Reactions to an interview with a technophobe (Hot and cold media); authentically human behavior
We focus on “public status” which is the specific thing that brought Facebook (a little bit like Twitter).
Main reasons of disliking Facebook comes from its comparison with physical live communication. Live communication is assumed to be hot and Facebook to be cold.
That could be already a mistake if it would not be specified: Facebook should not be compared to physical live communication 1-to-1, but 1-to-many or some kind of lecture or open group conversation (shouting?).
Hot and cold will have to be define later. They are too broad but for now they are useful as they are evocative and understandable.
Facebook is said to ruin the quality of the message.
What is the quality of a message?
• Implication in composing the message: time spent, words chosen, personalised (targeted to at least a recipient)
• Interest of the message: entertaining content, informative content
Critics of main arguments
Undefined recipient – we are not necessarily the recipient of the message, we do not necessarily have a recipient to our message
Sending message: In this specific case, communicating sometimes becomes a game, a show. The aim is to compete for the more interesting message to collect reactions (“like” or “RT”). Implication and quality are present in these messages.
Receiving message: interview an addict, there might be a pleasure to be able to know everything through a live feed about your friends (comparing to the time spent on Facebook)
Instantaneity – amount and rate (speed) of message rise. We are distracted, multi-parallel-communication
There is a real pleasure to converse instantaneously, easily, it is closed to vocal live communication.
The “public” and the “multiple-parallel” conversation that make possible Facebook is a trade-off. It maybe make messages less powerful but the high quantity is maybe part of what makes it hot. Quantity is maybe a source of communicative satisfaction equivalent to quality.
Easy – technology makes things easier. Less effort needed, less effort spent
The notion of effort evolved it maybe became the fact of keeping alive a relation in the time.
Even if there is less effort, taking the time to select a receiver, write something and send it is maybe already an effort.
e.g. Wishing a happy birthday by Facebook is already taking the time to do it, to appear publicly on a wall, (some people might think it is estimating that we are not too intrusive by doing this and showing we are close enough).
Emotional expression limited by the medium – the interface limits ourselves. We need to find ways to express our feeling without writing a long paragraph of text
The quality doesn’t depends on the medium, but on the users, some users do take the time (because it is a matter of time) to bring what we call quality to their message.
There are possibilities to bring implication in communication from the users. e.g. “No wishes on my Facebook wall without gift”
And that’s where comes the hacking (sms language, smiley, ASCII…)
Remember that non behavior is absolute and relying on the mass is not always the more interesting.
The medium goes toward some usages but doesn’t impose them. e.g. We can have really as much fine texts on the web than in books, it’s a matter of time and implication.
It depends if people turn the medium into their own tool, then it can defrost.
Some users succeed in communicating some kind of warmness in the message
I have to search for what usage of these media make them human “authentic”
e.g. Annoying someone during a quiet course by making ring his phone many times: no verbal understandable message but meaningful intention of communication.
e.g. Birthday on Facebook
e.g. Communicating by sending the link to a song which the title is significant
• Examples are very interesting, try to isolate them. Try to list a bunch of them (birthday, SMS breakup…)
• I have to search for what usage of these media make them human “authentic”
• Observe users, imagine strategies to observe them. e.g. ask what is your most remembered SMS in the past week (that I can copy)