Update: the below post set off a firestorm of comments on Facebook. Here’s my response. ~ ed.
The “Dark Side of Social Media.”
Keep your friends close, and follow Sarah Palin on twitter.
I’m a fan of Sarah Palin—on Facebook. I follow Sarah Palin—on twitter.
Like her or hate her, Sarah Palin can speak soundbite culture better than anyone else.
For her, shortening her thoughts on a subject to 140 characters is a cinch—it’s the in-depth stuff that’s proven more challenging.
From the Harvard Business Review, on the Dark Side of Social Media. Excerpt:
Sarah Palin can turn a phrase. Hers is not the style of Churchill or JFK; in fact, it’s quite the opposite. And that’s the point. Once we thought of political oratory as speech used to build community, unite people, and inflate the spirit, as in “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” Instead, Palin has shown us how it can be used to deflate if not the spirit, then at least the opponent. “How’s that hopey, changey stuff working out for ya?” she asks, and in no time the line is on Twitter, the clip on YouTube, and Zazzle.com is selling it on bumper stickers.
She has a kajillion followers on Facebook (though many of those, undoubtedly, follow her, like me, so we can be aware of her latest spew), and her status is frequently quoted in the media. She rocks Twitter, too:
The HBR article goes on to discuss how social media, like any tool, can be used for good or ill. It’s an obvious point, but one we (including me) tend to forget in the rush of excitement that follows any new technology.