Davos Annual Meeting 2010 – The Growing Influence of Social Networks

Davos Annual Meeting 2010 – The Growing Influence of Social Networks

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I’m Loic Le Meur and I’ll be
moderating this plenary session. And I’ve been asked to wait another
two minutes? We can go? Okay let’s go then.
So welcome everyone. I’m going to have the pleasure
to be your moderator today and we have an amazing group, social software leaders so if I may ask
from Peter who is here. We have Gina Bianchini
from Ning right there, Gina; George Colony
from Forrester Research, George; Reid Hoffman, LinkedIn; who is
the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the…;
we have Mousa Musa here, a Global Changemaker
from the British Council and Global Changemaker from Iraq…;
Owen Van Natta from MySpace right here; and Don Tapscott who is the
Chairman of nGenera. Welcome. And so I’m the founder
of a company that’s called Seesmic
which covers most of all the social networks. So here’s the format of the session. We will hand every
we’ll have the social software leaders introduce in a few minutes what
they think of the three questions and mostly how are social
networks changing society, so that’s what we’re
talking about today. And we would like to have you
all share a few thoughts, a few minutes,
first room-wide and then we will break
into table conversations so every table will analyze those
three questions so let me give you three questions. How are social networks
changing in society? First question. We have a standing up table here. Yeah, you’re a – so if there is another
table which is a virtual standing table. We have to tweet each other. You can tweet,
absolutely. What are the most important implications
and risks of society? So we also talk about the negative
aspects, that’s the second question. Again what are the most important
implications and risks for society? And the third question
is what should individuals and institutions,
what should we do, to leverage our social networks
in the future? So now is it changing society,
what are the most important implications and the risks
and what should we all do, including institutions, to make sure
that we leverage that power to change and improve the world rather than
run the risks that come? And so we will do that until 9:50,
that’s plenty of time, that’s actually two hours in total,
and at 9:50 I will ask every table, including the standing table too,
to report on your conversations. It can be the discussion leader
or you can get anyone at the table, it doesn’t have to be you read,
it can be anyone. And we will also…
with social software session, we also have plenty of questions
on the internet so we have a… computer which is Davos social
and we can see the tweets here, we’ll have a look at them,… That’s interesting software
you have around here. Thank you very much. It’s out of date… and we will also have Davos questions
from YouTube so Steve, where is Steve,
Steve is right there, he’s going to give us
so that we have a video going running on YouTube which will
where we ask people to have questions and participate also so we’ll have that
and probably run… as well. It can be from
any social software post as well. So that’s the plan for today,
first hour on the table, second on the – on room-wide
conversation with people in the internet. So with that I would like
to ask George Colony if you want to start sharing with us
what Forrester has for us in terms of social software. I should use the mike,
Loic? Oh by the way,
I should have simply said yes, we are – so we’re live also on the
internet so everything is on record, it’s coming from
that little computer here. Software quality is not the
best but it’s live,… Just to let you know that there are no
secrets here for two hours, everything is live. What’s the address to tweet? It’s – I’ll give it to you right now,
just go to /Davos… But we should use a mike,
right? Yes please. So I’m George Colony,
I’m the CEO of Forrester Research. How’s that?
Hear me? Yeah.
Great. So I’m George Colony,
I’m the CEO of Forrester and I’ve got the boring job
of giving you some data on the social networking world
to get it started. Of the 15 most trafficked sites in the
world 7 of them are social sites and if you wonder why Apple
is announcing the iPad… call it today we now spend between five
and six hours per day on media, that is, the second biggest human
activity after sleeping. So we are – we all understand
that we’re very social. Of the major social sites,
these is a measure of unique visitors:
Twitter’s got 25 million and that’s been flat
for about the last six months so that Twitter came up
to a really fast curve and has been flat;
Facebook has 130 million users, unique visitors per day
is again flat for the last six months; MySpace
is 50 to 60 unique visitors per day and that is down considerably
in the last six months; LinkedIn about 15 million
and that is up; and Ning about six million,
that’s down in the last six months. And that’s all… right? Yeah,
those are not Forrester numbers. Yeah and actually the…
as our two hours progress. The social networking
is far from ubiquitous, if you look at the United States,
the visit to social networking sites, at least daily,
is only 70% of online users, so 70% of online users
will consult a social site per day and that’s a sample
of about 5000 US online adults. And a very, very – this is of course
very different per age group so if you look at 18- to 24-year-olds,
27% of them will consult a social site everyday;
25- to 34-year-olds 24%; and then 35- to 44-year-olds 18%;
45- to 54-year-olds 12%; 55- to 64-year-olds 9%; and 65
or older is 6%, so a very fast drop off. We are unable to do surveys
on individuals younger than 18 but we believe that in fact
that number is almost doubled for the young adult under 18.
Yeah, Mike? Does that include mobile for no? I’ll repeat the question,
does that include mobile or not? It does. and then my last bit of data
which is Europeans reading blogs, this is online Europeans, 54% will
frequently consult a blog in Europe; 46% no, and at least daily
is only 12% in Europe, so the number is smaller than the US. And my last, last bit data is
this is customer interaction with retailers via social blogs,
we’re talking about Best Buy, the number of online consumers
consulting a corporate blog is only 1%, the trust level for the blogs
is actually quite low. However the number
of online consumers becoming a fan or following is approximately 8%. So a lot more followers
of corporate than there are individuals consulting
the blogs of corporations. So that’s my data to get it started,
I will say one thing before I sit down and that is that we believe that one
of the most important aspects of social, when it comes to corporations,
Forrester is in the business of primarily studying
how large corporations are affected by these trends,
we believe that a major trend will be called social stigma,
so you all know what’s social stigma, which is the idea
of the corporations will use social primarily
to improve their products. Sick stigma is the gradual improvement
or process to improve products. We believe that social will be used
by corporations to get feedback from their customers to improve
the price, we call that social stigma. So that’s will get it started. Very good. -Any questions? Any criticism?
– I don’t want any of that. Okay, that’s it.
– Okay, thank you. All right.
Thank you very much George. We’re glad to have those numbers. Reid Hoffman,
founder of LinkedIn, will now share with us his thoughts
about the social networks and changing society. I think the principal goal here is
to set up few… in the conversation we’re having
per table and then to the room and so as opposed to data,
I actually will be kind of closing some kind of framework
pertaining to this and since you never know what
the different level of expertise is, some of you might…
but my apologies. So part of what’s going on in terms
of the whole – the social networking phenomena as part of what is frequently
referred to as the Web 2.0 trend. The weird thing about Web 2.0 is what
happens when every person has an identity online
and is a participant either in terms of sharing or publishing and what are
the applications that come out of that. There’s a variety of applications,
at least three different areas, that are particularly interesting,
kind of social, media, and professional. Social is things like
when they’re all sharing photographs or other things with a small group
of people, usually friends, family, some kind of trust group;
media is publishing to the world where essentially
every one is for instance everyone’s a journalist,
everyone’s a magazine and those sorts of things as a way
of establishing kind of a global channel; and then professional
is finding expertise and information
to solve professional tasks. And what the themes are
that the folks generally in social sites talk about is how do you
get kind of robust connections between people, how do you get
transparency of information and the people in order to be able
to solve these kinds of applications, whether it’s sharing or gaming
or finding channels of expertise, and then how do you facilitate
that in a way that essentially causes the entire system to do much
more informationally efficient. And it’s the ability for everyone
to be expressing identity and to be publishing
that allows for a very robust and rich information source
to be generated. And what you use on these friends’
lists or following lists or other kinds of things is a way
of configuring your own particular part of the space because obviously
when you have millions or hundreds of millions of people
participating in publishing, even if you wanted
to try to read everything, you wouldn’t manage to do it. And so when you think about
these questions in terms of whether the implications
I’ll say a few things they’ve been saying over
the years because I think it might be
particularly useful for this audience, I actually don’t think there’s
much in the way of risks. One of the things I said a couple
of years ago in a magazine conference was that all the concerns
about privacy, this is my guess, she asked me
about this a couple of weeks ago, all these concerns about privacy
tend to be all people issues. If you actually look at most young
people using Facebook, etc, they put their cellphones on the profile,
and it may be a little less these days, but really where that more substantially
is a question of the value of being connected
and transparent is so high that the road bumps of kind
of privacy issues are much lower in actual
experience than people see it and that’s the reason
why it kind of trends that way. And so when we consider these questions,
the thing we should think about is how do you use the fact
that everyone’s present information and transparency and how do you get
a lot of benefit out of that with essentially diminished risk,
I think that would be a good frame and with that I’ll sit down
and pass the mike. All right.
Thank you, Reid. And so you can see also a few cameras
on the tables, these are not to be taken, these are to be used later on
so that we can record your thoughts on the second part of the session
and then tweet them and upload them on YouTube. Owen from MySpace,
Owen Van Natta, maybe – I think you have a few idas
to share with us especially under MySpace perspective. Sure.
