I feel like a pinata when something happens and I have to react with a blogpost. Saturday was case in point when while the premise of Huffington Post and Fred Wilson's article about would we pay for Facebook was true today, it made me respond. Because I wouldn't pay for Facebook now because it sucks as a network, but there was a time before all the Brand and Marketing pollution when I would of. When many of us would have. LINK
Now Osama Bin Laden. Last night there was the announcement that President Obama had a press conference scheduled. I learned during the Mets vs Philly's baseball game on TV. I then went to Huffington Post and saw Bin Laden is Dead but no story. I then went to Twitter and saw the chatter.
Someone who is very well known in Social Media sent a Tweet stating Twitter trounced for the story. Then he posted a blog post about it. I got pissed because of many reasons.
1] He didn't know this or could prove it. Not at that time. Maybe never. And how many knew who had to sit on it because they wanted to know it was true vs Twitter where we libel all the time with lies, rumors, hate, etc (just check the hashtag #TCOT)
2] I learned from TV first
3] 96.7% of the US was not on Twitter yesterday. How many were on at 10pm EST? I had Twitter in a Tab on FireFox but was viewing something else.
4] During the Philly game the crowd found out before any announcement and started chanting USA USA! Yes Philly fans are dumb. They acted like that kid you beat up every day for 10 years who then you wipe out on your bike and they come running over to taunt you saying they won. I mean your bragging after this guy took down the Twin Freaking Towers! He humiliated us for ten years and suckered this country into bankruptcy and some heinous behaviors in wartime and the destruction of the fabric of American cohesiveness. I think not only does Osama Bin Laden win. He should be buried with Ali's Boxing Belts. Hell throw in Fraziers and Tysons as well.
But I want to focus on the crowd. Because Gini Dietrich posted a well crafted blogpost that Social Media was definitely a news facilitator and I agree. It only took a few people in the Philly crowd to see a Tweet, a Facebook update, get an SMS Text or Phone Call to have the whole crowd know really quickly. But I will bet the bank 95% of the fans learned by verbal communication from their neighbors in the stands. No different than how things spread in Egypt or Tunisia. It only takes a few well located people with access to others to get a message moving. Even if very few are using Social Media or Mobile Technologies.
Interestingly enough as proof of Social Media and Technologies lack of reach. The announcers kept mentioning the Phillies in the doug out were clueless about why the chants for USA were going on. And not just for a minute. For a whole half an inning! None of those people have phones? There wasn't one support person in the clubhouse watching TV? No coach in a booth watching the TV feed for coaching purposes?
So since not just most I bet 80-90% of the US learned about Osama Bin Laden outside of Social Media. And some people knew before others. And all these people are pushing real time web like it matters like the person who got me riled up last night.
Why do so many Social Media people need validation of the importance of Social Media even when it's not that important? They rubber stamp events without critical research or proof. And often over stuff that doesn't matter.
This was not life and death. This proves the fallacy of the REAL TIME WEB being worthless most of the time. If I learned 10 minutes later than you WHO CARES? Are you that much of a stuck up whiny geek that you want to brag you knew before me? I have found VERY FEW examples of where REAL TIME WEB is more important than ALMOST REAL TIME WEB. And they are so few and so rare.....WHO CARES? The ones I have found are important ones like if I was trading stocks. But most people will never benefit in almost all instances.