When Google is the front door, the side door, the hidden key under the mat, the cash register, the finder of everything we ever lost, and everything we wished we’d lost, what comes next? When everyone is a newspaper, a magazine, a TV station, a radio station, a conference, a curator, an educator, a business owner, a shopkeeper, what do we have? When you and I are the creators, the consumers, and the collaborators of this media, what does this mean to us?
The gatekeepers are still out there. Neither you nor I can write for the New York Times or put a film up on the BBC. We can’t just bind up our book and stick it on the shelf at Waterstones or Chapters. We can’t waltz into any giant corporation and offer up our products.
Maybe we’re just preachers and nonprofit types. Maybe we just want to reach people like us in all this noise. How do we connect? This might just be the wilderness of a million signals, the atomization of the world’s voices, the fall of the tower of Babel. Again.
Tune Your Signal. Gather.
We hold the tools. We have the goals. We have permission. It’s us.
What comes next in a post media world, where everything is atomized, is that we work on building molecules. We cast off the old models, and we assemble new forms.
Put up your first signal. Get your voice out there. What happens next? Do people respond?
Because what comes next, I believe, is that you gather together the people who share your views. You reach out and connect with those who understand your goals, who share them, who breathe them in the same pulse.
And as you learn how to reach out to people? As you tune your signal, you’ll find that you can accomplish more with more people in collaboration.
The Next Action
This might read as just a thought piece to you, but it isn’t. It’s the mindset before the action. It’s the larger vision before the tiny, granular moves.
If everything is modular, make each piece have a means to connect. If everything is its own gatejumper, make each piece such that it can align with others. If everything is a solo voice, make it harmonize with a choir.
If you are selling, make everything a la carte, and everything a bundle. If you are curating, find the frame, collect, and make it easy to build the large work. If you are servicing, be the very best at building the crowd into a voice, and listen long and hard to that voice.
Oh, and community is not an option.
And if this makes no sense whatsoever, go back to reading about blogging and the ROI of Facebook and Twitter and stock prices.
Inspired by my friend, Ed, who pointed out this brief post by Fred Wilson, who used the term “post media company” to refer to Google. I found an older reference here pointing to this snip.
Photo credit, collage of imags from this set