Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Strength of Weak Ties (Gladwell & Lehrer)

Malcolm Gladwell, in his piece on online social networks entitled Small Change - Why the revolution will not be tweeted, states that while "high-risk activism ... is a "strong-tie" phenomenon, [...] the platforms of social media are built around weak ties". Hence, "[the organization of social media] makes it easier for activists to express themselves, and harder for that expression to have any impact".

Heavily citing a classical paper by Granovetter from 1973, Jonah Lehrer objects this "denigration of weak ties in social activism" on his Frontal Cortex Blog.

Great food for thought!

Addendum 05/10/10: Adding to the discussion on the power of social media is this talk by Clay Shirky from 2007

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