This is an absolutely terrific piece on the historic impact of social media by NYU professor Clay Shirkly. It’s certainly easy to forget about the power of social media when we take it for granted and use it for ‘poking’, and posting pictures of, friends. Shirkly states that, “The moment we’re living through – the moment our historical generation is living through – is the largest increase in expressive capability in human history.”
That’s a large claim but he does a great job explaining the similarities and differences in all the prior media revolutions (printing press, telephone, recorded media, radio/television) and finally gives examples of the internet’s power in recent worldwide events.
The most recent example of media production/consumption in this manner is the Iran Election (#iranelection via Twitter). OVerall, TED has hosted some very thought provocing talks and I consider this one of them.