Understanding the Groundswell Chapters 1-3

January 23, 2010 at 8:26 pm (PRCA 3030, Reading Notes)

The assigned textbook for my Social Media class at Georgia Southern University is Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies.

According to the book, the groundswell is defined as: “a social trend in which people use technologies to get the things they need from each other, rather than from traditional institutions like corporations.”

Chapter 1

The groundswell comes from 3 sources:

  1. People – the balance between the economies in institutions & the rebellion of their constituents shifted because of the spread of social technologies.
  2. Technology – It has changed the world’s social interactions. Everyone is online and connecting with each other at all times through social media.
  3. Economics – basically the internet equals money

Chapter 2

  • Groundswell thinking is compared to jujitsu (a Japanese martial art)
  • Groundswell technologies were grouped together in order for the reader/company to determine how people use them and what it means for the future. The chapter went into further detail concerning each group. The groups are as follows:

1. People creating blogs, user-generated content, & podcasts

2. People connecting: social networks & virtual worlds

3.  People collaborating: wikis & open source

4. People reacting to each other: forums, ratings, & reviews

5. People organizing content: tags

6. Accelerating consumption: rss & widgets

  • In order to evaluate new technologies, use the groundswell technology test and ask yourself these questions:

1. Does it enable people to connect with each other in new ways?

2. Is it effortless to sign up for?

3. Does it shift power from institutions to people?

4. Does the community generate enough content to sustain itself?

5. Is it an open platform that invites partnership?

Chapter 3

  • The Social Technologies Profile groups people based on groundswell activities in which they participate. The groups are as follows:

1. Creators

2. Critics

3. Collectors

4. Joiners

5. Spectators

6. Inactives

  • Why do people participate in the groundswell?

1. Keeping up friendships

2. Making new friends

3. Succumbing to social pressure from existing friends

4. Paying it forward

5. The altruistic impulse

6. The prurient impulse

7. The validation impulse

8. The affinity impulse


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