Thank you. I generally agree with
a lot of the way that Reid has framed up what’s happening
in the social web and my viewpoint is that the web
is increasingly becoming social, meaning that we’re going
to experience all the things that we do on the internet
with other people, this is very much like what exists
in the real world today, we want to go
and experience communications, media,
content with other people. The impact of this is essentially
having on society and then trying to frame
this up for discussion, if you think about
how the social web has evolved and of the elements that Reid talked
about in terms of identity and ability for people to publish
and communicate and have that all be part of the fabric
of your web experience as opposed to an experience
where you’re consuming content and doing communications
in two separate actions. Really what I think what
that is doing is causing us to more efficiently be able to
consume media through other people as opposed to just through
a limited number of sources, whether it’s portals
or other new sources. I think the impact
that this is starting to have on media and you think
about some of the metrics that George shared with us
is that we’re finding increasingly that distribution of content
is happening much more through people as opposed to through
these destinations or portals. And the implication on society
is interesting in that I’m now able to engage in my media consumption,
in my content consumption with other people
that I never was able to before, much like the internet connected me
to people that I was never connected to in the real world
before the internet was available and email was so prevalent. And the way that we are thinking
about this at MySpace and how it is that we’re looking
to serve the users of MySpace in regard to this
is we see a huge amount of activity around key areas of content consumption
like music, entertainment, film and TV, games, all of these areas are starting
to explode in terms of usage and growth because you can have
such a richer experience when you’re able to experience
these things with other people than you were before
the social web started to evolve and it was much less
of a social experience. We think it really maps directly
to the way the real world works which is I go to rock concerts
and I want to experience that with other people who have
similar tastes in that type of music, in that band. I go to theaters to experience
that content, to consume that media
with other people. And I think that the social web
is finally evolving to the point where I’m able to do
that in a massive way online and do it like we can
with the internet without the geographic barriers
that exist in the real world. And I think that’s going to continue and if you look at just the growth
of the social web overall, I think it will permeate every single
area of what we do on the internet and even unlock new areas as well. And I also to echo Reid’s thoughts
in terms of impact on society, I think it has a very positive
impact on society and I don’t think there’s
a huge amount of downside and it’s always going to be things
that need to be managed in terms of controls in privacy
and security and how it is that we think about that
and giving people controls. But the beautiful thing about technology and the internet
is that we can build those things and we can extend
them to people very easily and maybe even more importantly we can
continually evolve those things in a way that evolve with the needs
of society, with the needs of people and enable this movement
to continue at. So those are my thoughts
and I think this is going to be a very, very interesting conversation. Thank you very much Owen. In the meantime since we started talking
I have the pleasure to announce that we have Randi Zuckerberg
of Facebook right here with us who just arrived so Randi
will share a few thoughts with us a little later
and just sit yourself. I just wanted to introduce you. And also for everyone
watching us on the internet, quite a few people tagged Davos social
will be used to gather what the virtual room is saying. And with that I would like to have
Gina Bianchini of Ning to share a few thoughts with us. Hi, my name is Gina Bianchini
and I run a company called Ning which is a social platform that gives
people the opportunity to create unique social experiences
for specific topics, interests, and passions. I think the most amazing thing about 2009
is that outside of Silicon Valley social technologies went mainstream
and they went mainstream in the sense that we have all heard
of them if we’re not actually using them
in our daily lives. And specifically I think
it’s not Forrester numbers but I think the number is something
like from the beginning of 2009 to the end people spent three times
the amount of time and energy in social technologies and on social platforms than
they had in the prior year. So where does it go from here? The exciting thing from my perspective is that there actually
is an analogy for this. When you look at 1994, 1995 as people
came online for the first time, in many cases they weren’t coming online
to the web, they came online to AOL, to CompuServe, to Prodigy,
they got comfortable with services that actually provided
a pretty narrow and simple user experience
for people to get up and running and really understanding
that particular example and in that particular case
what email was like, what chat meant, and what the concept of a page was. What the web actually provided
was a way once people got sophisticated to be able to dive into all the different
things that they wanted to on the web, both from the creative perspective,
in terms of people creating things as well as people consuming
things in entirely new ways. And what we found was that the web-needed
behavior of people using the internet was connecting to other people
and we’re seeing this now 15 to 16 years later fully realized
in social technologies. But I think you can use that map
to see where people go, namely there is no analogue
for the type of growth that Facebook and even Twitter has seen this year
and yet it’s sending people into richer, more immersive experiences
and specifically richer and more immersive social experiences
around the things that they care about. So I think that that
is absolutely something that we’ll see emerge from here. People now understand “Well I can get
and have the kinds of relationships that I have in the real world with strong
ties with people that I already know in the context of Facebook
and I can discover new people and new ideas on Twitter
and this stream of compelling information and then I can also dive
into deeper immersive social experiences around the things that I care about.” And I think what’s so exciting about this
from my perspective is it’s really one of the first times
where technology is not defining how people act
but it’s actually reflecting how do we actually live
our lives in the real world, where we actually fluidly move between
the people that we meet at conferences and the people that
we know from growing up and the people that we admire
from a… or editorial perspective. And what I think is so cool
is that all of these different social technologies
are working together in the same fluid way
that we live our lives and I think that the end result
is going to be richer online and offline lives
for all of us around the world. Do I think
are there inherent implications that – and certainly risks associated with this? Well I think that it’s really about
the internet amplifying the best and worst of people
and I think that we’ve seen actually more cases where the good
is winning out over the bad and I think the last 14 days
or however long it’s been in terms of just the immediate impact
that the earthquake in Haiti has had around the world
especially from a fundraising perspective, there is no analogue for that,
there is no analogue for the kind of ways
in which people today can have an impact on something sitting
on their couch in their pajamas halfway
around the world. And I think that that’s only going
to make us globally much more interesting and hopefully,
not to sound too much like a hippy, but the world a better
and certainly more interesting place. Thank you, Gina. Don, are you ready,
since the mike is over there? Sure. To share a few thoughts with us?
Don Tapscott from nGenera. In case you don’t know who I am,
I’m a researcher. I’ve written a bunch of books going back
to 1981 about the internet and society. I wrote the book “Wikinomics.” Okay, two points; where’s this going
and big risks and where is it going from the perspective
of business and the enterprise. I think we’re at a deflection point
where social networking is changing and becoming a new mode of production,
it’s becoming social production. And social networks within the enterprise are becoming
the new operating system of a business. Now I can speak to this quite a bit
and hopefully… will add later on in the conversation
of what I’m saying. Best Buy is a company has a social network
involving tens of thousands of people and this changes the way Best Buy
operates its business. It has a link to that,
part of a broader collaborative platform and electronic water pool
with 70,000 people that comes up with
all kinds of fantastic ideas. It uses prediction markets
to better understand what’s really happening
with the company. This is changing
the way you run a business. It’s no longer about hooking up online
or creating a gardening community. But the more important opportunity
has to do with using these new collaborative platforms built
around social networks to change the deep structure
and the architecture of corporations and how they orchestrate capability
to innovate and to create value. So I use LinkedIn, for example,
to run a contest for a book I’ve read recently called
“Grown Up Digital” where I ask kids around the world
“Give me a two-minute video that says what’s wrong with the education
system and how you’d fix it?” I had half a person working
on this for two weeks. I got hundreds of videos
from dozens of countries and it changed the way that I as a company
could relate with the rest of the world. InoCentive is basically built
on a social network. I’m Procter & Gamble,
I’m trying to find a molecule that will take red wine out of a shirt,
I’ve got 9000 people inside but there are 200,000 outside
on the InoCentive network that sure enough there’s a retired chemist
in Taipei or a grad student in London that comes up with a molecule, I’d pay him a couple
of hundred thousand dollars and I have a product that
ends up being a billion dollar product. Goldscorp, gold mining company,
the CEO there was very frustrated that his geologist couldn’t
tell him where to go into production, where the gold was, so he held a contest
based essentially on a social network and collaborative platform
“$500,000 in prices for anybody who can tell me do I have any gold
in this company and if so, where is it?” He got 77 submissions
from all around the world, they used techniques
that he’d never heard of, and for half a million dollars
in price money he found $3.4 billion worth of gold and the market value
of his company went from $19 million to $10 billion. He’s actually my neighbor. He lives across the street from me
and I can tell you, he’s a happy camper. So this is changing the way
that we innovate, it’s called open innovation,
the way we get capability. Government, another example,
I’m working with some heads of state and men at the governor level
in the US to do digital brainstorms that are essentially on a social network
platform where the issue, the President of Portugal for example,
is going to come online and say “For the next three days,
we’re going to have a conversation in our country
where everyone can participate.” This is changing the nature of democracy and the way the citizens engage
with their state. I could go on, I won’t. I know. Can I say one thing about problem? I think there are two really big problems. One is privacy and I did a research project
where I interviewed 11,000 young people, young people are giving away
their personal information, too much, and this year there will be thousands
of young people who don’t get that dream job
because their employer did a reference check on Facebook
and there are things that you say or do or wear when you’re 19
that are not really who you are. This is a massive
historic problem to me. The other big problem has to do
with moving to this new paradigm and I think there’s a crisis
in leadership in companies and enterprises typified by this popular
habit of banning Facebook and banning social networks
within the enterprise. I was talking to the CIO of a state
where the governor had banned Facebook and I said “Why did you do that?” and he says “Well the governor felt young
people were wasting their time on the job,” to which I replied “Well if young people
are wasting their time, is that a technology problem? You fix that by banning a technology?” They just got to do some of the workload,
job design, and performance evaluation. I said
“What was the effect of banning Facebook?” He said “Everybody went to MySpace.” Another, good news there, another
youngster, 27 years old, I asked him, he works for the Federal Agency
“What’s the effect of banning Facebook?” He had a different answer. He said “It was the single most
Demoralizing thing management has ever done. It said to us we don’t get collaboration,
we don’t get your tools, we don’t understand your generation,
and we don’t trust you.” So there’s a crisis
of leadership emerging. Very good.
