The World's First Social War
social sincerity drives the bandwagon

social media isn't socialism

Lenon Listen up.

Your blog matters to you.  Hopefully it matters to your readers.  And your readers may have voices of their own.

However, your blog is not the NY Times.  Just because you blog doesn't put you on par with with Newsweek.  You may not be a reporter, you're an opinionated individual, possibly a member of a community.

You have incredible potential.  You may have incredible passion.  But the world doesn't turn by your opinion alone.

Social media isn't socialism.

Just because we share doesn't mean that everything we write is free for all to share.  Just because you credit a source doesn't give you the moral/ethical/legal right to re-purpose it Check the licensing terms on a blog, video, photo, or any other piece of social content before you share it.

Social media isn't socialism.

Few corporations can afford to share all of their secrets, tactics, strategies and finances.  Some things belong behind the firewall.  A business has a right to secrecy.  They do not have a right to mislead, misrepresent, misinform or otherwise lie.

Social media isn't socialism.

You can complain on twitter.  You can rant on your blog.  You can protest in your own little corner.  And as long as you are being truthful (and you're willing to pay for a lawyer to back up your rights to do so), you are probably fine.  But the party you are protesting has every right to ignore you.  And you have every right to build a movement.  But until there is a firm business case for driving engagement, many businesses will choose to ignore you. 

Social media isn't socialism.

This is the market reality.  And this is OK. 

Our market dynamic is evolving.  People have expectations.  Brands have expectations.  And one day, we will meet somewhere in the middle.  In the meantime, use your voice.  Use your mind.  Think honestly and earnestly.  Think about brand sincerity, authenticity.  Think about your brand as a mix of community perception, user perception and brand broadcast messaging. 

Because as important as you are as a blogger, you are not the be-all and end-all.  We are.

Inspired by Peter Kim on twitter. For Peter's thoughts on this meme, check out his original blog post here. note: I've had this post in the hopper for about 5 months. I would credit Peter with the phrase "Social Media isn't Socialism" across all instances had I not already written most of this post. I am however, crediting his tweet as inspiration to dust off this post and finally publish.

photo credit here