Blogademia
Wednesday, April 12, 2006
 
I made this
Consumer Generated Media

So this was an expression I first heard at the recent AAAI Weblog symposium - weblogs are a type of consumer generated media. With weblogs and wikis and comments and podcasts and all the different ways technology is enabling the people to have a voice, it makes sense to have one term to rule them all. However, that I heard the term used first in the industry panel, and the very use of the word consumer, the intention is clear.

We are fodder. What for has not been decided yet, but it was clear that the panel are looking for uses for the media they allow their users...sorry, consumers...to generate. Hey, we designed this cool tool that you like using, what are you going to give to us? It's all wrapped up in enabling the consumer though. Hey, if we know more about you, we can help you better. There is talk of marketing of money, the user is a consumer not a customer - the customers are people who pay the big bucks, the advertisers, the marketing men, the governments...maybe. Personalisation is the future!

Of course, this leaves me in a somewhat hypocritical position. Of all the things that you can learn about a person...their favourite soft drink, what kind of movies they like, how many friends they have/want...surely the most personal thing you can learn is their personality. Now, I know that everyone is different and my work makes generalisations...but still, I am aiming to learn about personality from langauge. People don't like to be pigeonholed, people don't like to be put in a box with all the people they are supposed to be the same as...but at the same time, people love to know what makes them different and unique.

I'm honestly not sure where I'm going with this. I guess it's one of those stream of consciousness posts you here about on the blogvine. I'd be interested to here what other people think about this? How do you feel about services being tailored to meet you specific requirements? How far do you think this should go? Are you okay with only being different from most people?

Just a little something to contemplate over the Easter weekend. I'll be interested to see what people have to say upon my return from the Cotswolds.



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