This is what some captain of industry is meant to have said when asked if he used Facebook.
I must be getting old. I’ve heard this precise phrase twice before. The first time, it was in the mid 1980s and the question was about PCs. The next time around, it was in the early 1990s and the question was about e-mail.
Would you like to bet against social networks becoming as normal and ubiquitous and “essential” as the PC and e-mail? Your call.
You may not think Facebook is the answer. Fair enough. But please think hard before you dismiss anything that represents the following:
- a large and growing community, albeit virtual
- one that empowers people
- one that allows those people to form and re-form groups and subgroups at will
- one that facilitates conversation between those people while keeping them informed
The last point, about the Siamese-Twin communications nature of stuff like Facebook, is something I need to think harder about. I think something special happens when you can converse and be kept informed at the same time. That’s what Bloomberg discovered.
My thanks to Usable Interfaces for reminding me of the FT article and the closing line. I’d seen it and then forgotten about it. These things happen.