Close

Reviews

Seeing through other’s eyes: Social media and compassion

August 25, 2009 Comments

Reading Time: 1 minutes

There’s no doubt social media makes the world smaller – friends and family across the country and around the globe are only a click away.

There’s also no doubt that as frontrunners like twitter and facebook monetize their business plans, social media will prove to be a goldmine for those left standing.

What is often overlooked in the rush for friends, influence or money, is the ability of social media to generate compassion.

The Global Lives Project above, organized by volunteers, does something simple. It allows us to see our world through other’s eyes. It captures the diversity of different people’s lives and shares it among people that would probably never meet.

Social media, and in particular twitter with its follower strategy and facebook with its fan pages, allows us to achieve the same result. Strangers are readily accessible, and with the premium placed on dialogue, users can easily gain a deeper understanding of lives different to their own.

Social media has an important role to play in melting the barriers that breed ignorance, intolerance and aggression. When we understand another’s life, we are able to see ourselves in them and suddenly there is the possibility of change.

To witness this dynamic in action, here’s the Retweet Revolution, a dramatic visualization of how twitter served as an engine of compassion during the Iran election.

As social media grows and gains in importance, my hope is that it won’t always take a crisis for us to draw each other nearer.

Here’s another great example of generating compassion through shared experience with an appropriate message.

READ MORE FROM SIMON MAINWARING!

4 responses to “Seeing through other’s eyes: Social media and compassion”

  1. Suzanne Shay says:

    Appreciate the perspective. I am amazed at the power of @aplusk when he chooses to embrace a cause. One person reaching an audience that large… Completely foreign concept even 5 years ago. Take it down to my small scale. I have an audience of 400 between applications. Also completely foreign concept 5 years ago. What differences could I be making if I chose to post things of significance rather than my “song of the day” picks? Not that those are bad, but I am certainly missing an opportunity! Thanks for pointing that out.

  2. Suzanne Shay says:

    Appreciate the perspective. I am amazed at the power of @aplusk when he chooses to embrace a cause. One person reaching an audience that large… Completely foreign concept even 5 years ago. Take it down to my small scale. I have an audience of 400 between applications. Also completely foreign concept 5 years ago. What differences could I be making if I chose to post things of significance rather than my “song of the day” picks? Not that those are bad, but I am certainly missing an opportunity! Thanks for pointing that out.

  3. admin says:

    I know. I’m actually working with his company right now, Katalyst, on a big, valued-based initiative. Great people all round. And the power of that reach is phenomenal. As a marketer, I feel it’s important to sometimes step back and look at what we’re doing. Yes, we’re selling widgets, but at the end of the day that’s really no as important as any positive change we can make. And boy, do we need some now. I’m really excited about the doors that social media is opening up for change. You’re not being bad (of course). Social media is to be used as we wish. It’s just equally gratifying, if not more, to put it to good use. Hope all’s well, Suzanne and thanks. Simon

  4. admin says:

    I know. I’m actually working with his company right now, Katalyst, on a big, valued-based initiative. Great people all round. And the power of that reach is phenomenal. As a marketer, I feel it’s important to sometimes step back and look at what we’re doing. Yes, we’re selling widgets, but at the end of the day that’s really no as important as any positive change we can make. And boy, do we need some now. I’m really excited about the doors that social media is opening up for change. You’re not being bad (of course). Social media is to be used as we wish. It’s just equally gratifying, if not more, to put it to good use. Hope all’s well, Suzanne and thanks. Simon

Leave a Reply

Connect

Recent Tweets

Stay Informed

About Simon

Simon Mainwaring

Reading Time: 1 minutes

Topics

Archives