Real Life Community

January 3, 2009

I’m sitting here in the shuttle to JFK having finished an awesome trip to NYC and I’m thinking about community.

In our industry that word gets thrown around a lot, but I’m not talking about our product, I’m talking about our process.

This thing that has happened over the last few years has been special. A global ecosystem of people – no of friends – has been created. Friends defined not by their knowledge of each other necessarily, but in the knowledge of a shared idea. A shared belief perhaps. That by being more open and connected we can achieve new, better things.

Better ideas, better friends, better businesses, better governance… maybe even eventually a better society.

I have met these people everywhere I go. From Amsterdam to New York City. They are individuals and groups with unparalleled openness to new people and new ideas. They have opened their homes and minds to me and the others around them. It has been amazing to watch.

We all seem to recognize our common hopes in each other instantly. Hopes about the social web, about our work and maybe even in a new kind of global social consciousness.

People like @askfrasco who let me stay in her Greenwitch Village apartment for almost a month. @Brett who invited and introduced me to almost everyone in New York – especially @tedmurphy, @mikepratt & @hellyeah1. My old friends (old in both age and length of friendship) @globalcitizen and @bryanthatcher who lent me their offices and reminisced about past parties and work. One of the first people I met in the US tech scene, @gregarious, who showed me his old family home and introduced me to new friends like @rogerwu @themaria, @suzymae, @skyle and @technosailor. And by extension their introduction to @hermannm who had us over for a random dinner party.

All these people (and these are just some of the ones in NYC), have all shown me this new kind of person. This new community. I hope that this collective survives the faded Web 2.0 bandwagon and the defusing funding surge to turn into something more important, long lasting and profound.

A new kind of global collective that seeds our ideas in the general, mainstream public to change the people around us – one at a time. To help them to discover the kind of global village we know exists. Because after all, the future is already here, it’s just not evenly distributed… yet.

Happy new year my friends.

3 Responses to “Real Life Community”

  1. @themaria Says:

    It was a pleasure meeting you and your brother. I echo your thoughts on the rich community experience that we have all been experiencing and helping create. When I was just new to NYC (just about 1.5 years ago), and didn’t know anyone, the tech / social media community embraced me with open arms. The in-person relationships have been reinforced with tools like Twitter and Facebook, as well as online Twitter conversations with online-only friends have transcended into offline, rich in-person interactions. These are exciting times we live in for sure!!

    As for you personally, we can’t wait for you to come back and visit us. Until then, we get to share our lives, ideas and ideals via Twitter, Facebook, blogs, etc. (and if you ever need a couch to crash on, you are always welcome at La Casa de Maria)


  2. gregorylent Says:

    thanks for saving me from a bad mood …

    i get so fed up with the drivel that “thought-leaders” and social media divas put out that i too often forget that there really is a new mind being revealed …

    thanks …

    enjoy, gregory lent

  3. @kit Says:

    “Friends defined not by their knowledge of each other necessarily, but in the knowledge of a shared idea. A shared belief perhaps.”

    That’s the beauty of riding the same tide. (n_n)
    The future is insanely brilliant…

    Though I must admit that the task of bringing this new age community to all will be a pretty difficult task, I am in full support of it’s endevors.

    As a marketing student, interactive and on-line marketing is both exciting and mind blowing, nolonger main stream or below-the-line but a whole new category on to itself. It connects us to a global market, enriches consumer relationships and contributes to a society’s development and enlightenment as well as culture.

    Kudos to that!
    Cheers (n_n)

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