Thursday, April 19, 2007

Facebook + VTech

GigaOm has a great article up today on the effect of social websites, Facebook in particular, on the dissemination of news and, on a larger level, the legitimacy of the web (and, again, Facebook in particular) as a avenue of communicating emotion (in this case, the vast number of groups and events that have popped up on the site in response to Monday's events at Virginia Tech).

And it's completely true. Though the internet will always be the internet, a form of communication more impersonal than phone calls and actual human contact, it has increased in emotional relevance - emails are pretty much as intimate as snail mail notes (though 10 years ago many said this would never happen), Facebook wall posts are an acceptable way to wish your friend happy birthday (though a phone call usually means more), etc. The groups formed and profile pictures changed in response to Monday's tragedy, though on a website, express and symbolize true empathy and support.

Whether it's setting up a group to let your friends know you're OK or joining one to show your unity in standing behind Virginia Tech and its victims, the web is changing. Welcome to a more connected world.

(PS - I have to say this blog has reached a new low - I'm now blogging in class. In my defense, my prof is droning on about why his memorization and superficial project-based class, disliked by all, was actually useful.)

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