I’ve been trying to get this quote right from memory for a bit and have just given in and Wikipedia’d it. Apparently it is from George Santayana.
It has been on my mind for a few days.
At the talk I gave last week at #somesw I made the case that the whole world of digital communications and social media is still in its infancy as it is only six years old in the way most people view it.
That said I do think that if you are going to be a professional in this space you need to understand that the digital world did not explode fully formed with the birth of Facebook and Twitter.
I know I’ve been around a while but I was slightly horrified that nobody at this event had heard of Friendster. It might just be the History undergraduate in me but I strongly believe in the idea that you need to understand what has come before so that you can be prepared for what comes next.
The rise of Facebook is put in context by the rise and falls of Friendster and MySpace. Twitter wouldn’t be the same if it hadn’t had to compete with Pownce & Jaiku in the early days.
I’m not sure anyone would have thought it was even worth exploring if it hadn’t had been for the ‘Cluetrain Manifesto’ (not to mention ‘Naked Conversations’ a little later). These books and their authors pretty much created the concept of social media marketing and communications. The theories and philosophies remain something to strive for even if at times they feel like a part of the ‘web we lost’.
Plus this doesn’t even go in to the power of blogging in those early days and how that seems to be coming full circle. Things like LiveJournal were stalking horses for the changes to come – and flamed out in a manner that shouldn’t be forgotten.
There is every chance I am just becoming that grumpy old guy. Preferring to look back than forward. Mike suggested that is the nature of this space.
— Mike (@mikedunn) October 23, 2013
Maybe it is like sharks – always moving forward (is that even true?).
Anyway I am going to listen to my wireless and have a Horlicks.
As Phil has reminded me it was actually this earlier conversation that inspired much of this post – but like I said I am old and I forget things (even if my subconscious does not!)
@jukesie both job titles which are post cluetrain. those who do not read the cluetrain are doomed to rewrite it.
— Phil Wilson (@pip) October 20, 2013