Work and leisure. Isn't it one? So strange we only get paid by our 'work'. Fromout leisure (where the word 'learning' comes from) we learn. Our action (the form, the quality of our action) comes fromout learning. Still leisure is something we have to work f...
"In a gift culture, social media and mobile tech is an extension of your tribal self."
"When we weave together strangers and turn them into a tribe,
we create real value, value that lasts."
"Online community is where we rediscover tribal dynamics."
"Tribal dynamics enables dynamic narrative realignment."
"Meaningful connectivity augmented by semantic search combined with tribal dynamics can be leveraged for placemaking."
Placemaking is a multi-faceted approach to the planning, design and management of public spaces. Placemaking capitalizes on a local community’s assets, inspiration, and potential, ultimately creating good public spaces that promote people’s health, happiness, and well being. Placemaking is both a process and a philosophy.
Social media as gift culture: the reputation game
"Don’t think of your followers as judges. Think of them as your tribe. Yes, they implicitly judge your contributions. Yet, for the most part, they value your gifts. Think of yourself as a tribal chief, competing for status in a virtual Potlatch. The crowd is there to witness your gifts, not to judge and condemn them. Your goal is to enrich your tribe with whatever gifts you have to offer.
Play the reputation game. Celebrate the virtual Potlatch and give."
Social media as gift culture: sharing circles and tribes
"In sharing content online, we are playing a reputation game. The object of the game is not to beat other players but to challenge them to greater expressions of generosity. It is a battle of abundant spirits that contributes to the common good."
Social media as gift culture: the prismatic self
"The solution is to find your tribe. Sharing across multiple channels is easier when we share with our tribes in mind. A thriving tribe gives back more than we contribute to it. Tribes are a living reservoir of cognitive capital and an infinite human resource."
Social media as gift culture: building tribes
"Tribal curators add value to stories and content simply by virtue of sharing them."
Learning Platform angle:
Semantic Search angle:
Others were cc'ed as well, see original thread here:
Comments from the original thread:
I have a very hard time with competing for status.
A deeply meaningful observation about both tribal dynamics and society at large +Eve A - is there a way to look differently at eg social media with this in mind?
+John Kellden Worth reading, and sharing! Psychological, Sociological, & Philosophical. 1'd all the series of posts for my future reference. This has made my day! Thanks a ton.
I agree with the tribal aspect of SM, +John Kellden , although I prefer a more inclusive world view and wish for a world where tribal thinking belongs to the past. It's an utopic wish, I know.
Deeply and truly appreciated +Munaz Anjum you are good people, and it is an honour to have connected with you.
Unbeknownst to both of us, we might be in agreement +Eve A
We both know that parts of the old narrative is not only beyond its expiry date, it is beginning to smell a bit funny as well.
As you've already hinted, there might be a future narrative, a more inclusive world view, just around the corner, if only we would help each other with the wayfinding.
This is why I see the proliferation of (digital, online) tribes as a transitional narrative, a large diverse narrative solution space, out of which Cambrian evolution, our own future might unfold. Or so I like to think...
Old -> Transition -> New
I have developed a resistance to the term "Tribe" when it comes to digital community. Overuse? Dys-analogy? I'm not sure.
A good creative tension there +Kevin von Duuglas-Ittu have you thought about possible ways this resistance could be resolved, and if so, into what?
I'm really not sure? Some thoughts: I came to Twitter through #usguys - a 24/hr hashtag that talked a lot about "Tribe". It was tribe this, and tribe that. And the tag flourished like crazy for a while, even with some traditions, before it became overcome with market-chasing, traffic-chasing pursuits and burnout. I have done a fair amount of theorizing about Gift Economies, with the natural extension to what are taken to be "primitive" "tribal" cultures -- but I feel like the word and the analogy is just tossed around too loosely, that people don't really appreciate the cement (and really the strong social restrictions) that create tribes, that tribes are places of great memory and constraint...really of traditions. There is something about tribe talk when describing digital communities that both goes too far, and not far enough. I do think Gift Economy logic drives a great deal of Social Media community, but Gift Economy logic isn't resolvable into "tribes" and it isn't just a gift-fest. I suppose that my feeling is that if we are going to use tribes we need proper, attention to detail ethnographic thinking/analysis. Otherwise it feels like we are just saying "Hey, we're unique, we're a tribe!" In a sense it feels like digital has passed or is passing out of its tribal phase, and into a platform and marketing phase.
