One Last Time

Final Reflections from Social Media and Digital Business

I want to first begin my final blog of the semester by thanking the entire class and professor Kane for making my experience in Social Media and Digital Business an unforgettable and eventful experience. I mean c’mon, how awesome was it that we had snack-time every class?

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Shout Out to Stefan for the awesome Snack! #Oathpizza

During this break, I was able to communicate with many classmates and simply get to know them better and understand how they think and interpret class. This made a class of unknown students a lot more fluid and active in discussion and participation. So again, thank you all for making this experience worthwhile.

Reflecting on my first blog, my major themes and questions heading into this class were learning more about technology/social media and its volatile impact on modern society. I am a finance and economics major. So in most of my core courses, I am exposed to mostly theory and quantitative data. As a senior at BC, I wanted balance. I wanted to enroll in a class that I felt would be valuable and relevant as I begin to make the transition into the real world. Social Media and Digital Business has fulfilled all my hopes. This course has allowed me to view the world in a different light and give me a stronger understanding of potentially impactful societal changings that I will be exposed to upon graduation. Sharing this class with both undergrad and postgrad students allowed excellent balance and interpretation of class readings and TED videos.

Sticking on the theme of disruptive social media and technology, I found the most impactful lecture and discussion was on the impact of the sharing economy. This was a recurring theme throughout the entire semester through twitter discussions, blogs and class discussion.

Sharing Economy 

Uber and its autonomous driving technology were a significant part of every class discussion. I cannot remember one class where this was not mentioned in some capacity. As a reflection, peer to peer markets, such as Uber, has brought efficiency to industries that had been criticized for their inefficiencies. Highlighting the car industry, before Uber and other car services, most cars have been wasted. They sit in the garage or the parking lot for excessive hours during the day or night. Essentially, owning a vehicle is getting more expensive while the efficiencies of owning one are decreasing. This is where technologies like Uber, Lyft, and Zip Car have found a niche to change the entire platform. Who would have thought these technologies would influence more than just one industry? I certainly did not.

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Now, landlords, real estate, street designs, car industries are all altering their outlook of how their business will change. With autonomous driving, many different industries will be disrupted. Understanding this will help me gain an advantage when it comes time to enter the real world. As driving assistance technology advances, the need to own a car will decrease. More autonomous vehicles on the roads will decrease the number of accidents and therefore alter insurance companies. Mortgage prices in suburbs will increase because more people can live further away from their jobs and work during their commute to work. These are only a few of the potential impacts autonomous driving will cause to different industries, but this  only shows the severity of technological innovation.

The entire concept of peer to peer markets has completely shifted the outlook of certain industries. With apps like Airbnb, Venmo and Sofi are bringing efficiencies to so many different industries. These tech companies are raising mass amounts of private capitalization allowing them to expand their influence and power. My only gripe with all of this technology is government regulation moving forward. Another common theme that we saw this semester was government regulation and its role monitoring these advancements. We saw that most government regulation is reactive to improvements in technology rather than being proactive. peer-to-peer.jpgThis will be a serious issue moving forward. Government regulation can potentially define the future growth in these industries. Potential tax implantations to Airbnb or driver regulation to Uber can change how these companies operate. However with that being said, I believe that sharing economies will only increase in value and size. Consumer confidence and trust will continue to develop allowing for growth into different areas. Also, and more importantly is efficiency. For consumers, this means getting more services or benefits for a lower cost. It is hard to ignore this when older institutions are charging fees that may outweigh the benefit of the good or service they are providing. In result, both of these reasons will allow for continued growth.

As I wrap up my final blog post I want to conclude by saying that believe I achieved one of the main goals I set for myself coming into this class. I have obtained a greater understanding of technology and social media industry while also being able to analyze different technological aspects and how they can influence many different industries.  Thank you guys for a great semester.

signing-off

peace-out

 

6 comments

  1. rohansuwarna · ·

    Great job! I really enjoyed reading your final blog post. My favorite part of the class was also the small interactions we were able to have with each other during our break time and during our small group discussions. Speaking to other students about their perspectives on topics we discussed in class clearly helped my understanding and thought process. I think it’s really interesting that the Sharing Economy was your favorite topic from class. We were able to talk about this concept almost every class, which shows how important this is for the growth of technology in society.

  2. adawsisys · ·

    Nice post! I also enjoyed learning about the sharing economy, and how the concept has the potential to change a number of different industries in the future. It will be interesting to see how the government will respond to these changes. Hopefully new regulations will not be put in place to slow down innovation for the sake of saving outdated business models. Regulations make sense when they involve safety issues, but I otherwise believe that a hands off approach regarding disruptive technology is the best approach for the government to take.

  3. Nice post! It definitely did feel like we talked about Uber in basically every class. I thought you had a great summary of the sharing economy and how it helps maximize efficiency, such as with the car sitting around in the garage example, as well as how it will also impact other industries. There have also been a lot of articles around Twitter each week about how governments in various countries are trying to regulate Airbnb and Uber, such as how in some countries there’s a maximum limit to how many days a year you can rent out your apartment, or how Uber is banned in Austin. Although these regulations are (supposedly) meant to help people, hopefully they also won’t get in the way of innovation.

  4. gabcandelieri · ·

    Great post, Drew! I was also extremely interested in our discussions regarding the sharing economy throughout the semester. One of the largest issues I perceived was trust–the ability for the consumer to trust a stranger providing the service as well as the ability of the service provider to trust, for example, the stranger hopping into the back of his or her Uber/ renting his or her apartment. The ability to streamline these simple services has incredible value for established corporations and start-ups. Uber’s initiatives to enhance their drivers’ comfort levels and Airbnb’s efforts to create a website that accurately and adequately describes users experience so as to instill a level of security in users are steps in the right direction to ensuring the success of the sharing economy to come. This concept has the potential to completely alter human behavior and I am sure we will cross the milestone of universal use in the near future.

  5. Very cool post Drew! I was happy as well that we got to dive deep into the sharing economy and how it effects our lives. The sharing economy has had the ability to disrupt age old industries and that is where all this new power and money lie. Every major industry is under attack from the sharing economy and forcing them to innovate in order to stay on top. All that means to me is cheaper services at a higher quality. Competition is king, and as a consumer I love it. Great way to end the semester.

  6. Great post Drew! I loved learning about the sharing economy this semester since it’s something so relevant to us as active users and the future of business ownership. As unfortunate as it is to see mature industries like automakers, taxis, and hotels be disrupted by this new economy, I think it’s inevitable with how technology keeps developing over time. Many businesses and workers may be negatively affected, but the sharing economy also opens the door of opportunity for new businesses and workers.

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