accessible to the general public. Through various types of social media information is readily available at our fingertips. The Department of Homeland Security, if you didn't read the post (which you should), is eliminating their color-coded security alert system which I'm sure we are all aware of when it comes to flying and are implementing a system that alerts people via posts on Facebook and Twitter.

In addition, in class we've discussed that concept pretty thoroughly when it comes to PR. Basically social media allows for companies to collect data on itself or clients without having to go out and search for it. Sites like Google Reader or Yahoo Pipes will do all the work and all you have to do is sit back and wait for the information to flow in. The "now" era has provided us with the capability to get information with ease and this is only going to continue to progress in the future.

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