It's Not About The Technology, People!


Yesterday I had the pleasure of meeting with a developer, who shared his thoughts on the key to a successful social platform — the people.

An hour ago, Chris Brogan posted a product review on Google Plus that reiterated the message. Unfortunately, the product missed the part about the people, in Chris’ opinion.

Social media (emphasis on social rather than media) is not about technology, really. I wonder that “experts” go on and on about what it takes to be successful in what is often referred to as “the wild west” of social. The app or social media platform with the tricked up features can die a quiet death if it doesn’t constantly priorities the human factor in it’s equation.

So what’s the answer? The point is, we don’t have it. The people, the community — they are the ones with the answers. The platforms and businesses that are willing to listen, who can embrace ambiguity and not have a set solution coming out of the box, who are willing to share the creation process with others and allow the technology to be “of the people” will thrive.

“User-generated” is not just about content but about functionality, design, and purpose. Note that @replies and retweets, two of the best features of Twitter were user-generated.

I happened to read Jeff Pulver’s post on Discovering and Finding Meaning in which he says, “You now have people who never realized that they had the power to influence and to do, who are.”

When technology supports people’s design to influence their world, that’s success.

photo credit: stock xchng

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