Hello Goodbye

the-beatles

I don’t know why you say goodbye; I say hello. I think the Beatles were on to something here… The semester may be ending, but that doesn’t mean it’s the end of #IS6621! What we’ve learned in the past few months, what we’ve discussed and researched, what we’ve tweeted and blogged about, what we’ve shared; it’s all part of the future as well.

It feels like we’ve talked about everything in this class, from dating apps to complicated algorithms, the knowledge we’ve gained and experiences we’ve had will change and have already changed the way we live our daily lives. We saw the great revolution of Facebook’s iconic “Like” button. We saw the United States government and Apple battle relentlessly in court over consumer privacy. We saw the Pope join Instagram. We’re living in a consistently changing digital landscape, and taking the time to discuss it for a few months has shown me how much is truly happening under its hood. It truly is an impossible task to master a field as complicated, broad, and fluid as this one, but hell, we can try.

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Consumers and companies alike have to keep pushing, constantly challenging the limits of social media and digital business. Crowdfunding and sharing has become huge in our society, for better or for worse, and allowed individuals with a good idea to have a voice in an online world where everybody’s yelling. Between the kajillion posts/tweets/videos/etc that are being shared every day, sometimes it’s hard to create value. I believe it is in the community that value is found. The concept of democracy is a central building block of content-sharing websites, and the community’s approval and disapproval has generally served its purpose well. Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube have created an environment where people can communicate and share their opinions 24/7, 365, and  media can go viral within hours. Interspersed between cat videos and political agendas, truly good ideas and causes can spread like wildfire, and social awareness effected almost instantaneously.

But while these sites may be biased by the people in your circles, I believe the true beauty of the internet lies in websites like Reddit. Nobody really knows anyone, and the democratic power of the masses is seen at its best. Self-proclaimed the “Front Page of the Internet,” Reddit allows for users to have an environment where they can be themselves, free of judgement (for the most part), and witness how the human aspect of social media behaves. Whether or not something someone posts or comments is objectively good or bad, who knows. But that’s not what I care about about, it’s in the behavior of the social online machine created by the general population that we have to look to.

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I believe the key to success for social media in digital business lies in understanding this kind of behavior. Too often we’ve seen blunders on social, whether a news site uses a clickbait headline for a crime story, or a national seafood chain fails to comment on a singer’s Superbowl performance. Companies need to understand that the future is on the internet, and they need to have the resources necessary to positively interact with their online consumers.

Hopefully, with the knowledge we’ve gained through these couple of months, #IS6621 will produce leaders and pioneers in the digital marketing age. Thank you to every single one of you for the presentations you’ve given, the discussions we’ve had, and the food you have provided. This is not the end, this is merely the beginning. Let’s get tweeting.

10 comments

  1. Great post! I like the idea that we’re only at the beginning. Social media is always evolving, so just because this class ends doesn’t mean, we’ve learned everything there is to know. I think that we’ve only just scratched the surface, and I agree that an understanding of social behavior is critical to success in digital business.

  2. Nice post! I agree, it is impossible to master the internet as it rapidly changes and evolves. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned from this class, it’s that it’s not helpful to take the “jack of all trades, master of none” approach to social media & the internet, simply because we can’t. It’s so much easier to be a master of one (or two!), as we’ve all demonstrated with our presentations. It’ll be exciting to see what happens next.

  3. Awesome post! Love your philosophy. I totally agree with you on the fact that companies need to understand that digital is not just a trend. It’s here to last and even here to disrupt the way they do business. It’s crazy to see the number of companies who still don’t realize that, or at least, don’t do anything. Anyway great post and thank you!

  4. I am not sure whether I was not as informed as I was before taking this class or if major trends occurred ironically while we were taking this class, but I truly agree with you that we have learned a lot! I had read the article on crowdfunding and find the point you bring up about democracy and everyone having a voice when it comes to new innovations, important. Great post and it will be interesting to see where the Internet will lead us and businesses next!

  5. yifanhong04233 · ·

    Great post. I like your idea that we are just at the beginning of social media. For ourselves, it is hard to master the idea of social media in less than 4 months. And for the world, social media has been exisiting for less than 10 years–it is not mature enough. But I think with the basic knowledge we have learned in this class, we can prosper in social media age.

  6. Awesome post, Raul! I love that you point to the community as the true value of social– I think that insight speaks volumes. I particularly liked that you said, “it’s in the behavior of the social online machine created by the general population that we have to look to.” It’s so true that there’s far more under the hood than you might expect, and that the value of online interactions goes much deeper than the surface view of kajillions of pieces of content. I don’t know that environments like Reddit allow this to be displayed in its purest form, but I agree completely that they’re an important window into our society. Great message and note to end on!

  7. Nice post. I’m really surprised Reddit didn’t come up more in class this semester. It usually does.

  8. Great post, As I read your reflection I am impressed by the number of topics and concepts we talked about during class in a somewhat organic way. The biggest things I remember was the like button redesign, the apple debate and Professor Chang’s class. I was surprised just like @geraldckane that the reddit discussion didn’t come up.

  9. Great post! Just wanted to say that you did a great job reflecting on the year. I really liked your idea that we are at the beginning social media and have a long way to go. Overall I really enjoyed your writing style and hope you have a great year.

  10. Reddit represents, to me, both the best and worst of the internet.

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