Thank you very much Don. I will ask now Evan Williams,
Co-Founder and CEO of Twitter Well I agree with
a lot of what’s been said and there’s tons of interesting stuff
to talk about already so I won’t add too much more. One thing I noticed though is there’s
a lot of conflation of ideas when we talked about social
in the social web and I’m wondering why that is
and what that means because I think most of everything
we’re talking about is just it’s about the internet
and it’s about taking media and making it two-way and giving
everybody the ability to publish and participate with each other. So when we talk about social networks
or social – there are infinite varieties of what that means and I think it more
or less just means the internet and people have been publishing
in the internet. The big original promise of the internet,
at least one of them was about the democratization
of information and it took us, in the trend of social networks
and Twitter which we don’t really even consider a social network
and all these other tools, are about lowering the bar
and really realizing that that ability for everybody to publish
and participate very, very easily. And the effects of that,
I totally agree with Gina and the other folks that said they
pretty much affect everything, they affect society in every way,
they affect, not only what media we consume
but how we – basically at Twitter we look at doing
three things for people: helping then find the information they
want and when they want it and so it’s basically a filtering
and discovery engine; two is creation of content
which is expressing and having influence over others
so not everybody in the world is going to be writing articles
or creating videos and what not but almost everybody
may say to their friend now and then or whoever is listening
to him “Hey check this out. And that’s a form of influence
and that has profound effects right there because that directs people more
and more to what media they consume; and third is about building relationships
and obviously this is the heart of a lot of social networks
that are out there about communicating but they’re also about relationships
of all types, with businesses, some of the stuff that we’re excited
about Twitter is where an individual will follow a local business,
their coffee shop and get their special of the day
and that’s a two-way channel so businesses can hear back from customers
who’ve always been more or less anonymous and so with all these mechanisms
we now have a way to keep in touch with a person or a business
or any entity that we care to keep in touch with so when you have
a meeting instead of just you can now have a link back to them. So there’s not much that
that won’t influence in the society, I think the underlying idea
to just consider about what this affects is that people who use these technologies
and use the internet to do what people have always done
and that’s about building relationships, communicating with each other,
expressing themselves, and this is just a continuation
of what’s been happening for the last 15 years or so since the
commercialization of the internet. Thank you, Evan.
Randi? Here’s the mike for you.
So Randi Zuckerberg from Facebook Thanks for giving me some time to stall.
Hi everyone. I’m pinch-hitting for my brother who
unfortunately couldn’t make it this year. I just want to say that
it’s really fantastic to be here and this time last year
I was here speaking about an incredible event
that happened for social media and that was the inauguration
of Barack Obama and what we saw online
with people all over the world coming together in this incredible
global conversation and the fact that content was really
democratized like never before, I think that was just a really amazing
time and I remember coming here and really seeing the attention
that was given to social media at that time among business
and global leaders. Since then there have been
a lot of events in the world this year. There have been elections all over,
the Iranian election and we’ve seen the current situation
in Haiti especially. Collectively in this room
when you look around we have hundreds of millions of people
that are using all of these sites and I think that gives us incredible
responsibility to come together to find ways to make sure that people are
getting access to accurate information, to real time information,
and to information online in a social way that’s really going
to help make a difference. Very good. And Randi will you have
feedback from Facebook as well? Sure. Yeah. So one of the things that we experimented
with last year at the forum, we actually granted some real time in-site
polls over some of the sessions where world leaders
were talking about issues,. We actually were instantaneously polling people on Facebook
to get the public opinion. It’s not enough to see just what
six global leaders have to say, let’s bring 350 million people
into the conversation too. So we’re going to be taking questions
from any of you guys that want to ask what people
online are thinking about social – So why don’t you ask them
the three same questions and see what we get from Facebook? Sure. Great. I’ll make sure
I’ll give you the questions again. Sounds good.
Thanks guys. Are you done?
Very good. Thank you, Randi. We will move into – Mousa Musa,
we’ll see, I guess you could report
for your table maybe? And what should individuals and
institutions do to leverage our power? Those were out three questions. Can someone take this table
because I’ll be moving around? You want to – I found a casualty here.
Maybe you want to run the conversation? Okay It’s just about like having a conversation
and then we continue. So anyone can report – if will be good
if you – I’ll be right back, I’m just making sure everything is fine.
Do you have the three questions? How is it changing society? What are the risks – Implications and risks.
And what should we do to leverage it. Exactly. So how is it changing society? I have – you changed my life,
I have three boys and who spend everyday, I hope not a lot,
and actually they are travelling and now they have friends
all around the world. One of them is in Latin America
and the only way he communicates is on Facebook,
so that’s one impact. Except that your children won’t need
to meet their friends on Facebook. …do that primarily is around media
and constant interests, right? And what we talk about is the discovery
which they discover a lot of content in the media through other people
and then the sharing and show casing of the information.
And I think each of those provides a different filter,
the people I’m connected to in the real world are one filter
for me Twitter is another one where I can go up
and take a topic and find out what the general
populace is thinking about it. I think that’s interesting. When I was thinking about
was what John was just saying about sort of thinking
that this is more than an evolution rather than a revolution
so from letter writing to phone to email to Twitter,
that’s a way of looking at communication but what I think
is interesting here is conflating or is the joining of communication
with the ability to broadcast and I think that’s kind
of what we’re seeing, it’s like it’s not just that I can now
communicate with you through a different channel but I’m also
at the same time communicating and broadcasting
and like at YouTube you think about that as now anybody can have
his platform for the ability to broadcast yourself
which was limited to a very, very small group of people
and now you’re both communicating and broadcasting at the same time
which I think, based on my experience
watching how my friends act and watching how people younger
than me are interacting with these technologies is that
it is changing how people behave. I’m less of a believer that this is just
a reflection of how society is and more I think of a campus thing
but it is kind of changing how we conduct ourselves
because you watch the way that young people… on Facebook,
Twitter, MySpace, there’s much more of this like
self-conscious “How am I presenting myself?
Is this information that I’m sharing, how is this going to reflect
on how I’m perceived socially?” It is an interesting question the way
that you’re talking about it. Is this just an ongoing evolution? When you think about newspapers
as an example, to try to get your perspective
on this Arthur, you know, newspapers were about news
and then they start to be about increasingly you have opinion
and analysis and then up at where you’re drawing
people into the conversation, not necessarily these people… How do you see this in terms of – I’m here to learn. Going to be increasingly smelt out
and actually vilified. It will bite them bad
because they’ll talk to the camera and it will be a totally different jargon
than the guy online and suddenly the fraud is exposed. You’re going to be naked
so you better be rough. Can I pick up on this point? Like the whole theme of Davos
this year is that the world is busted and we need to rethink, redesign,
rebuild our institutions and we have – the current model is nation
states come together to fix things. The model we’re exploring
at Davos is that we could have new multi-stakeholders
to solve problems. So the world leaders are stalled
in Copenhagen trying to get a climate change deal,
I estimate between 8 and 10 million people that they’re
organizing using the web, social networks and other stuff,
around this issue. So this is the first time in human history
that we’re all on the same side basically and so to me this presents
a new opportunity that fundamentally changed the way
that we collaborated with the world, the way that we solved problems. Yeah,
my company is Mobile Video. We’re in about 60 countries,
including a lot of developing markets and what really struck me,
and it’s similar to what you’re saying, is applications we had never thought
of in remote villages in Africa and Southeast Asia,
they’re doing telemedicine, they’re having access to medical
care through these networks and so they don’t have to walk a day
and a half to get that. They can get that through something
that’s formal or less formal. For me it’s about bringing information
to people that one way wouldn’t… and then the other side is you bring
in people in to the dialogue that didn’t have a voice before
and now they have a voice, that’s something I’m truly struck
us a lot in the last 18 months. And so just another thing, the bottom line
of what I was saying that I didn’t say, this morning at 7:30 I was
at a meeting hosted by Nike and the CEOs of some other companies
and they launched something called the “Green Exchange.” And this is a historic thing to me where
companies are going to contribute their intellectual property
and put it in the platform in the commons and using social networking
to do this basically. Nike’s giving away its 440 patents
and placing them in the commons and the idea,
not just that a rising tide lifts all boats and that we have a big problem
in the world regarding the environment, but also on the idea that this is part
of a new thinking about open innovation and competitive strategies, you don’t need
to own all your intellectual property, I mean now through social networking
and all this other stuff we have a platform that radically drops collaboration costs
and enables us to innovate differently and to think differently
about the nature of IP. And, man, this is a big change,
I mean back in the music industry, the internet was the best thing
that ever happened to it and at least rather embracing
internet radically changed the whole industry and turned music
from a product to a service and the record industry
ends up suing children and is hated by its customers in this – I think that’s true. I do think
there’s an interesting question though that becomes
“So what is the new IP? What is the new internet?”
