Six Pixels of Separation - The Blog
March 25, 2011 8:01 PM

The Future Of The Web May Not Be Social

...and why I hope I'm wrong.

That was the topic of my TEDx talk that took place in Montreal on February 19th, 2011...

By Mitch Joel


Comments Comments Feed
  • Posted by Bill Laidlaw
    Mitch Joel

    Apparent stream of conscious once again?
    Maybe better than any time I have paid to here you keynote.
    Thanks Mitch.p

    Reply
  • Posted by Karen
    Mitch Joel

    Very thought provoking Mitch. I really like the phrase "platforms and techologies are agnostic". You said it so well - nothing is good or bad - it is how we use it.

    Reply
  • Posted by George Williams
    Mitch Joel

    Once again Mitch, thanks for making us think.

    I don't think you can stop the online social juggernaut now. I think in the future we will see a global social network that continues to evolve, adjust and grow based on the combined thoughts and actions of its network nodes (people) and their different types of connections – regardless of platform. What form this will take two years from now is difficult (but not entirely impossible) to predict.

    Current major social platforms like Facebook and Twitter may not be part of the future, but working pieces of those platforms will be. And eventually, those pieces will help to facilitate the formation of a network that will be monetized in a way that is acceptable to the people who make it up. Very simply, the network will allow for monetization equal to the value it provides to its members.

    Selling data that people don't want sold and showing people ads they don't want to see may be the price of membership on some platforms right now, but it is not the future. I have some further thoughts on that, but this is probably not the place for an essay. I’d rather just say…

    Keep up the great work! Enjoyed this!

    Reply
  • Posted by Avinash Kaushik
    Mitch Joel

    Really great talk Mitch.

    It is interesting to be a part of this evolution of whatever we live in to whatever it will become. And there is no one quite like you to outline it for us.

    Bravo!

    -Avinash.

    Reply
  • Posted by Tobey Deys
    Mitch Joel

    Very insightful, Mitch, thank you.

    Interesting that you highlight how, inherently, we default to a position of privacy. I would agree (as an introvert, I tend to observe first and engage later, when or if I'm comfortable). Social media is for me, and many like me, the perfect medium to become more social. The social media 'wall' is translucent; what stops me from fully engaging in a room full of people is removed in the social media universe. I can open my blinds and communicate with those I never would have thought to approach 'in real life'.

    I hope many people take the time to watch this; you've offered important revelations around how this community, at large, can ensure the continuity of social media.

    Reply
    • Posted by Karen
      Mitch Joel

      Well said Tobey. I am similar. I default to the maximum privacy where possible, but I absolutely embrace the opportunity to interact with people who I probably would never have crossed paths with otherwise.
      It is an interesting time to observe, and participate in, the evolution of these tools.

      Reply
  • Posted by Joseph Ratliff
    Mitch Joel

    I believe we are in fact at a crossroads where the "splintering" you speak of will begin to happen Mitch.

    There's the "privacy" camp, the "it's ok to use my info camp" etc...

    But I also believe that the web tools currently available (Facebook, Twitter, etc...) have given us 2 things as a human race something we haven't had in awhile:

    1) Connection across boundaries.

    2) Control of the media we consume and share.

    It is these 2 things that will contribute to the future web being very social.

    Inspiring talk Mitch.

    Reply
    • Posted by Rob Cubbon
      Mitch Joel

      Really interesting talk, Mitch, and I really agree with your comment, Joseph. Mitch has a good point when he talks of potentially people having an anonymous character as well as a correctly named one. And your "definition" of the new benefits of social media, Joseph, is great.

      Reply
  • Posted by Charles Baratta
    Mitch Joel

    Great video Mitch! I understand what kind of disaster will happen if the internet privacy does not work well. Because social media like facebook is free we just don't have the right to demand the type privacy that we want. That's why I don't provide much information as much as possible because right from the start I know how vulnerable the web can be.

    Reply
  • Posted by Nichole Trobare
    Mitch Joel

    Fascinating talk! It really resonated with me.

    I am inclined to believe that the web will always be social, that is just how we humans are. Without it we are not really ourselves.

    From the humble beginnings of email to the IRC chat channels, to message boards, to social networks, to the future of the web - it will evolve and we shall keep riding the wave towards the unknown.

    I for one am excited to see what’s next. Getting everyone else around me comfortable enough to just let go and see where we go is something I struggle with daily in the corporate world.

    Reply
  • Mitch Joel

    I just wanna say I found this blog from a top 10 list and I'm glad I did. Mitch, your content is awesome on so many levels.

    Great talk by the way! Amazing how you timed it out perfect at 20 mins!

    I look forward to more great content from you. Take care!

    Reply
  • Posted by John Chew
    Mitch Joel

    I listened to your podcast religiously, and found your TED talk highly informative and thought provoking.

    Reply
  • Mitch Joel

    I am very interested in this topic as it relates to the brain--how are we defining social? If you read or listen to David Brooks Social Animal, http://bit.ly/frP2a5 you see we are truly social animals. Will this our platforms/technologies (agnostic or not) get in the way of that natural inclination? How can we better set up our personal and technology filtering systems to allow output where we want it? Many of us are "second, third and fourth screening" in everything we do (TV+smartphone+iPad+computer.) As we divvy up our attention-it has an impact on our processing (ref my blog post http://bit.ly/eDRqT50 )
    What will social look like when it is slivered up into such tiny partial slices that we resist turning off since it feeds a need? Our brains get somewhat addicted to the stimulus. Would love to hear more on how you are defining social today and tomorrow for you child for example.

    Reply
  • Posted by Amber Turnau
    Mitch Joel

    Take away quote: "You can be credible and anonymous." This is a very relevant point. I sat in on the SXSW Interactive keynote by 4Chan founder Christopher Poole and he has a similar view. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
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