Social Media project has failed

by Laurent François

15 years ago, we said that the web could be this fantastic playground in which social relationships among people could free their souls & projects. A place in with the wisdom of crowds could help us shape all the criteria of success to optimize our daily lives, moreoever for our children.

Well, this project has to a certain extent failed.

4 pessimistic reasons, all linked to the building of an history (in French; “historicité”), to confirm this idea

  • the access to archives of conversations is dramatically complicated for any citizen. Here and there, you can find digital footprints, for instance in 90s-newsgroups. Nonetheless, in the 90s, the social web has first been developped on economical reasons, not through vertuous ones. During this decade, we should have implemented “curators” in order to organise the web. Some might say that thanks to monitoring solutions, it’s now possible to follow insights through the time. Maybe. But how many solutions keep more than 6 months of conversations? Very few, as this effort has a huge cost. Congrats to all the universitarians and people trying to build these histories. But we’ve lost decades.
  • How many articles, written by professionals (press, thinkers etc.) link to the past? How many media now do have the capabilities to produce long-term files? Not a lot. There should be people dedicated to these objectifs within their organizations; the problem is that the business model was not made on that but on fast news. Once again, we’ve lost decades
  • How many new ideas have been propagated on stage, in front of a huge mass of people? This nice democratic idea in which a topic or a guy could be elected by chance, and that could have an impact, a debate? In real life, you can be picked in a jury, for law. In Social Media, it’s rare to find people promoting by pure chance new talents or ideas. Actors’ strategy…Decades lost
  • How many iconoclast ideas have been perennial, in political fields, for instance? How many of them did pass the very conservative filters, even when they seem to be “cool”?

The Social Media project has to a certain extent failed: it’s now time to go back to sense & goals; in order to not only ask ourselves “who benefits from crime ?” but “why do we communicated?”.



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