because, I mean, I agree with you but you how many
even tens of hundreds of years in the development of what
does competitive advantage, differentiation, and IP need and — Where people are and I think
that that application right now is being used in the human rights
community but as people age who are online users,
right now there’s a big issue, if you’re 85, you’re alone,
and you don’t have children who aren’t tracking you there
isn’t the kind of minute-to-minute or day-to-day accountability
to where you are and how you’re doing and what your state
is which I think social networks could actually provide, where people…
and that would be a function of users aging and incorporating
this kind of technology. Two more great… so now people are using
real names like… The second thing is that you can really
reach second degree of connections. It was never possible
and this is like a treasure to know. I’m not asking the internet,
I’m asking the friends of my friends. And that’s vitally true
for a wide range of acts, everything from restaurant conversations
to who is a good person understanding city problems
and can you create diversities, ecologies, that sort of thing
because the second degree, it’s very easy to ascertain trust
and authenticity in the administration. There’s other ways of doing
that too but second degree’s easy, its like “Oh Jeff knows this guy? Jeff what do you think of him?
Good? Bad?” There’s a new Facebook program called,
I think,… that is a dating service only for people who your friends know. That’s always been
a communication gateway, the information from my friend
is more important but what’s the implication for your media,
or the old establishment media, or the big media that everyone went to
for information because now you don’t know
who those people are, right? That’s the opportunity…
about the need for algorithmic authority and what he’s saying
is there’s a business opportunity here
to find definitions of trust, it’s no longer one size fits all,
we all trust this brand, the New York Times, some people trust…,
some don’t. I do, very clear. But that’s an individual decision,
always has been… But then it’s really disruptive
to the different kind of who we go to trust in terms
of these guys. I don’t know who he is. Well I don’t know but I know
I can get all my friends to get to all the places I want to go. Actually there are 10,000…,it’s a lot,
you can find almost anything. You have instant friends,
someone wants to know about whiskey, you make new friends who know
about whiskey, like that and — Are there any questions
we haven’t addressed… At this time I can’t talk about all
of them but one of them we talked about Haiti
and we talked about Iran. In our case we kept the story
about Iran going for many, many days after most of the big newspapers
had been kicked out of the country and we’re depending on Reuters or BAP. By then we had developed a network
of people inside of Iran who were kind of checking
and balancing each other so we were getting information
that was kind of checked by the crowd of Iran and we were
able to tell a really accurate story. I’m not sure if it was pretty accurate
but in our case we felt that accurate enough given the
point of the story was good enough. In the case of Haiti, we s well as CNN,
as well as everybody else jumped on to the story much faster
than any other natural disaster. The last one was the one
of the tsunami was the beginning of social networking where you could see
pictures of the tsunami being uploaded. In this particular case
of Haiti social networking is much more evolved
and you saw the reaction, the reaction was spontaneous,
quite gigantic, and the biggest worry about natural
disasters is what the story could live on and what people could do
to pay attention. We believe that in this case,
yes. The biggest risk is that governments
which are not involved in social networking except very much…
do not understand the phenomenon and will – as the velocity
of social networks make current events go even faster,
they’re going to be left behind, and that one might have implications
where there’s a complete disconnect, and I don’t want to make any predictions
but I think we’re starting to see that disconnect happening whereby
just a year after a very popular president gets elected he walked into a brick wall
and a lot of it has to do with the fact that people have moved on
and his administration has stayed behind. My name is Marie… and we will start with Mousa Musa
reporting from his table so perhaps someone… I’m sure you all can see me. So I think what we were talking
about in our table social networks are instruments
of social change and we’ve had different opinions,
of course, but I think we’ve said
that social networks can change a community because
we’re more communicated and we’re more in touch
with each other. And actually what we said
was we deprive people, people who are in poor countries
they could get their message out through these social networks. And also we’ve talked about how
social networks can actually influence people to more objective towards
their goals and to help people, such as Iran
and Haiti. As the risks go, kind of – the value
of education is kind of a lesson because we don’t have very much value,
we don’t concentrate on education, people spend more time on social networks
than they do obviously reading books. And so goes with checks
and balances, we said we can’t check on the accuracy
of information and we’re also – when we put all these
people together we’re given the risk of exclusion,
we’re excluding some people out of even though it’s an exclusion
utensil we’re excluding some people out of it
and that’s really unfair. Also, as leveraging the power,
I think most of us agree that we should use that power
instead of leveraging it and actually using the power
of the people to put a check on the corporations
and kind of on the information going on. Thank you. So in between I would like to YouTube’s
Steve Grove that is also a social network. Explain what you’ve learned here
and I’ll take one question from YouTube that someone here can answer
and we fall back also to the internet. Excellent.
I’m Steve Grove from YouTube and three or four days ago when we…
this video on our homepage, asking people to submit questions
and vote on their favorites on YouTube.com/Davos, and let
me click over to the platform now, so there is a whole range of questions
that have been submitted here and one of the top voted ones
and ones that we thought might be relevant is grouped to discuss — How many answers
and questions did you get? We got 114 questions. Wow. So we should inform the YouTube users
that we won’t be able to answer 114 questions but we’ll take one right now. Exactly. The question comes from
a user who calls themselves – Before you read the question,
someone in the room, one of the leaders or anyone else,
if you want to answer… So can you read it? Yes, so the question is,
you can’t see it in the board, that what was supposed to free us
but with the world becoming increasingly influenced by hype,
popular news is over imported along with the decline of journalism
and efficiency, internet short hands and lack of grammar online. Is society deteriorating? With the hype.
Okay who wants to take this one? All right I will. All right,…
He needs a microphone. There should be one over here.
Can you pass it to him? How do I put this gently. You could always find people
who would be worried about this hype but the trick is the opportunity here. Is journalism declining? I think journalism is growing
in a couple of new ways, like Larry who is in journalism right
here and making money doing it. Is there a hype in media? Yeah, blame the media but are we all
idiots enough that we all follow it? No. Is society deteriorating? I think to the contrary, I think we
have new tools for that, I’m… Mike Butcher from TechCrunch. One thing, and Jeff you’re just
the perfect guy to talk to this about, what I don’t get is there’s this view
about before the internet that journalism was this sort of pure
and innocent priesthood of truth and if I didn’t realize exactly how
journalism was really sausage making until I became one
and just how ugly it is behind the scenes and how it’s a constant battle to even
find the truth, let alone report it, how did they pull that off?
So here’s my question: over the last 800 years how did the press
as a whole manage to convince the world that they somehow stand for truth
as opposed to whatever it is they do from your standpoint? Control, one word, control. And what the internet does is
it breaks down control. It breaks it down, not only media
but in every industry there is, it will do so in government in ways
that may scare people, those who had control but if you
had some inherent faith in the people, which is to say society,
which this question does not, I know, there’s no asking it, but that’s become
a comfort blanket but I think when others of us gain
control thanks to what the internet allows then that breaks
down old structures, that scares the old structures,
the old structures go to constantly complain like this,
but if you have faith in your fellow men, good things will happen. Anyone else on that topic? About why is society getting
better with… No?
All right. We want these two from the table,
Reid, and then we’ll take one more
from YouTube, one more So we talked both about
a little bit about upsides and somewhat more about risks. There was a general discussion
on the privacy topic. Most folks at the table,
many points of view, had the view that the privacy sector
is frequently overblown as taken partially from journalists having
something dramatic to write about. Now the interesting theme about privacy
is not so much what you publish about yourselves but many
of us feel that’s there’s a kind of new normal coming off
of that but a question of what
do other people publish you and that the more interesting questions
about having millions publish as there is are everything
from slander or other kinds of things where
issues over brand is happening. There was a bunch of discussions
about digital divide issues, the question of if there is
there’s a general view that having the world
much more connected and efficient in terms
of information distribution and finding people either for
kind of finding former colleagues or classmates that we’re connecting
or finding experts to help you with a business problem. With all that is there
a digital divide problem and how do you make sure
that there isn’t kind of an accelerating difference
between kind of already rich connected markets
and emerging markets and how do you solve
the problem now? You know one of the wag comments
I made there was well go on to professional sites like LinkedIn…
and find the people to help with that. And so that was kind of the things –
and then also we talked some about the question
of how do you approach these things as an individual person? What’s your strategy? Because part of essentially
what you get out is what you put in, most people tend
to feel like I show up and something like this happens,
but actually these things are now actually part of our lives
and you should think about what is the way that I use these tools
like I use the BlackBerry or anything else as a way
of navigating how you navigate your own personal life. Thank you very much,
Reid. I was looking at
so for all of you watching online I was looking at the Davos social sites,
lots of feedback on Twitter so hopefully we’ll take one of those,
keep going. One more, Steve, from YouTube
before we go to George’s table. So this one just came in,
it’s really good. A little bit to what Reid was saying,
not on broadband-accessed but on accessed information,
it’s about censorship. This comes from Rashna
at the Dubai School of Government who asks how involved
should corporations such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc be on the
internet censorship laws that compromise access to their content
and don’t they owe it to their users to try and ensure
their equal access worldwide? Especially with China…
Anyone who wants to take this one? There has to be one of you.
