Sounds like the kind of bold assertion I might have made, back when the sides of my head were shaved, the top was painted blue and I was filled with the kind of rage that only comes when you are dead certain that you are absolutely right and the rest of the world JUST DOESN’T GET IT!!
Just on the periphery of the media’s vision, the true citizen journalism has been growing and incubating – that much-desired "conversation" between the reporter and audience, where one is quite often the other, or both, depending on how the mood strikes … it’s like the Purloined Letter. The answers are hiding in plain sight and they’re on MySpace.
Danah Boyd coined the word: "glocalization" to describe this New Media phenomenon of the moment. She talks about Craigslist, Flickr and MySpace – and finds the common threads that these diverse sites share:
These three sites have many attributes in common. They all grew organically.
They each have public personalities that early adopters feel connected to. The
early adopters really felt as though they were participating in and creating an
intimate community, even as the community grew to millions. Users are
passionate. Designers are passionate. They feel a responsibility to it and are
deeply invested in making users happy. Character was not boiled out of the site;
the text on the system is natural and goofy, reflecting the personality quirks
of the developers rather than the formal speech of a corporation. Each site has
a unique culture that was born early on and evolved through years of use and
growth. The culture evolves with the designers and users working in tandem.
Customer service is not a segregated group who simply answers questions of a
finalized product. They are completely integrated into the design system and the
senior people are the most deeply embedded in user culture. There is a strong
commitment to the needs and desires of the users.
While the creators have visions of what they think would be cool, they do not
construct unmovable roadmaps well into the future. They are constantly reacting
to what’s going on, adding new features as needed. The code on these sites
changes constantly, not just once a quarter. The designers try out features and
watch how they get used. If no one is interested, that’s fine – they’ll just
make something new. They are all deeply in touch with what people are actually
doing, why and how it manifests itself on the site.
This idea that the counterintuitive is true with the younger users fits in nicely with what I found in my mini-research groups about EP3 (see this).
I am reminded of the line from Jurassic Park – you can’t think your way through this thing. You have to feel it.