I'm truly grateful for your thoughts +Kevin von Duuglas-Ittu my hunch is there's a whole lot of people "out there" who feel similarly about a whole lot of words being usurped, distorted, perverted in order to pay hommage to the Demi God of Traffic.
Which to me means we need to remember how words can be used, we can choose to engage in conversations. Real conversations.
How to tell real conversations apart from marketing disguised as conversations?
By their fruits? By inferring the intention? Let's help each other figure this out...
Btw, for clarity, I'm not at all against marketing, buying and selling things are fine. We're learning what's what all the time - tribal dynamics can, if we want to, be used to help each other in this regard as well...
+John Kellden One stat I heard at SMX is that we now have more mobile devices on this planet then we have people. These device play a big role in bringing people online in areas of the world where computers just don't fit in (like your photo).
+Eric Enge thanks! To me this is good news, the opportunity for offering great services making a real difference is right here, right now. Question is, are we ready and willing to step up?
In an attempt of outlining one part of what I'm offering: Intention as a Service - it's basically consulting, with some small subtle differences.
Which means I'm constantly curious about the intention of other people, and if there's any way I can help others to grow increasingly clear about how to rediscover their own intentions, continuously iterated, informed and evolved by what impact they've measured, what insights they've gleaned and what impact, what legacy they would want to leave behind.
Great stuff +John Kellden. So much gold here but I particularly love "Tribal dynamics enables dynamic narrative realignment."
We can only tell the legends and myths that underpin our identity, our society and our reality in the tribal milieu. Campfires are a proven venue, agora and town squares have played their part.
The real social revolution of the internet is creating authentic tribal gatherings where these stories can be told again - rediscovering, refreshing or reinventing the meaning of being human.
Love your intro in your reshare +Dallas McMillan - even though we only meet "here" through digital affordances, the presence and meaning and value from comparing notes through sharing stories, thereby enriching each other and then leave, the thread, the gathering, better equipped for the rest of our journey - this is as real as any campfire.
I still meet lots of people who don't like to engage in social media "because it's not real, and it's not possible to do stuff" - one of my questions to these people is often - "do you like TV, do you sometimes read books or magazines?"
If they don't particularly like to do anything media related, I wish them a fond farewell, no hard feelings.
If they say, why yes, I do!
I tell them this social media thing is like tv and media, only slightly more real.
That's a great answer +John Kellden, I'll definitely remember it. It really deserves a post of it's own.
I'm glad for social media because I might never meet you IRL but you're a daily inspiration here - so devoted to the conversation.
I had a realisation the other day that when we are networking, or building our network, it isn't our network really, it is the network - increased connectedness of mind, with all the new potential that entails.
+Kevin von Duuglas-Ittu I agree that "tribe" is very often misused. However, it does hold academic worth and meaning within Consumer Culture Theory, a marketing school of thought interested in studying consumption choices and behaviours. You will find a lot of scientific research about postmodern tribes within CCT which does not lend itself to simply being "trendy". Tribes are sometimes confused with subcultures and brand communities, but within CCT they are 3 distinct things.
That's a really helpful and valuable addition +Elia Mörling - I definitely need to grok this better myself as well, particularly how CCT relates to sensemaking.
See if I can weave in another strand in the thread - +Seth Godin is only touching upon what I believe is of the utmost importance:
How can we weave strangers together? is it through extending trust? Is it through relying on the #veracity dimension of semantic search? Is it through #vulnerability ? Can all these qualities be gamed? if so, can we reclaim them, and how do we do that?
Great post thank you +John Kellden I've dropped by for a moment and happened to see your ping. I'm looking at ghastly purple stained hands dancing across the keyboard, piles of grapes still not done but the mountain is finally shrinking :)
I read the points you made, and so far, the post about 'the reputation game'. As for competition, I see I am, as usual, more than 2 standard deviations from mean. What are we competing for? Do we write about subjects that endear us to others or do we need to write about what matters to us?
Am I rebel when I write about topics I know are edgy and push the boundaries that could and do push me away from my 'tribe(s)'? Or is it that I see the need for conversation that transcends current mindset?