All right I’ll pick a casualty. Read it again Steve while
we find a – All right. It’s essentially
a question about censorship and corporations
have overall in defining internet censorship laws
around the world. So Randi has been proposing
to answer this question from
Facebook’s perspective. Thank you very much,
Randi. The world wants to hear what
Facebook has to say about that. We’re not friends right now. I think it’s interesting. This is something that
I was really involved with Facebook since its response to the elections
in Iran and what was going on there. We saw Facebook users
in the country decline by about 78% during that
and it was really interesting, that was the really first experience
that we had with a global situation when it was more critical than
ever to get messaging in and out of the country
and to not have reliable access. It was very disappointing to us. In China has a very different situation
because Facebook is completely blocked in China so there’s no access
and no way to access the site at all there but looking at the outcry
on Facebook that we’ve seen is speaking as the voice of the users
people seem supportive of those decisions. Anyone else on censorship? Just a question. You’ve already said at DLD
that censorship was taking basically what was available… Pardon? Can you repeat that for me? I said I was at another session
at the same time, I missed – I’m done with the mike,
this is the mike of trouble I apologize, Randi, I apologize. I hope it’s only on
Facebook but we’re still friends. All right,
anyone else on censorship? No. George? Can I have the mike? …of the social networking companies
who won’t stand up against censorship in the room. They won’t do it? Reid. The short hand is – so LinkedIn
doesn’t directly counter these things because very rarely
did questions of the professional CV and expertise would encounter
any of these censorship issues. The only particular thing
that you actually end up getting to navigate is things like
“If I put in my profile I was so and so’s consulting firms…
which is rarely that. Generally speaking I’d say
that all the Silicon Valley folks are very pro – technology folks
are very pro- transparency, very pro-publication
and information and is generally very positive. On the other hand you try to pulse
about what is cultural sensitivity, what are the government’s ability to make
laws regarding their particular things? And it’s not just, for example,
China which tends to get harped on a lot here, but you knew
there’s questions around, for example, laws regarding
hate groups in Germany and France and other kinds
of things all pertain to this and how do you balance the
general good of transparency and individual freedom against
certain kinds of social rules. And I think one of the most corporate
folks tend to say “Well I just kind of want
to just help the thing and make as much
as the transparencies available and not take on public conflicts”
is for that reason. Now I don’t know what the
right answer is here but that’s the shape of it
in terms of how I look at it. Did your role change the game? The question was did your
role change the game. TVD, obviously I think there was a lot
of support for saying “Hey it’s important”
that we defend people’s belief in private accounts
and all those kinds of things and I think that’s
a very good move. Usually it’s a bad interfaith
point with the Chinese government to try to take into a public debate
but I think it’s good, very good for the general world
discussion that brought it up and I think that a lot of things
as important is how in general I think the right place
to go in the global society is how do we add more transparency
because more or less if the thing can’t be published
openly, what is it? Not that I think they
can be published openly, like I’d prefer the DNA code
for Ebola to not be easily accessible but generally speaking
how do we get there? I think the most productive way
to fight that is not like trying to engage the Chinese government
or these other governments who the very being is against
what we are all about but I am hopeful that the way around
some of these is the technological ways around some of these barriers. And we have seen that
we have seem some very interesting …to get to Twitter from Iran
and other places where it’s not accessible
in normal ways. Like the API for example? Through the API but even clever
one of the advantages of Twitter is this is not a website which is part
of why George’s… numbers aren’t totally relevant. Twitter is a network
that just has access to thousands of different applications
and from mobile networks and from other websites
including Facebook in other ways. So we think that’s an advantage
when it comes to censorship and with their… that I don’t want
to talk about widely to get around the normal blog. So we will do all we can to enable
people to access to Twitter, that’s kind of our whole deal,
we’re not going to move into countries. I’m very proud that…
that same Google’s taking there. We are not in a position as 100%…
to take that kind of taking that kind of influence,
we don’t even I can’t even start that,
but we will do all we can to hopefully enable
to work around it eventually. Thank you, Evan.
Anyone else on censorship? Anyone else? Gina?
No? All right,
so we’ll move one. Hi I’m Eric… So as a journalistic organization
it’s easy to be against censorship but I think we should
give Hilary Clinton a lot of credit for the speech
that she gave the other day calling for an open internet
which is for transparency and openness and really taking
on China to do to a large degree on behalf of Google
and others. We’re completely blocked in countries
like Iran for these reasons and China, for whatever reason,
blocks us on and off. And I don’t think that any
of us can stand and for a world
where censorship exists, we wouldn’t have the society
that we have today and the freedoms
that we have with censorship. Having said that,
it’s just a question of time, you can’t put the
genie back in the bottle, you can’t put the genie back
in the bottle the same way that you can’t get the news
back in the bottle, you can’t put the genie back
in the bottle and so just a question of time,
people in Iran, people in China, wherever they are
that there might be censored, are finding as we speak ways around,
as Ed was mentioning… and the best thing we could
do is we continue to do best and to try to tell real stories
about what’s going on in the world. All right,
I will take one from Twitter, so if someone wants to take this one,
this is from… from Twitter and it’s very simple,
it’s easy, so the Davos social tag, does social media make
us more honest? Anyone?
Yeah. The mike is there. Does social media make us more honest? Go ahead. Well I think there are two ways
going about the question. Of course there’s no check
on the very occlusive information coming out there. It does not make us more honest
but we would be more honest. I mean, I’m 17 and I’m trying to get
my message out about social — What’s your message? About – I school
for the visually impaired and I actually help get equipment
to these schools and I’ve seen the real need
for equipment in Iraq for these schools
so I try to get them the equipment that they need
and we’ve actually been covered by CNN and we try
to do it as much as possible. That doesn’t make us honest,
nothing kind of makes you honest but you want
to be honest on these things
because you want to make change. I want to effect change
so I want it to be honest. So that’s the reason that it’s
more honest because you want to be. Thank you.
Randi if you have someone helping you, like just show the page on Facebook
so that we can put it up there and we’ll take
a question from Facebook. Do you want to say something?
Okay. I think we are underestimating the power
of social networks in making people honest because
it’s like almost orchestrated gossip. There is a way that when you know
people are going to comment on what you do, when you know
people can see what you do, the risk that you
can get away with things. You know the question about
how journalists actually get away with this thesis that everything
was pristine and perfect before. Well there wasn’t any way of
the feedback wasn’t there to say what we were talking is crap. Here we have voting mechanisms,
we have open criticism capabilities and we’ve always felt that any open
source movement because of the Linus’ law,
given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow,
there is an equivalent of shallow people being exposed
more easily when they use a social network because they don’t have
any of the traditional protection. So I think that probably social networks
are definitely forces of being able to make
people act more honestly. Thank you JP.
Owen? MySpace. I don’t know that social networks
make us more honest but social networks and social media and the social web
creates a level of transparency that makes us a lot more accountable. And it exposes a lot more those things
that the general public perceives as incorrect or inaccurate. I think that’s an important distinction
because I think honestly there’s a much different definition
than to accountability and accountability
is one of the big benefits that we get from the transparency
of the social web. So Don, if you could pass the
mike to Don at the other table? Okay,
very good. And Don will you report
for your table as well? Very good. I think to answer the question you need to differentiate
between individuals and institutions. An individual,
I think it’s a tough issue, but in the sense that honesty
is a foundation of trust, if you as an individual
wants to have trusting relationships with other people you need
to be honest so that would argue
that over time people’s behavior will change
to be more truthful unless in order to have any kind
of reputation brand. I think it’s much clearer
when it comes to institutions and the key thing is transparency. That because of social networks
and the web as a whole, institutions are becoming naked. Transparency is a new force
that’s causing companies to be, I believe and I’ve done
a lot of research on this, to be more open and to be more
truthful and honest. We don’t always see it
but that’s the general trend. Basically companies
are going to be naked, and if you’re going to be naked
fitness is no longer optional, if you’re going to be naked
you better be buff. And so companies that are on this
can use transparency as a friend, they can sort of undress success,
if you like, and build relationships with others. This is a new force, sunlight
is the best disinfectant basically, and I think on the question
of institutions, it’s unquestionable that there
are very good things happening. Okay, in terms of our group,
briefly – Yeah, especially in places
on your table, knowing you
as what you discussed with Reid. You know what?
