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Wikileaks: next phase in social media
December, 2010

 

Is the whole circus around Wikileaks a hype? I don't think so. Governments corporations and other organizations will have to adapt to a new world where we communicate different and secrets will no longer exist.

The attention of the media, and thus the world, has been centered too much on the hackers who attacked credit card companies and other institutions that acted against Wikileaks, making it look like an action of teenagers wracking havoc on the internet. However, the real fight is between organizations trying to contain information and the public in general, striving for freedom of information. Is this just a hype, happening by coincidence, because one soldier in the American army decided to bring secrets into the open?

To my idea what is happening with Wikileaks is a natural next phase in the social media revolution. If it hadn't been Wikileaks, then sooner or later it would have been another site or person divulging government or corporate secrets. The social media revolution has changed the way we communicate and the way we look at information. We expect organizations to be totally transparent and we "punish" organizations that are not, by trashing them on social media sites and blacklisting their products. Privacy is quickly diminishing because of how we communicate and present ourselves online and we expect the same, or actually more from companies and other organizations.

I expect a lot of people will say that diplomats and democratic governments need secrets to be able to do their job successfully and to safeguard the public. However, this is old-fashioned thinking and all those organizations will have to adapt to a new world; a world where few things can be kept secret for a long time; a world where most people in society will strive to unveil secrets and make them public knowledge.

Does this mean that governments will collapse? No of course not! Like everybody else who has a negative experience because of what was willingly or unknowingly published in Facebook, people in governmental organizations will have to adapt their behavior and the way they work, to avoid situations like the one we have with Wikileaks right now. In the end, most secrets are about negative, shameful, unethical or criminal behavior. The world could be a far better place without them.

I am extremely interested in your opinion about the above.
Do you agree that all information should be public? Do you think that Wikileaks is a good development? Or do you have another opinion?
 
 
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  BOOK REVIEWS
Some of my personal remarks and opinion on books related to social media marketing:

"Socialnomics" How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do Business, by Erik Qualman

 

"New rules of PR & Marketing" How to Use Social Media, Blogs, News Releases, Online Video, and Viral Marketing to Reach Buyers Directly, by David Meerman Scott

 
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