Meta, Physical (I Tweet, Therefore I Am)

Jennifer Winberg, global social strategist, Momentum Worldwide, is kicking off Day Two of the Social Media Insider Summit on a metaphysical note. That’s appropriate, because her keynote is about the “meta audience.” Somehow, I don’t think she’s talking about metaconsciousness, per se, but if you read on, you may expand your own, consciousness.

“This is very philosophical,” Winberg began, encouraging the Summit attendees to be part of the Socratic debate, which is fundamentally around the notion that human beings have changed the way they humanize, and that we no longer communicate the way humans evolved over millions of years -- by talking to each other.

“I tweet, therefore I am,” Winberg continued, asserting that because of the emergence of social media, “a new consumer has emerged.”

Winberg calls them, “the connected protagonists,” and she claims they have actually developed a new form of sensory perception that is now an extension of the electronic devices and digitally connected platforms. “It is as much a sense as smell, or sight or hearing.”

It was by this point that another sense started to rumble deep inside my own gut -- a sense of nausea. Seriously, I love attending these insider summits and swilling, if not actually drinking the Kool-aid, but this notion that the only way human beings connect is with devices and platforms. That notion also provokes a sense of rage, because I know it’s not true, but I also know it’s impossible to debate the big mo’ (as in Momentum, worldwide, or just on Madison Avenue). Once the advertising, marketing and media industry gets behind something, it becomes true, right? Even if it’s not.

What I’d like to see is some good, honest, and objective research on exactly how much of the “conversation,” digital media in general, and social media in particular, occupies. I know it’s not insignificant. But I also know it’s not all of it. And I’m going to guess, that it’s well less than half of it. So if anyone else out there has any real research on this, I’d love to see it (joe@mediapost.com).

So now Winberg relays a personal anecdote to convey her point about the meta audience, a conversation she had with her mom. Significantly, Winberg said she “talked” to her mom. She didn’t tweet or whatever her.

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