We are locked into programmes that do not serve us because we are unwilling to accept or even consider what has not been approved by the 'tribe'.
We don't want to be poked into directions that cannot be measured and fit neatly into our equations.
I see this polarization in politics, in science and many areas. People I know only pay attention to 'their channels' and never even look at others; decry other concepts without the least bit of earnest study ... they cannot listen to or look at other views. They fear something... perhaps it is 'tribe' alienation which is a form of bullying. There is an arrogance amongst some 'tribes' that is suffocating them.
The challenge is in the unlearning. Can we let go?
We need to cultivate acceptance, compassion, and empathy. Comradery is far more important than competition.
Perhaps this was the job for the village shaman... to spot the ills and help cure them.
Dare to be different, dare to be you.
... like in the opening credits monologue for the Starship Enterprise "To boldly go where no one has gone before!"
"Buried deep within you, beneath all the years of pain and anger, there is something that has never been nurtured: the potential to make yourself a better man. And that is what it is to be human. To make yourself more than you are. Oh, yes — I know you. There was a time you looked at the stars and dreamed of what might be." Jean-Luc Picard captain of the USS Enterprise-D and the Enterprise-E.
In a Tribe everyone is a co-creator of value. And not just any kind of value. It really goes beyond the value we share with our tribal brothers and sisters. It's an extended value that potentially can impact a larger group than the Tribe. The effort also cover a much longer perspective than the existence of the Tribe itself. It's the co-creation of meaning that binds the Tribe together in a joint effort to create a deeper and more lasting sense of value.
Thanks +Elia Mörling . I guess I would say thar 99.99% of digital community tribe reference in the ether is not reference to CCT theory, and that nearly nobody that uses the analogy has heard of it. But I would be very interested in the succint CCT academic definition of "tribe"...do you have one?
Your whole post is a gem +Pamela Wang and more, a wake-up call, a CTA, Call To Action: #unlearning - needless to say, thanks ever so much for being here.
My pleasure and thank you +John Kellden and all others for their comments.
Brilliant +Jan Friman - could we work our way towards a working definition of #socialleadership in this thread?
"Through conversations about things that matter in a community there's an ongoing, evolving cocreation of value, where social leadership is performed by individuals assuming responsibility as well as by the group following."
A bit wordy, but getting there...
How about Pods and SuperPods? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolphin#Social_behavior
Then maybe we could explore the #tribality of #podliving , which may gravitate toward .the #sharingeconomy discourse? Or we could continue engaging the tribe-as-narrative string. Pardon my #vulnerability if I just don't know what to suggest on this one,
Awaiting +Elia Mörling 's response, here's a CCT pdf:
Those are good parallell, divergent lines of inquiry +Dan Durrant - chances are #nemetics beyond being a Tribe in its own write, could be used to translate back and forth between tribes as well - which might then form part of addressing +Seth Godin 's weaving strangers - concern.
+Dan Durrant feel free to add pointers to nemetics here in this thread...
Thank you +John Kellden - Happy that you mention #socialleadership since that is a passion of mine : )
A key part of this definition I think has to do with 'personal leadership' and what I refer to as 'community based leadership' - meaning that leadership per se expands from one single individual, to the group as a coherent whole, or leadership team. Maybe we could refer to it as 'co-created leadership'?
This type of leadership is something that we are promoting in our new startup, which works surprisingly well. Or maybe not 'surprisingly' - it's actually rooted in common sense. People wish to lead themselves and together we can lead each other in a more sensible way. A key ingredient towards achieving co-created leadership is that people in the group not only listen well, but actually hear and fundamentally understand what the others are trying to communicate. Absolutely vital!
We have noticed that with this basic mindset the productivity and creativity explodes. We agree on a common game plan and common goals and encourage each individual to promote their best efforts and ideas which everyone happily can decide to ride along with, at least for the moment. Of course everything that we decide can change and change rapidly, but that's not a negative thing, rather an opportunity. Go with the flow so to speak.
What we learnt is that if we create a positive atmosphere where people actually deeply enjoy what their doing and we jointly create the context of meaning, then everyone get their 'leadership hat' on and deliver towards a wished-for-outcome.
