Social Science and Innovation Twitter

by Dan Robles on 04/25/2010

twitter-graphIs Twitter really an Innovation?

Twitter growth is slowing down.  Only 30% of the members actually do it. What can actually get accomplished in 140 characters?  Obviously there is a hardcore group of tweeters feeding Twitter.  And another hardcore group trolling Twitter. Are they the Paul Reveres of our society or the Chicken Littles?

Relationship Economics

In our thesis for the  next economic paradigm, we establish one very important relationship between “information”, “knowledge”, and “innovation”.  Remember back to high school science class when the teacher talked about the relationship between distance, velocity, and acceleration of objects in motion such as a baseball, a car, or the heavenly bodies?

They fed us with some obtuse relationship that was supposed to explain a lot of what happens in nature while most kids were imagining quite a different set of heavenly bodies in motion in nature.  This clearly represents two distinct points of view certainly not favoring the geeks in the gang.

But everything depends on your Point of View!

Now, suppose that we define “information”, as the distance between two points of view. Next we’ll define “knowledge” as the velocity of a body moving between those two points of view. Next we’ll define “innovation” as the increase in a person’s knowledge that occurs as they travel between those two points of view.  The AH-HA moment can then be celebrated in any manner of grunts and giggles, or champaign if you wish.

So let’s get back to Twitter.

The Obama Whitehouse issued a statement on Twitter today that the President would be postponing a trip to Asia.  The amazing thing is that all they did was issue a point of view on Twitter – people did the rest… and quite naturally I’ll add.

Everyone else took the tweet and pushed it into their point of view.  NPR associates the tweet with the Healthcare Bill.  FOX associates the tweet with Democrat incompetence.  Most people listening to the news ask themselves, “what’s in it for me”? Meanwhile, the Asians take it in yet a different way, etc.

Why run when you can walk?

All of this would have happened even if they issues a multi-media press release with full deployment of spin doctors.  Why not Twitter?  This brings us back to the original question;

Is Twitter an Innovation?

If you go with the traditional definition that innovation as a “new idea with an economic outcome” (presumably for the Twitter Organization), the answer would be no.  If you go with the new definition of innovation; “The increase in the rate of change of knowledge in a community”, relative to social priorities, the answer is yes.

The way you define the intention has everything to do with how you arrive at the solution, or not.  I learned that lesson in High School.

{ 32 comments }

Simon Guilliard June 7, 2010 at 5:05 pm

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Thumbs Up! May 1, 2010 at 9:49 pm

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Joe Grasso April 25, 2010 at 5:39 am

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StarGazon April 25, 2010 at 5:31 am

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Angela Suddarth April 25, 2010 at 5:27 am

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Is Twitter really an Innovation?
Twitter growth is slowing … http://bit.ly/cXzYjr

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Achievers Network April 25, 2010 at 5:04 am

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prblogs April 25, 2010 at 5:04 am

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