E L S U A ~ A KM Blog by Luis Suarez

From the blog

It Is All about You, Indeed, but the Social You – About the Power of Online Communities

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Well, it is official! I am now on holidays! Yay! And for the next few weeks! Excellent! So, to start with, I have been enjoying a couple of days off and away from the computer for just about everything else. But you will get to hear about that shortly. Not to worry. However, what happened? I have just been away for a couple of days and it looks like a whole bunch of the folks I get to follow on a daily basis from all sorts of different interest areas have gone wild and pretty much crazy and decided to link to the very same story that has been going around in the last couple of days. You will have to bear with me on this one, but I am just going to link to all of the different weblog entries that I have been finding while doing a little bit of catch up with my RSS feeds as at the end of that exercise there is a message for all of us that we should not forget and should act as a reminder as well for all of us.

I guess all of this has happened because of the recent TIME magazine article "You — Yes, You — Are TIME’s Person of the Year". Yes, I know, I get to receive an award of such merit and I am not even there to pick it up ! How dare I do just that? Shame on me! I guess that next year it will be difficult for me to be even nominated for it again. I suppose I have now lost my lifetime chance. My very own 15 minutes of online fame. My opportunity to tell everyone what it has meant being there, through thick and thin, all of these years. Whatever. I am not going to bore you any longer with the typical speech everyone has been sharing all over. I rather prefer to comment on another subject, still very much related, and which not many people have been noticing all along since that news article was published.

Yes, indeed, TIME may have just announced that TIME’s 2006 Person of the Year is you!, which I know is pretty cool, but the thing that most people seem to have been ignoring is that this is not an award about an individual or individuals just for the sake of that user-generated-media buzz, on the contrary. It is actually all about that user-generated-content shared with others. Yes, that is the whole point to me regarding TIME’s article: You, the social you, gets the "Person of the Year 2006" award, because whether we like it or not, without that social aspect embedded on all of those different interactions we got nothing. No Web 2.0, no social computing, no social networking. Nothing. Nada. Zero.

Yes, that is what I have found very remarkable about the article itself and that is the fact that for the first time in a long while, perhaps even for the first and only time, here we have got one of the most frequently read, and influential, traditional magazines recognising the power of online communities to change the world in such a significant manner that it gets to be nominated for such award. How cool is that? Doesn’t that make you feel good? Specially if you are an online community builder who has been struggling throughout the years trying to convince people all over the place, both inside and outside of work, about the power of the group, of the community, to make things happen in much more significant and powerful ways?

I am sure that this article is actually going to change the way most folks out there, specially knowledge workers, think about being part of a community, of a group with a common goal, a shared purpose, a common tools suite to encourage knowledge sharing and collaboration on a specific topic and so forth. For us all, online community builders, it would mean that things would get a little bit easier, that we would probably not have to deal so much with the basics but from now on getting a bit more into the details on why communities just simply work the way they do.

So for that and for so much more, thanks much!, TIME, for such an award and for helping enlighten the world about what online communities and the power of social computing are all about. Appreciated waking them up!

Oh, and in case you may be wondering what have been my favourite quotes from the overall article here you have them:

"It’s a story about community and collaboration on a scale never seen before […] It’s about the many wresting power from the few and helping one another for nothing and how that will not only change the world, but also change the way the world changes."


"We’re looking at an explosion of productivity and innovation, and it’s just getting started, as millions of minds that would otherwise have drowned in obscurity get backhauled into the global intellectual economy"

Yes, indeed, it feels good!

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  1. Hi Dennis ! Thanks a bunch for the kind comments and for dropping by ! I am really glad you enjoyed those ! And good news, stay tuned because there are some more to come. I went there again and will be sharing some more over the next few days ! Ahhh, the holidays …! 😉

  2. Luis, FYI, IBM’s new approach to Innovation Management.
    Innovation Trends and Levers、September 2006
    Dr. Iris Ginzburg
    Global Leader, Innovation Management Practice

    SSME in Israel and Practical Implications Around the World
    Dr. Iris Ginzburg
    Global Leader, Innovation Management Practice
    Haifa Research Lab, IBM Research

  3. Hello Sawada-san ! Thanks a lot for dropping by, once again, specially during this holiday break and for sharing, yet again, two terrificly interesting reads for anyone into innovation and how it is actually going to shape up the way we share our knowledge and collaborate with others. I think that both articles deserve a weblog post of their own, so I will do some more in-depth reading of them both and will create, perhaps after the holidays, a follow up weblog post on them. Again, appreciated the links provided and the sharing of information. It is greatly appreciated, Sawada-san. Thanks again !

  4. Hi Sawada-san! Fantastic addition, indeed ! In fact, I know Clive for some time now and I am really glad to see some of the influence of the different IBM communities programs scattered around through the entire presentation. There are a number of different elements that, again, I would want to highlight in separate weblog posts as I feel they do deserve that particular space and much much more. So thanks again for dropping by and for the excellent addition into this thread ! Excellent stuff !

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