Maybe we could also refer to this philosophy, or basic guidelines, as 'Lean Leadership' since it gets inspiration from how we build a business utilizing the tools of a Business Model Generation and Lean Startup philosophy.
An innovative way of looking at a tribe that works as a startup as well +Jan Friman - try as I might, I couldn't punch any holes in your resoning. Good stuff!
Thinking out loud here, could the deeper parts of this organizing, tribal, social DNA (yeah, I know, dreadful word :) ) - be rooted in a Swedish culture?
If so, could this be something we could package and export, for others to learn from?
And, no, before any outrage, I don't mean to imply Sweden is better. But perehaps we're different. Perhaps even good different. A difference that makes a difference...
Okay- I'll pipe in with the "naive" voice - the unscholarly voice. I like the sound and feel of the theories. They are even exciting, but they are still new to me.
In real life, the physical one out here where touch is part of it, my closest circle of friends (and that is ever-fluid, btw) has used the word 'tribe' for decades. We use it to name something very dear. Tribe as home. Tribe as describing the humans who understand who we are and let us be who we are.Tribe as safety and the place where we feel safe. Tribe as in they don't think we are Other. We have each others' backs so to speak. The people we know share with us in.....+Kevin von Duuglas-Ittu: memory and tradition.
There is no question for me that I have located my tribe in this online community. With +John Kellden and others. Like in RL it is ever-fluid and not exclusionary. +Pamela Wang: comradery.
For me, there has been something in every single one of these comments that has resonated and made my heart swell up with contentment to be here with you. To be part of this. +John Kellden you. Did that. Again.
Hate to disappoint you +John Kellden but Swedes in general tend to suffer the same pains as everyone else's trails and tribulations ;)
However I believe Swedes have unique circumstances in which they can grow and create awesome stuff.
Sweden and Swedes as a community provide an extremely supportive context for creating new and innovative mindsets. Maybe Swedes are more curious, I don't know - or maybe it's simply the cold that keeps us moving, filing our lungs with relatively unpolluted air that get their brains buzzin' and creatin' an infinite flow of imaginative and mindblowing ideas :)
But not only that - Swedes tend to not stop at just an idea but actually comes out producing good qualitative products and services - mostly with a strong sustainable approach. We are not many (9 million folks) but we many do have a strong wish to make a dent in the universe... Sorry, Googleverse ;)
Same same but different, right +Jan Friman ? :)
Exactly +John Kellden :)
Great post +John Kellden and great thoughts +Kevin von Duuglas-Ittu +Dallas McMillan
I also think we sometimes abuse terms in the social media space. Did tribes of old think of themselves as tribes? Probably not, but they would meet by the campfire and regroup, share in a kind of untold but common purpose, tell some stories, and get ready for the next day, which would bring its lot of different activities, hunting, tending to the young or old, and get ring ready to move on
I think as we explore this new reality, we behave as we used to when we were #nomads . In that sense, This Community is à tribe to which it is good to come back after the hunting and fighting are over.
The légends though, are not conveyed only through words, but also through This use that we collectively make of the platform and that si an #emergence in itself
Which si why I think our qualities could be gamed, but real sharing needs learning the language and the culture of the platform, which is get ring deeper every day. It Will not be gamed, ans my question would be what #responsibility do we accept for passing on what we've learned ?
Love your whole post +Gina Fiedel
How can we design a platform for "tribes" or "social media", or whatever this is, that breaks up long conversations somehow so that I can catch up when I wake up to one that's been going for three hours?
I appreciate +Kevin von Duuglas-Ittu saying "There is something about tribe talk when describing digital communities that both goes too far, and not far enough." Because that captures my feeling as well. Still, I can accept the term with a new as yet poorly defined meaning which departs from the established anthropological use.
I also appreciate +Jan Friman redefining leadership, which is a word that has always made the hair on the back of my neck stand up, to a definition that does not, which could very well be the definition to "tribe" that I'm looking for.
Creating Extended Value for the Tribe
Some weaving here: I believe the "conversation that transcends current mindset" +Pamela Wang is often the "extended value that potentially can impact a larger group than the Tribe" +Jan Friman.
I would say that the temptation is to then become too meta about each conversation and then the competition ensues of who can be more meta? instead of who can create extended value.
