TV shows are full of ‘big’ moments: high drama, life and death decisions, the last 2 seconds before the bomb explodes. My life on the other hand is full of decisions about what to have for dinner and wondering if I’m going to miss the bus.
For most of us, real life is mostly trivia. And when we communicate with people, that trivia is what connects us. After all, which are we more likely to hear during a coffee break:
- Oh really? I was just thinking about the fundamental ethical questions in human cloning too!
- Or: Oh really? Our cat brought in a rat at the weekend too.
Those trivia connect us: those moments of common, ordinary life. Micro-blogging tools such as Twitter build up the intimacy of dozens or hundreds of shared moment of reality, both trivial and lofty.
Alison Black posted in Shift6 — PR data bites:
…I found MIT Technology Review’s recent interview of Twitter’s founder, Evan Williams, and two (very articulate) Twitter users so appealing. If you had not understood the potential for ‘ambient intimacy’ that Twitter enables, the real user experiences described in the video would go a long way towards convincing you.
The video is: Twitter and Ambient Intimacy (movie, 7 minutes 13 seconds). My favourite parts:
Evan Williams: Co-founder of Twitter and Blogger:
It feels intimate because you learn things about people that you wouldn’t know unless you were very close to them.
Twitter is by nature more ephemeral and more trivial in some respects, but it’s social connection that makes people take it up — it’s the same reason you talk to people.
Kate Greene, Information Technology Editor, Technology Review:
The concept of presence and sharing ideas and thoughts immediately with people — I think that’s something that’s so intrinsic to us that it’ll stick around just because of our basic human desire to do that.