The Web has been great for sharing knowledge but therein lies a problem for me. Knowledge is not static, knowledge is not singular, knowledge is not permanent and that is why I feel social media has been an even greater contributor to knowledge.
Let me explain this random thinking!
There is a difference between thinking that the Internet is the knowledge and being the pathway to knowledge.
If you just take Wikipedia as an example - entries are constantly changing, facts are evolving, different views on one subject are linked to by an article.
Social media is my pathway to a greater knowledge - both as a person and in terms of business as a consumer.
When social media is done well by brands, I believe they see it as a pathway not as a source of knowledge.
- That is why people refer to it as conversational marketing,
- That is why it works best when it is two way,
- That is why social media is not about just sharing information that you know...but sharing and collecting ideas that WE know.
- That is why demanding to be seen as the expert is not taken well - as even an expert can learn more!
People used to fear the Internet and the web - people often refer to Google making us stupid however I argue that the Web won't make us anything. It is us as individuals, as brands, as consumers, as suppliers that will decide that by how we choose to use the social web and for me there is a distinct choice
- Use it as THE knowledge and a way of showing your undisuptable brilliance or
- See it as a pathway..a conversation...to an even greater shared knowledge
I know which approach I like to read on the social web....I know that the second option engages me because it respects me as a human being.
When you portray brilliance then you invite the criticism that you can't control...when you share knowledge and listen...then you don't need to control, you are part of the unearthing of an even better knowledge, created together.