Thought: Are social networks constrained by our vanity?

allaboutmeThe social web, and especially blogging, is all about the self; we are vain and narcissistic, we have opinions and demand they be heard.

Whether it is number of followers, Klout score or having our name attached to posts we crave validation.

Topic v individual

Do services like Medium, where the focus is on the topic rather than the individual, have a chance of widespread success? Will vanity preclude many from adopting such a service out of a fear of becoming lost? Or will topic based networks allow users to find a voice among like-minded individuals?

In our social networks we can save a search and they may even update in real-time but we cannot follow them as we follow an individual, they cannot be added to our primary feed. Emphasis is placed on following a person and not a topic in order to satisfy our need for connection but with an ever-increasing number of users is this a sustainable way to interact?

Are we ready to forgo the self?

Update

Why not check out the follow up post: Social media and the needs of the self.

Image by TxPilot

  1. Will B. says: #
    Social networks are to human socialisation what industrial processed foods are to human feeding: It's possible to use them to have a healthy balance of meeting one's need, but to satisfy the commercial interest of the manufacturers/service providers, they are naturally going to be heavy on the stuff that we crave, stuff that is not necessarily good for us: https://plus.google.com/u/0/100880996015851205201/posts/FjVGbbWcap1

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.