I have to say I’ve been disappointed with the way the Republican presidential candidates have been handling the YouTube/CNN debate. When I first heard that only Ron Paul and John McCain were committed to appearing and how Romney wasn’t gonna answer no questions from no damn snowman, I immediately thought of Henry Jenkins.
John Hagel is giving rhetorical form to what I think are the most important issues at the confluence of business, economics, marketing and even epistemology. His “Unanswered Questions at Supernova 2007” post from a month ago is still consuming my thoughts even when I’m trying to do other things, like eat and sleep.
In the graceful, brutal arc of a doomed relationship (romantic, professional, abstract, etc.), there may not be a staccato thunderclap signaling that Things Just Went ‘Round The Bend. Most often, evidence of the downward spiral comes in the aggregate, the result of a slow leak from pressurized discontents. What starts with an uncompromised disagreement evolves into militant passive-aggression and thereafter degrades to bitter nothingness. This has been well chronicled in the Cure’s old stuff.
Here’s a recent McKinsey report on Web 2.0 in business. The highlight for me was that 42% of respondents said that they, “Invested at the right time but should have more in our companies internal capabilites,” and 24% said that they, “Should have invested sooner in technology that in the meantime had a significant impact on our industry.”
I don’t know why I haven’t posted something about this before. I find myself talking about this all the time. Here’s the gist:
Marketing is dead. You can be humans again.
No, really. Not the practice of taking things to market; I mean “marketing, the paradigm”. Marketing, of necessity, has been about dealing with customers at arm’s length. This is a byproduct of the industrial revolution. In order to pass the value of economies of scale to customers, companies had to be big. They had to talk to a lot of people. Since Gutenberg, the only tools available for—indeed the only ways to even think about—talking to a lot of people have been unidirectional. These univalent tools are the currency of marketing. They offer really no meaningful dialogue.