Of course, there's naturally a strong tension in this word. In my psyche, it's an oxymoron in a lot of ways, but as a great builder of scaffolds +John Kellden rightly maintains the sometimes scathing word Leadership. Perhaps, the succinct definition is "together we can lead each other in a more sensible way" (+Jan Friman). This is far different than a Chief that from my understanding (please do correct me if needed) Chiefs are typically authoritarian and play further into the leadership pattern of the past instead of the emerging co-leadership, probably one of the issues I have with tribe in it's social/modern context +Kevin von Duuglas-Ittu (the seeming disregard for the often strict societal norms that tribes require).
The perspective though is still that people need leading, which I'm not sure that they do. Products need leading, Culture/Atmosphere needs leading, Policy/Procedure needs leading, but "People wish to lead themselves."
I really like that weaving, summation +Michael Erwin - I'm working on finding synergic overlap between hierarchy and heterarchy for a bunch of reasons, one which would make for "smoother" transition. This is difficult and complex, since the transition is also a narrative, or, if you ask me, a whole multitude of tribal narratives, loosely coupled,
Certainly #betweennarratives +John Kellden
Good to have you here weighing in +Travis Wellman it's been too long.
Your touching upon timely, contextual cues - would love to see such functionality in the future distributed, distributable platforms.
In a way, this is what is already happening in most digital tribes through emergent folksonomies, but, since this is mostly tacit, unwritten, it risks turning incrowd, exclusionary.
We need (digital) tribes, and, we need meaningful connectivity between tribes as well.
I'd love to form a small editing committee, and design a #patternlanguage for an extendable #folksonomy - eventually enabling us to be agnostic with regards to (proprietary) platforms...
so many gems in here +John Kellden and in all the posts above. My first thoughts were on the lines of +Gina Fiedel I use the word tribe to denote people with whom I feel I can express myself freely. And I am in many tribes here in my physical life, and I am now feeling that this place is one of them. I have no problem with words being usurped and used in multiple contexts, that is the nature of words and language. And that's what's so "cool" about it. Tribes and tribal have different meanings in different times and different places and sometimes there is a narrow specific scientific type meaning. And then there is the free for all that gets created in peoples imaginations.
I love the idea of challenging to creater generosity. This is all tying into that lovely book The Gift that was recommended by Gina. Gifts on so many levels.
Visual gifts, posts that spark the visual imagination, intellectual gifts, posts that make me feel like I'm a five year old entering a school for the first time, emotional gifts, people sharing their hearts. This is what makes a tribe for me.
This is pivotal:
"...so many gems in here."
To have a thread in a public stream feel inviting and inclusive enough, affording such a magnificent gathering of minds, hearts and typing fingers. This is all we need to know. The intention, the signal was clear enough for this to emerge. Now we know this is possible. Now we can begin to design what patterns, what affordances, what designs, what scaffolds needs to be in place, for this to become second nature, and for us to adapt to and adopt a habit of thinking and typing well together.
Not wanting to close the thread at all, I'd be happy with this getting a gazillion comments, towards an infinite tapestry and canvas. However, this, here, if it is good, deserves to be replicated, distributed, shared and evolved.
“These involve groups of citizens that find innovative ways to express themselves by developing a new way of thinking about everyday life while putting these ideas into action. The main objective of these networks is self- sufficiency and gaining control over factors or situations in order to improve everyday life.
Working with a swarm requires you to do a lot of things completely opposite from what you learn at an archetypal business school. You need to release the control of your brand and its messages. You need to delegate authority to the point where anybody can make almost any decision for the entire organization. You need to accept and embrace that people in the organization will do exactly as they please, and the only way to lead is to inspire them to want to go where you want the organization as a whole to go.
It is only as you release that control, the kind of control that organizations and managers have held close toheart for centuries, that you can reap the benefits of the swarm: the same cost-efficiency advantage and execution-speed advantage against the competition that the Swedish Pirate Party enjoyed. This book will teach you those methods, from the initial forming of the swarm to its growth and ongoing maintenance and delivery. It will not teach you the underlying theory of psychology and sociology — merely share experiences and methods that have been proven to work in practice.
“Living is a form of not being sure, not knowing what next or how. The moment you know how, you begin to die a little. The artist never entirely knows. We guess. We may be wrong but we take leap after leap in the dark.” Agnes de Mille
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