Archive for June, 2009

First Summer, than election in Norway

Posted in Web 2.0 with tags on June 28, 2009 by Geir Stene

Election box

It’s summer in Norway, and very nice weather these days. The media was occupied with the Iran election, and all of a sudden Michael Jackson died…

Next upcoming event will be the election in Norway. Not an important event in the world, and maybe not important in Norway either? But will it be an important event for social media in Norway?

One subject that’s bound to be discussed is the political parties in Norway’s usage of social media. What they did, what impact it had. One question that will be on everybody’s tongue will be; Did some, or any, learn and have a success like Obama?

It’s a boring question, because the answer is given; NO. The reason is as simple, The politics in Norway isn’t in a similar state as it was in the US. We do not have anything like a “Bush administration”.  We do not have any real need for change as the Americans felt in the population of Norway. Thirdly no political party in Norway are using anything close to the percentage of energy ( money, time, staff) in the area of social media.

But still it will be interesting to watch, for us Norwegians. We have a very high penetration of broadband, high percentages have a profile in e.g. facebook, and a lot of political parties do have (it seems) a strategy ready for using social media as one of their channels.

Does it seem like they have grasped some essence of what social media is about? I’m not sure. It looks like not. Mostly the various parties uses social media as a old fasioned Push channel. If that is their involvement, it’s likely that their effort will be worth little, or nothing at all.

As for the Obama campaign, social media didn’t play such an important role as we sometimes like to claim. Mostly it was an e mail campaign  – ergo more of a e- dialogue /e- marketing campaign, not so much a social media campaign. In addition the Obama campaign, took analytics very serious. What gives results? This is know- how from old fashioned Direct mailing. Maybe Political parties in Norway should spend more money on this ?

If political parties wants to get results in activities i social media, I believe it’s important to have the core goals in mind. And that is NOT winning the election. It’s providing the population with better public services! This is interesting, because I do believe that this is something social media and politics really have something in common! It seems like one still focus on sending the message, not listening to the messages coming back, and at all not giving a feedback of the dialog people are willing to invest.

Social media, as I see it seems to be very strong in some aspects;  
1 Spreading information wide and fast
2 Creating an arena for a producing and spreading knowledge
3 Creating an arena  where processes of mass creativity and innovation can take place in a very rapid cycle.

All of above seems to me t be a perfect environment for political activity. But I do wonder if the Norwegian political parties are able to handle this, during summer and fall in Norway.


Iran and Twitter or social media?

Posted in 1, Community, innovation, IT and communication on June 20, 2009 by Geir Stene

Just now, there are very important events in Iran. This isn’t a social media event going on , it’s real life. People are dying in Iran.That is also a fact in  Africa, Europe, Asia, the US and Australia without twitter peoples being occupied with it, people are dying daily due to various forms of injustice. What  this has to do with social media? could be a very arbitrary connection, only interesting for the very few in the world?

I cannot help myself but  thinking that  what the work of social entrepreneurs like Charles Leadbeater discuss  is very important in the discussion of what social media is about. In the subject of Iran these days, it’s just damn important to be awake.  That doesn’t make any other unjust topic in the world less. It’s just another example of how we people are, we are social, we interact. The ways in which we do so is irregular, it simply doesn’t make sense. Logically we should have been as concerned with any other conflict, deaths and problematic aspects in the world, but we don’t. The murders in Darfour didn’t get as much attentions as the Palestine / Israel conflict.

What does this has to do with my blog topic? Internet, innovations and so forth? Quite a lot. There’s no reason for having a industry, like internet, unless it’s connected to “the world” internet as itself have no value. Social media, has no value in itself.  It’s said that (just these recent days) Twitter has an impact on the Iranian news topic. And it just might have on the result but there is some “but’s” . I believe there will be written long white papers on the subject, and I might be one of them doing so. The social engagement is of importance, twitter itself  isn’t.  

This is not a blog posting on pro/con either the one , nor the other one topic, the examples above shows that very important topics find their way into “social media” a last example is terrifying, in Norway ;a young girl had  a horrifying traffic accident these  days, she might live after this, as we know from the media at this date. At facebook it emerge “hate groups”  that attack the drivers involved.(for now, no-one kan know the facts, nevertheless as “social individuals” we tend to “want” a conclution fast)  Social media can also be used to create a mob. Just mind you, yourself and what’s going on. Social media, seen from an innovation standpoint, and IT viewpoint isn’t  all that easy. It’s social, in all it’s effect, that means it also creates e-g- a mob.

In the topic of ongoing serious politics, Iran it’s great , some of ous are able to speak out – on (what ever) now shown by twitter ,  by the way, twitter didn’t know, nor wish for this effect, facebook didn’t expect their community used for creating a mob. The very reason for all of this is that the focus seems to have been on the “media” part of social media – not the “social” part of social media, such as facebook or twitter. Again i’de like all of you wanting to understand what sicial media is about to read the basics; Bordieu, Facault and so fort

Did I make myself clear or not? (knowing that there’s a pile of topics in this one posting…)