We never got into that. That’s very good,
I’m surprised. It’s more interesting that you started
a discussion about social networks and all of a sudden you’re
into a discussion about human behavior;
about newspapers TV, democracy, innovation,
intellectual property, the nature of corporations,
competition, competitive advantage, relationship capital is a new source
of competitive advantage, and just the fact that we had that
conversation is kind of interesting. Gina made a very good point. I should – why don’t you make it
about art and artists and how the music industry
is causing some change. So the thing that is really interesting
from my perspective is we’re now going through
yet another shift in terms of what makes a successful
either artist or organizer. Today, in a social world,
and the analogy that I think is appropriate is actually when we
moved from silent movies talkies. And the fact of the matter
is silent movie start didn’t necessarily
make that transition. In the same way,
the characteristics and the things that are going to make
whether it’s an artist or an organizer or just the creator of
social experience is successful in 2010 and beyond given this new technology
and these new social platforms is actually the days of a shy artist who
has all of these handlers that they basically can be shy
and brooding in the corner just making their art,
they actually may not make it because the distribution channels
and the ways that art is discovered actually on some level
requires being outgoing and being social. So I think that it’s going
to be one of these very interesting transitions just as we’ve seen
in the past with different technologies actually rewarding and being very
appropriate for some kinds of personalities and some types
of ways of organizing and not others. Thank you Gina. Just one quick example. I want to do this
because we’re on the web and there’s this view that at Davos
people talk about stuff but nothing ever happens. This morning I attended
a breakfast hosted by Mark Parker, the CEO of Nike and it launched
something I think is historic, the Green Exchange
and it’s basically using social network so that companies will contribute
their intellectual property, anything processed, best practice,
software ideas that have to do with improving the environment,
cutting carbon, and so on. They’re going to place
it in the comments on the idea not just a rising tide lifts all boats
and the other big problem in the world, but as part of a new
thinking about open innovation and competitive strategy
and this is something that’s really important,
in any companies that are watching, I’d encourage them to join in
and participate. And it makes a point about social
networks, it’s not just about – They make companies more honest. Yeah,
making friends. It also enables companies
to think differently about intellectual property,
to innovate differently, and to solve some big social problems,
so that’s very important. Thank you,
Don. Now I’m going to ask the inventor
of the web, Tim Berners-Lee, to give us some thoughts. Do you want to talk about – I think, let me say about social networks
generally that to ask a question like that I think is wrong to treat them
all the same because it depends
on how you design them and little changes I think,
for example Facebook found just little changes
in how you treat privacy can dramatically affect the
way the social network works, the fact that eBay works isn’t
because they handle money very well, they protect their products really well,
it’s because threw in their reputation-based system
for where you can trust the other person and it happened to be a reputation-based
system that worked. Other sites that, I won’t mention,
but secure ones, other sites in which people tweet
about or give information about what they typically think about what
just happened where there is a reputation-based system where people
can push the messages up and down, they don’t work and it’s still generally…
when you go there you find as much garbage… It turns out that really
small changes in the way you design the interaction system,
where you design this social machinery… voting systems out there,
well we’ve had voting systems… on a social networks which breaks across
countries and… and actually can’t we think
of something better than voting, I think we’d be using democracy
because there would be nothing better. Winston Churchill said for years
and years and years. On social networks,
every single social network we get a chance to redesign the way
we actually make decisions together, the way we collectively
design towards the truth, and I hope we’re really
at the beginning of that path in each of the social networks
because at the moment, the experiments and I hope we find
some really effective ways so that the problem would become
very much more reliable so that I can put much more trust in it. So Tim you created the web,
so how do you feel about this preferred – I invented it, one person
this guy sent me an email and I called him back
because he was really mad and I said “I did not,
I created the web,” and he said “How can you say you created
the web and…?” So what do you think about
the third question then? What do you think we should do
in institutions to make social networks to make sure that they
improve the world better? Well actually I think we have to study,
for example we’re subjecting the people to study the web
as a scientific discipline because nobody is studying it
and so we need people studying social networks who combine
some psychology and some anthropology and the computer science…
fancy new system. So we need to study web science
and look at what we’ve got and really analyze how a need spreads,
I think it’s fascinating how a need spreads because of Twitter. We need to do it because we need
to build other systems but also we need to analyze it
because we need to figure out whether the social network
that we built now is actually unstable and somebody thought of a really good
conspiracy theory which said don’t believe all the
people of the world…, don’t believe everything that you see,
everything you hear on the news, and don’t believe any
of these bloggers but do go and do something that’s very
disruptive on the frontier. Then how do we know? Have we got any – we don’t know
how the system works, we don’t have to analyze how those
so maybe the whole thing could be like an unstable
stock exchange, or an unstable… exchange out there
unless we think about it just like we have
to analyze the stock exchange. Very interesting.
Thank you, Tim. George?
And then Facebook? You can switch to Facebook
whenever you like in your computer. So here a series of ideas
which are probably unconnected as they came out of their table,
I think they were interesting. Before I go there,
this question about honesty, my view has been for 10 years
that it should be good because in the future everyone
will know everything about you and although a famous golfer
in the United States, Tiger Woods, thought he could cover up
for many years and he found out he could not and ultimately it will
all come out whatever you do. That’s scary.
Thank you. Yeah.
He had to be mentioned this morning. So changing society,
a couple of points here. I think it was made
by our friend from Best Buy, he said that one of the biggest impacts
will be how social will change leadership. I think it was Don who talked about
Don talked about how some CEOs were shutting down social sites
and so there’s going to have to be some reformational leadership so that
it’s a challenge to all leadership, even CEOs, even Presidents,
etc, number one. And the second point of changing society
is this is creating an obligation to listen, not to talk but to listen,
we all will have to listen. So here are the risks. A lash back by institutions,
some people on the table thought that there will be a lash back coming. Institutions will shut it down
and will stop it, it will censor it, even in democracies. Who said open was good?
We all claim open is good. Why did we claim that? Three of the most secretive companies
in the world: Apple, Google, and Amazon are very secretive. They love us to all be open
but they don’t want to be open. So who claims that open is good? I’m hoping Steve Jobs who’s
claiming that open was good. And last thought here on the risks
is that we, and going back to Mr. Tapscott’s
example about these videos he got on education,
you might assume that that’s the general belief
of the world but maybe it’s not, maybe that’s a small slice,
maybe we are taking these small samples considering them to be the mass opinion,
they may not be the mass opinion. And last one on how we leverage this,
you want to tell your story for Best Buy? About harnessing young people? Can you introduce yourself? …with Best Buy. I just wanted to – something we did
with Twitter which is just a practical thing
that I think back to Evan’s point where
you’ve got to find businesses using it and people ought to find use out of it. We had an employee
that came up with an idea how the connection used Twitter
to help customers with the problems they might have with their computers,
any computers or devices that they’re having problems with. And how do you use Twitter? We have a big work force,
a young workforce, probably the biggest, largest,
organized young workforce in America probably outside the Army
and you have to engage this population and you can’t just kind
of employ them in a contractual basis, you have to inspire them, they come
and go, they don’t have to work for you. They can turn up in your building
but they don’t have to work for you. So one of the things that we did
was this… you’ll see it on Twitter. So if you have a computer problem
you can do it now, you can just say
“Hey my BlackBerry is not working. I’ve got this, this, and this”…,
and we have a voluntary army of employees, now voluntary in the sense that
they’ve all got jobs inside Best Buy, they might be working in the store,
they might be working in a call center, they might be a corporate employee,
could be just an employee and they basically say
“Hey we will sign up to solve problems” and they just do this between things
that they’ve got to do, usually most of the time their boss
is really happy with it because it’s helping customers
at Best Buy. Do you pay them? But they’re employed by Best Buy. But there’s no extra pay for this? No, no. I mean it’s volunteer,
they decide to do it. What’s interesting is that if they’re
in the store they’re actually helping the same customers
that they’re helping either coming into the store so they’re just
meeting people where they are. So that’s a useful little wave,
about 3000 people have signed up for it and it’s just a useful, helpful tool
that came out of using Twitter and so I just – that’s what it was. And our last point was it’s more valuable
listening to them than talking to them. Thank you, George.
Are we ready to end? Owen, do you have anything
from MySpace? We’ll do some feedback from Facebook?
Randi you want to? Sure. So we threw out the same question
to people on Facebook as we were discussing and in about two minutes we had 6000
responses come in and overwhelmingly, people are saying making people
more connected with their friends, I was secretly breathing
a sigh of relief that playing games online more was a – That’s a sample of 6000 replying
online in the last 15minutes? Two minutes. Okay. And then what was interesting
is there was a some interesting age differences
so we see people who are 35+ are more interested in the games
and gaming section and it was also interesting
to see how being aware of current events also ranged
pretty important to people, especially young people,
we’re seeing 10%, pretty significantly larger than game
playing as being aware of the news and what’s going on in the world. It’s just interesting I think
to bring that many people to the conversation also. Yes, thank you.
