As global climate, resource and economic issues continue to grow in complexity, I see a source of hope in what is otherwise viewed as a nuisance by many of my clients. The empowerment of networked individuals using social media has created unprecedented movements, like the 300 000+ person strong People’s Climate March in NYC this past September.
The online movements behind this, made of millions, are driven by rising expectations and a greater sense of power to make their own choices regarding the environment, the economy and social equity. Ultimately, I think both my clients and society as a whole are better off when a dialogue between traditional power centers and these new powers is achieved.
The old activist in me still wants to save the world somehow and the rise of networked society, aided and abetted by social media, has recently given rise to some impressive social changes and even the occasional regime change. Given the pending environmental, resource and population crises our planet faces, wouldn’t it be great if these same currents of new power were marshaled collectively, through dialogue and deliberation, to solve the pressing issues that governments and institutions seem powerless to address?
Perhaps this is wishful thinking. But it is a hope engaging enough to merit a good discussion. So allow me to invite you to a parallel space, socialforsurvival.com, in which I have opened such a discussion. It’s a space to share examples of where online networked power is directed towards solving social, economic and environmental problems but also one where we discuss how social media can be directed to crowd source a future in which a resource-strapped planet holds together and offers a decent quality if life for the many and not just the few.
Your thoughts there are most welcome as they have always been here!