Our Viral Web

Steve Wheeler, Learning with 'e's, Jan 18, 2011
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I agree with Steve Wheeler when he says, "I don't believe we have even begun to tap into the true potential of social media yet." As he explains, "As more and more people connect with each other in different ways... we are going to see some extraordinary things happening, socially, culturally and politically." But what he describes here is an extension of old media, not the influence of new media. It is not significant that some Twitter comment or YouTube video becomes a mass meme, accelerated by traditional media. Social media, properly so-called, is not about mass. I think the real changes when everybody is talking about different things, not when they who world is talking about the same things.
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