Very good. So next table, you want to report for
that table or is there anyone… I’m David… First of all my mother is addicted
to Farm Ville so keep your mothers away
from the games. She drives to the house
and then she opens the computer and like – to feed the cow
before she’ll talk to me. It’s dangerous this Farm Ville thing. But I think the game part’s new. Speaking of the games,
I’m just going to try and find some of the things from
our table that I haven’t heard yet. I think there was a good discussion
about whether social networks waste time or add time
and I think the consensus from most of the people at the table
is that social networks have improved value that they’re
saving both time and money. There were companies that had cut their
marketing budgets by 8% because social networks were a more
effective way to get the word out and their employees were doing it. People were having meetings
for work reasons and saving time because
they just knew a lot more and were finding faster answers. So I think the general view
was the impact on society was to increase its value by saving time
and money. In terms of the risk, and I weigh it because I think we had a slightly
different view about the honesty issue. I think we have
a real concern about trust and a real concern about truth
not because people are inherently not truthful but because there isn’t
enough literacy to know what is truth and what is not. And we had profound stories
that social networks gave wrong information about companies
which killed their stock prices and then people made it back
so there’s no regulation on this, the regulations haven’t
caught up with it. We think there’s a real risk
of the fact that there is a generational knowledge
being passed, that people are using more education
and… than teachers, they always prefer to do that
but now it’s becoming easier, their reputations can move quite quickly
and there’s a real thinking and I think we were hearing that earlier
that people are moving fast. So we do see a real risk
to having literacy, education, teaching catch
up with this phenomenon. Then lastly, in terms of what
to do many things, one is addressing the literacy issue,
the other is we feel very strongly about the digital divide. There are 4 billion people whose access to the internet
is through their mobile phones. They really use SMS,
they need vaccinations, they need to care for their children,
they need news. The economics and the technology
are moving to more advanced things but we can’t forget these people
because if they don’t come along with us we’re creating two societies,
not one and that won’t be good
for society or its economics. Very good.
Thank you, David. So this table, who reports?
Owen? So if anyone wants to intervene we have
a little bit more than 10 minutes left so let me know and at the end I will ask
all the discussion leaders to wrap up the session and talk to us
about what they learned during the session again so we have 10 minutes.
Owen. Great. First of all to the person
that brought me the water, thank you. I think I’ve never been so happy
to receive a bottle of water before. I can speak again. We had a pretty broad ranging discussion
that went a number of different areas. The three themes that
I think came out of it were what impact can we have now
that social networking is where it is and I think the information
that you shut down one social network inside
of a company or inside a community and another social network
just simply spurts up and takes off, people move their social networking
to another platform, I think the general consensus around
the table was that the genie is out of the bottle,
this digital disruption has occurred and so we then try to direct the
conversation towards “Okay,
how does that impact society? What do we want to do?
What should we do?” One great point that was made by Jeremy
was that there really is a difference and that we should separate the
issues of privacy and regulation of data. And this notion that data lives on forever
and that there is a potential role for regulation in terms of how it is
that we should protect society in terms of how we manage the data both
in how companies use it towards business and monetization strategies
as well as how it is available and certainly the role of government
and the term “big brother” was certainly brought up in availability
of that data far into the future. And then the last thing
that came up at our table and unfortunately we weren’t able to go
into but I thought was interesting, I think there was general interest
in our table is our social networks truly bringing together global
communities like we oftentimes think or hear that they are
or are they really just bringing together the communities that exist…
to extend them maybe country by country and one of the examples
that was brought up was there are social networks in certain
countries that are much, much larger – that are the dominant
social networks that aren’t MySpace or Facebook
or Twitter which I think we often perceive
as the dominant social networks that the entire globe is using. We weren’t able get into the discussion
but I thought the risk was an interesting one so that
was what our table discussed. Okay,
thank you very much. I was trying to go to see
what people were saying on Twitter but there looks like we have a
so let’s hear this one out. Are people in social networks
moving too fast, sacrificing truth
and reputation? Lots of areas like hundreds
and hundreds of pieces of feedback here. Has anyone have any question
or remark before we ask for discussion leaders to wrap up the session? Okay so let’s have a look at
I was trying to find a question in there. That’s one of the filtering issues
here which you can see is that filtering the questions
from the rest is not the best. All right, so I’m going to ask
the discussion leaders to Reid do you want
to wrap up the session? I’m sure you can share
with us what you’ve learned and where you see this is going. I’m going to try and pass you the mike,
very far away. So this is something – I won’t take this
as what do I learn because these are things I live
and breathe on a daily basis. What I will say is some of the things
that I think have emerged as means or ideas I think
that some of the key questions here are from hopefully mostly
for good or majorly for good. There is an inevitable tidal wave
of what’s happening in terms of everyone being present
with these technologies. And while the maybe potential
institutional back lash, there maybe some question about
is open inherently good although I think many people
will defend transparency and openness is inherently good
and maybe some companies should be a little more open. I think that the question
is really given the fact that that ship has sailed
and we do live in an environment where we are living in a network world,
the question then becomes how do you do that effectively,
how do you minimize risk issues, and how do you maximize
the benefits that you can get from this. And for example in terms
of Facebook polls, staying connected is extremely important
not just socially but also professionally in terms
of what’s going on in your industry. Industries are in the process
of I think a lot of transition. You can just ask any journalist
about what’s going on and you’ll get a very good insight
into how much these technologies are actually changing the landscape
in which we live. And so both individually
I think it should be good to have a kind of what is your personal social
media strategy but also in terms of the organizations
and what you’re trying to accomplish. I think thematically in terms
of the fact that when you have this openness what kinds
of things can you accomplish? Can you find talent and expertise
two degrees away from you? Can you publicize what your mission
is or find people in the world to participate in discussion
that will help you with those things? And I think that as you identify
the issues I don’t think you can hold back the future,
I think you can just try to still the car a little bit because the ship
is left port. Thank you. Thank you, Reid. So Gina maybe?
Don and then Evan. Gina are you ready?
Don do you want to start? Randi I’m sorry Mark is not here
because I wanted to say to him please don’t send out an email
to 350 million people because one of the unintended
consequences of that was for people who are Mark’s friends,
all of a sudden the whole world wanting to get closer to Mark
sent friend requests to people like me. I wondered what’s going on,
I was getting hundreds of friend requests coming
in here every hour and it’s like I must have done
something really amazing. Okay,
I’ll just make one observation, I’d like to go back into this thing
about the issue about journalists and that Michael talked about this world
where we all thought that journalists and the traditional newspapers
with the source of all truth and somebody said why
is that the case. Well obviously it has to do
with the character of the old media versus the news buff and they were able
to establish that view because they in fact ran the press
and we had the traditional media that was one,
that it was centralized and you can control the message
so what we’re talking about today is there’s a new medium
that’s highly distributed, it’s decentralized, it’s one-to-one,
it’s many of the many, and freedom of the press
was a great idea especially if you’re one of the press. Well now we kind of all do. So we have this thing that sort
of has this awesome neutrality and will it be good,
will it be bad, will it make us more open
or not or whatever. To me this is a reflection
of everything that’s good and bad in society
and it will be what we want it to be which is why issues like censorship,
to make sure that they really have privacy controls
and so what are really key issue but it’s not just for them,
it’s for all of us in terms of the way they use this technology to ensure that it’s used
for the public good and for the good of all
of us basically. Thank you Don.
Gina? So let me maybe just summarize some
of what I think are the interesting contrarian views that I actually think
came out in this conversation that I thought was really cool and also something we should
continue to talk about. One is secrecy
and some of the most powerful companies today in terms of driving growth
and change and real revenue are much more secretive
than if you take corporations as a whole, I think we need to look at that. I think there are some sort of standard
ways we talk about privacy or transparency or trust
at sort of a macro level, I think we have to start from here
and leaving this conversation getting more and more granular
in that conversation. In some cases privacy matters
and privacy is paramount and I think in other situations
we are going to be more transparent and comfortable and I think from here
I would encourage all of us to sort of take it down the level
in terms of granularity. And I think the last point that was made
here is that that it’s worth spending more time on is the fact that small
changes do make a big difference and it is so easy whether you’re creating
services as some of us in this room are and evolving them dynamically
that small decisions in the product actually have in some
cases intending consequences and in other cases unintended
consequences that need to be looked at and everybody is moving so fast
and you’re talking about this volume of people using these social
technologies in different ways, our CTO describes
it as three-dimensional chess, and I think that that
is very accurate here. So I think there are
so many things that have been great that
we’ve covered this morning and I think the conversations
and really the places where there is tension
and where there are contrarian views are really the places to go from this. Gina before we pass it to George,
since the mike is here, just one question. You have a collection
of how many social networks on Ning? There have been over two million Ning
networks created with 5000 new ones created every day. So I just wanted some of your views on – Some of those are domain-mapped so
Camscore doesn’t actually – just as insight. So some people are saying
that a huge – Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace will like take it all
and I just wanted your views on that. Are we going to have more millions
of social networks or is it going to consolidate
into five or ten? I don’t think it’s going to consolidate,
I mean, whenever you see technology trends
you do see dominant players in specific things, whether it’s
LinkedIn professional identity, whether it’s Facebook to connect you
to the people that you know in your life and you went to school with
and others or whether it’s about meeting new people around your interests
and passions, I actually think that all of these work
so well together that it’s not as though it’s some game
and I think that when you actually look at how technologies generally evolve
they tend to go from their own fixed experiences into platform experiences
that have a lot of different ways for people to interact with them
and there’s a place for both. Thank you,
Gina. So real quick, we have
a few minutes left, George. Just a few quick thoughts on trust. Forrester has done a number
of surveys on trusted media and blogs are one
of the least trusted media in the United States below magazines,
newspapers, TV, one of the least trusted media are blogs. My feeling after two hours here
is that this all feels very immature. It feels like we’re sitting
here on campfires and why it’s
like we’re just chewing on bones, it just feels like we’re just
getting going here. That being said the door will not close,
the door will open even wider. And if you look at our data
on the Y-generation, that’s 18 to 28 versus
the X-generation which is 29 to 40, you see incredible velocity towards
all these media. So it is coming. And I have a friend who’s my age
who said none of the cool stuff will happen until we’re all dead, so we all could die before
all the cool stuff could happen. It feels immature but we’re going there. Thank you very much.
