Why people prefer social media than the real contact?
Last night’s meeting of Social Media Club Phoenix veered off into a very interesting direction. During the introductions around the room, one of the attendees said that he wondered if social media were actually dehumanizing, filtering communication and removing it from the realm of face-to-face. The facilitator allowed the discussion to come back to that question, even though the “agenda” was about the various tools of social media.
There were some very vociferous opinions about the dehumanizing qualities of, say, online gaming or social networks, as opposed to the humanizing qualities of blogs, shared content, and shared information. No conclusion could be drawn, obviously, but the question attracted quite a bit of discussion.
Squidoo came up in the discussion as a collaborative, unifying force, as did Utube.
I gave my usual example of sharing the information about my hip replacement in a blog and another attendee asked how people on the Internet were to judge which information was credible on a site or social network consisting of, for example, people trying to get off anti-depressants.
I think the reason so many issues of credibility, rather than technology, came up is that our participants are about half social media experts and half people there to learn. While that strikes me as an ideal situation, it’s very difficult to facilitate so that everyone comes out with some value! Those of us who are engaged in producing and using social media every day often forget how the world at large feels about us 🙂