Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Predicting the Future of Social Networking in 2012

2012 will be the year for alternative social networks like Anybeat.
An interesting point that was brought up in a recent Forbes article on megatrends in social media for 2012 was the growing importance of our roles as curators and transmitters of online content. As inconsequential as posting a interesting news link or linking a video to our friends and family may seem to be, it is this process that is fast becoming a major online ecosystem in which corporations are starting to invest time and money into.

Corporate and marketing focus aside, social media and the Internet has also played an important part in organizing and supporting protests and revolutions around the world in 2011, and our roles as transmitters of online news and videos of events were key to the unprecedented global spread of political awareness. This trend will continue in 2012, and the rise of alternative social networks will continue to expand our roles as curators of online content.

I believe that in 2012 people will move on from Facebook and Google+ and increasingly use alternate communities and social networks to share and find online content. All of us are interested in what our friends and favorite personalities have to share, but the world is much bigger than our direct networks can encompass, and people are increasingly discovering the limitations of friend-only social networks. For our roles as content transmitters to evolve, the tools why which we use to share and find the content also need to evolve as well.

Reddit and Digg have paved the way for sharing content between strangers in 2011, but they are burdened with issues of online trolling and trustworthiness issues since content is shared by anonymous users. There are a lot of great content shared on those sites, but finding content based upon what you are interested in often requires digging through mountains of virtual trash. In 2012 and beyond, it will be new social networks like Anybeat that emphasize pseudonymous online networking leading the evolution of social networking and content sharing.

With networks and sites like Anybeat that use pseudonymous online identities instead of anonymous postings, it is possible to share content and interact with people outside of traditional friend networks while keeping the authentic interactions from those networks. With traditional content providers becoming more adept at reaching out to those that share and consume content, which John Titlow explored in his online article on the intertwining relationship of television and social media on readwriteweb.com, the importance of these pseudonymous social networks which allow users to have greater reach will grow.

People will continue to use services such as Facebook and Reddit for a long time to come, but our roles as curators and transmitters of online content will evolve in other social networks and services. How fast people will embrace other alternative methods to sharing and finding content will remain to be seen, but 2011 has definitely proven that giants such as Facebook and Google do not have all the solutions.

No comments:

Post a Comment