Saturday, January 30, 2010

Protect yourself with a decent password.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Social Media is More Social Than Media

Some people push back on the latest thing because they don't like new things. It doesn't matter if the new thing is a cell phone or an automobile or any other proven technology: If it's new, it's eww :-(. These value routine over novelty.

All people engage with Dunbar's number (150 person capacity in your network) differently as they get older.

The reason why social media is so popular with students is that they have:

  • the highest need for social connection (while in college)
  • the most disposable time
  • and the lowest committed slots in their Dunbar relationship capacity.

As we get older, we commit to certain people to be in our relational bandwidth (e.g. spouse, kids, friends, colleagues). This lowers the number of open slots in our Dunbar capacity (150 people).

Also, this higher level of commitment to certain people means more time spent with these people and therefore less disposable time spent on "new" things.

Also, this investment in relationship with some means less time for "new" relations.

Because of this, regardless of a person's views on social media or technology, the older we get the less inclined we are to anything that will connect us with "new" people to add to our personal social network.

So why am I such a big fan of social media? Because it enhances the network of relationships I ALREADY HAVE. This is usually what causes people to embrace new technology; it enhances their connection with those already in their Dunbar network.
So, every person (practically) has a cell phone. Why? Because it allows us to connect with everyone we are ALREADY committed to. Parents of teenagers are often more savvy with texting than people 25-35 because they use texting to connect with their kids.

This example of an "older" generation embracing a new technology illustrates the principle: social media is relevant to our current social network needs.

Since the character and needs of our current social network change over time, the relevance and usefulness of various social media tools will change as well.

People will embrace social media when they see how it will help them be better parents, spouses, friends, servants and professionals.

So I try to figure out how to help people envision how social media will enhance their current relationships and major on that when talking about social media.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Some speech is more free than others?

Censorship Inc. - "'The majority is deeply wrong on the law,' according to a critic of yesterday's U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United v. FEC . 'Most wrongheaded of all is its insistence that corporations are just like people and entitled to the same First Amendment rights. It is an odd claim since companies are creations of the state that exist to make money.'

Whose opinion is this? We don't know exactly, because it is not attributed to any individual. It is an unsigned editorial in the New York Times. That is to say, it reflects the collective opinion of the Times editorial board, a division of the New York Times Co., a corporation that exists to make money.

It's lucky for the New York Times Co. that the Supreme Court upheld its First Amendment rights. Otherwise, it could not have exercised its First Amendment right to denounce the court for upholding its First Amendment rights. Right?

Not quite. As Justice Anthony Kennedy noted in his opinion, the McCain-Feingold 'campaign finance' law--which until yesterday's ruling made it a felony for corporations to engage in certain political speech--exempted 'media companies' like the New York Times Co. (and News Corp., publisher of The Wall Street Journal and this Web site) from this restriction.

McCain-Feingold, in other words, granted a small group of companies, including the New York Times Co., the privilege to speak freely about politics, while denying it to all other corporations--not only 'companies . . . that exist to make money,' but also taxable nonprofits that exist to represent a point of view, including the advocacy arms of the Sierra Club, the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Rifle Association.

The editorial published by the New York Times Co. includes no mention of the special privilege the New York Times Co. enjoyed under McCain-Feingold--a privilege that creates at least the appearance of a journalistic conflict of interest. Is not the failure to disclose the New York Times Co.'s interest in McCain-Feingold a serious violation of journalistic ethics?

The Times's opinion is wrongheaded as well. Under the paper's cramped view of the First Amendment, the privilege the New York Times Co. enjoyed under McCain-Feingold was just that: a privilege, not a right. The First Amendment does not say 'Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech of media corporations.' If the Constitution doesn't protect corporations, it doesn't protect the New York Times Co. And if Congress had the power to grant an exemption to media companies, it also had the power to take it away.

As Justice Clarence Thomas noted in McConnell v. FEC (2003), such reasoning would permit 'outright regulation of the press.' Some on the far left, complaining about 'corporate domination' of the media, would like to see just that.

In past generations, the New York Times Co. had a proud tradition as a defender of free expression. It was the prevailing litigant in two landmark Supreme Court cases expanding and vindicating First Amendment rights, New York Times Co. v. Sullivan (1964) and New York Times Co. v. U.S. (1971). The former case, by the way, involved a political advertisement.

What a shame it is to see a once-great media corporation become a fair-weather friend of free expression."

Thursday, January 07, 2010

So Happy Together

My daughter told me they are reading Walden by Thoreau in her English class. They talked about his emphasis on solitude and the statement that the four necessities of life are food, shelter, clothing, and fuel.

This comes to mind:

1 John 1:3-4 3 that which we have seen and heard [the Gospel] we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4 And we are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.

Revelation 21:3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.

Community is a big part of being a Christ follower. In fact, because God is a community (Father, Son, Holy Spirit), fellowship is more basic to the universe than any of Thoreau's necessities.

Interesting Stuff