Growing up or losing the plot?

Last week I was scanning down my Facebook page when I can across this:


This resonated hugely with me and has kept me thinking and smiling for most of the week. Now there are many aspects of this seemingly simple picture that I could blog about for hours and hours (and I suspect that it would be a sedative to rival Temazepam!) However I wanted to rattle on for a little about the massive networks -> massive relationships leap.

networkI have long despised the word “network” and the “old school” language comparing people to some sort Tron- esque world full of “nodes” and “pathways” and when this is then applied to the warm world that is social media I do start to feel a little cross. I feel that not only does the word network feel so cold and wrong in relation to social media but it also feels so two dimensional. Social media is a means of communication that we have never see the like of before…… so please indulge me a little longer and imagine this, for just a moment ……

spaceImagine if communication no longer felt linear or two dimensional as it does with the use of nodes and networks but instead gives us the amazing ability to launch ourselves into the stratosphere and beyond ….. into the openness that is space itself. Imagine we are floating around in this vast space and imagine communication being not two way but every which way – ideas, knowledge, relationships, and experiences can find us directly from any given point irrespective not only of geography and hierarchy but also of social, economic and political standing. And whats more we can also find ideas, knowledge, relationships and experiences. We find people we would have never come across even if we have traversed the world looking and trying and we develop relationships and (dare I say it) communities with people we have never met. This ability to float in space and be “out there” and approachable from any angle is getting closer to the way communication via social media feels to me.

einsteinSo what does all this mean? It could mean that I have totally lost the plot but as Einstein said “The true sign of intelligence is not knowledge but imagination” With the ability to close our eyes and imagine communication beyond the language of the linear, the nodes, the pathways and the networks we can start to understand and use social media to its full potential. Social media is growing up, old theories, though we may learn from them, need new thought and new perspective. To understand this new grown up social media we need to think xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxa little beyond two dimensional language and dip our toes into this 3D xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxspace.