There’s a slide from a keynote I did three years ago that compared the Wikipedia definitions for the terms Web 2.0 and Social Media. Three years ago what was interesting to me was that the definitions for each centered on the human interactions of sharing and idea exchange (discussion and collaboration) and the change I noted then was that the terminology had merely changed. Web 2.0 had moved mainstream enough, that people needed a less geeky (& more meaningful) moniker to call it by.
But tonight, in updating my slides for my DMSW talk tomorrow, I discovered something much more interesting and I might add slightly disturbing. Take a look at the opening definition of social media now.* It’s no longer centered on human connections and conversation. The definition has taken on a definitive marketing slant and touts sm as the use of technologies to "transform broadcast media monologues (one to many) into social media dialogues (many to many)." Yup, simply put, it seems that Social Media = Social Marketing.
Anyway, here’s my updated slide with a new comparison of the definitions.
I labeled this image file "scary.jpg" What do you think? Do you agree?
* Wikipedia editors note that this article has multiple issues including references, validation and slants towards personal reflection. There's definitely a lot of discussion on this topic and it's easy to see why.
It seems that a month doesn’t go by that I don’t get an email asking me about a survey, study or research that demonstrates the impact of the Learning 2.0: 23 Things program. Up until now, I’ve only really had a few resources to point them to, including my own survey of program coordinators. But thanks to the research of Michael Stephens and the folks at CAVAL, there is now something more substantial.