Evan Williams. I agree with the notion that it’s very,
very early and I think of all the changes we’ve talked
about probably we’re underestimating where the changes will happen
and how much they will happen to these technologies. Then on a positive note one thing I
don’t think I’ve talked about enough and really changes society
is where the dramatic things happen in society is that we don’t have freedom
of expression or we’re undergoing crisis and this is something
that I think these technologies do in a powerful way
that didn’t happen before. Basically if you give people
a way to form groups and to find that there’s someone else
out there who shares a notion to do something, the likelihood
of doing something dramatically skyrockets and this is something that we’ve seen
on Twitter many times they get excited with simple things
like in a story we heard a couple of years ago when someone
tweeted something in Toronto and it was around Christmas
and it was really cold outside and they got the notion to go outside
and do a spontaneous sort of effort to go help the homeless people
and give them clothes and food. And it was a person sitting alone
in their apartment and because they were able to connect
with others online they formed a group who just went out to the streets
and did that right then and it became something
that they did regularly. And then you see the huge movements
to help people out in Haiti currently on all the social networks. And I just tweeted
and I learned a new term from Oreo here, slaptivism, it’s about people feeling like
they did something by putting a ribbon on or tweeting
that you should donate money, perhaps if they haven’t donated
money themselves, and feeling good about that,
that is definitely happening but I think it also is a fact that more
people are doing stuff because they’re motivated
by others around them and they’re connected to instead
of sitting in their apartment and that’s very promising to me.
Thank you. Thank you, Evan.
Mousa Musa. Yeah I think we’ve learned
something really big here. As the statistic on Facebook
is that young people are more aware of current events, they’re
more interested in current events, right? And with the terms
that people are backing social causes on social media I don’t see a reason why
we shouldn’t make them more social, while we shouldn’t have
a branch dedicated to social causes because it’s not just about social causes,
there’s also business in it as well, you’re attracting teenagers. And as Forrester,
the statistic is people under 18 are double so there will be more double
people interested in your current events so if you just put more interest into
social activity more people will join. Thank you.
Can you pass the mike to Randi Zuckerberg while he hear
Owen Van Natta, closing remarks? It’s interesting,
we came together to talk about how social network
is changing society and I think there are a lot of really
great ways that social networking is having a super, big,
positive impact on society and some of them
have been mentioned here. We bring together this group of people
who are obviously interested in discussing this issue
and one of the things that I take away from it is we’re
all very concerned about privacy, we’re all very concerned about how youth
is operating within these social networks and how they may not understand the future
implications of what it is that they do today and one of the things I take away from
this is that somebody who is part of one of these social networks,
we have a responsibility to make sure that we are transparent
and that we don’t confuse people, that they understand
what it is that they’re doing. We may not be able to educate them
as to exactly what the repercussions will be if they put pictures up
of themselves in college that they ultimately 10 years later
are not going to want digitized and available on the web,
that s something that society and social norms are going to have to,
I think, ultimately impact but what we can do
is we can make sure that we don’t obscure things
and we don’t confuse users and it’s something that I can tell you,
as we take a much more user-centered approach to how it is
that we’re building out MySpace, we’re committed to making sure
that users at least understand exactly what privacy settings are,
what is being shared in what places and how does that information flow,
so those are my thoughts. Thank you, Owen.
Randi, closing remarks. Thanks. So at our table
we discussed identity quite a bit, I think that’s going to be the huge trend
of 2010 that we discussed how to take your identity and carry
it with you wherever you are online. I also thought there was an interesting
point too about current events and looking at people aged 13 to 17,
how interested they were. One of the questions I get asked a lot
is old media versus media which I hate but, are they cannibalizing each other. I think that there’s incredible opportunity
for every one to work better together. I think you need that social filter
of what your friends are saying but you also really need
that expert content and that’s more important
to us than ever right now. I also still agree that we’re still at the
beginning of unlocking the potential. We’ve certainly come a long way from
a few years ago when people said
“We’re just going to hire some college interns to manage
our social media presence,” and a long way from a year or two ago
when politicians were saying “I don’t know,
should I get on these sites?” and connect with people. But at the same time when I look
at how it still excited the media, it gets about like “Oh my God,
this situation happened in Haiti and people respond on Facebook
and Twitter,” I mean, of course they respond there
because that’s where people are and that’s where 350 million
or 500 million people around the world are and I hope that we get to a time
when that’s not exciting to media any more because it just fully integrated
that people understand that that’s where people
are taking online. And then the last thing,
someone made a really interesting point about – that we need
to do a little more research, we need to work with data
a little more in the academics. I think that we really are in a position
of responsibility that we need to understand the impacts
this is making on the world, how people are forming connections
in unlikely areas of the world and how that can impact
for social responsibility. Thank you, Randi,
and all the discussion leaders and all the thousand people
or so who watched us live on this… So those feed cameras are here if you want
to leave a thought about the session, just one and Steve will load
them to YouTube as well. They are not to be taken away,
please, but you can do that you can be
on the Davos channel and I want to thank you very much
and have a great World Economic Forum.

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23 Comments

  1. Sorry for the bad sound. Someone forgot to plug in the sound cable. We will try to provide a transcript for the entire session. Any volunteers?

  2. I find the LinkedIn guys comments very honest and forthcoming. In addition it appears they have no respect for your privacy. Face Book has shown their true colors on privacy issues. These guys are all about the money and will sell any information about you they have. "Old people" have a lot more wisdom than a twenty something. Wait untill these twenty somethings are 40 and need to refinance a mortgage, have a health issue or look for a new job. They may have to learn the hard way.

  3. Privacy is an "Old people" concept? Listen, I betting that this dude closes the door when he goes to the bathroom in a public place because *that* aspect of privacy *is* of concern to him; it's just when it's someone *else's* privacy that he can make a dollar off of that it becomes overblown.

  4. Reid is right, except the fact that although the web has become more social than before – privacy is still important. Sometimes I think the amount of money a person has, the inverse amount of common sense they tend to possess. My thinking is, if I made it to "Billionaire" status, I probably wouldn't be giving as much in-depth thought into something as I would if I truly cared what impact my words have. A billion dollars is more than FU money – it's FU And The Horse You Rode In On money

  5. Very informative indeed. I love how the Linked In billionaire tries to insult consumers who threaten to keep him from misusing their information. Very revealing and a warning about how we use his service.

  6. Old people issues? Are you kidding me? How old is old anyway? Speaking for the late 30's demo, we're still concerned with our privacy.

  7. I just completed a survey for LinkedIn, thanking them for helping me discontinue one of my old (duplicate) accounts. As part of the survey, I provided them with my phone number in case they wanted to call me. Yikes. What was I thinking? I can't believe the CEO could be not just arrogant but…stupid. Gosh, it makes you wonder.

  8. The CEO is out of touch with "older people." The fact that he states younger people list their cell numbers for everyone to see demonstrates the ignorance of "younger people." "Older people" have been around the block a few more times than "younger people" and have dealt with privacy issues, read up on it, and understand the seriousness of privacy. The young still have much to learn about life and just b/c they are dumb enough to post their phone number does not make them correct.

  9. HOLY SH*T! Old people issues!? hey you fat f*ck! You have OBESITY ISSUES! WHy would anyone listen to a fat stupid billionaire!? I used to believe in Linked-In. Not anymore. Call me "old" at fifty six, but to see a young, fat super-rich jack-ass tell me that I am having issues with privacy makes my blood boil. I am going to send out a word for people to now BOYCOTT Linked-In! Hasn't done jack-squat for me anyway…or anyone else I know!

  10. Hoffman, Zuckerberg, Gates, etc.
    I guess we should repeal the 4th Amendment because of famewhores, since it's obsolete. I like my privacy, and it transcends generations of young and old who just want to mind their own fucking business.
    MYOFB you human parade float.

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