Dr. Kris Markman, Showing the Species How we Connect

April 1, 2009

Wednesday morning, April 1st, found the Social Media Expedition Breakfast at the Holiday Inn at the University of Memphis. After some opening remarks from Social Media Expedition’s Dave Barger, The mic was handed over to Kris Markman, Ph.D., from the University of Memphis, for her presentation, “A Species Driven to Connect.”

Dr. Markman’s presentation focused on how society functions with technology. Her central assertion is that social technologies are nothing new. Though they use new tools to cover greater distances faster, it all essentially sums up to basic communication – Facebook, even as it nears ubiquity, is just a fancy version of cave painting communication.

Humans, she continued, simply need other humans for survival.

So we communicate as we always have, and we find brand new ways to communicate. One pattern Dr. Markman has noticed is that society is beginning to stratify naturally among those who can more readily adapt to new modes of communication.

Markman cites Pew Internet and American Life numbers that show that Americans, along with being divided along lines of behavior, can also be divided among the age groups and economic traits that allow them this behavior – but that doesn’t necessarily fall along the same lines as would be expected.

For example, podcasting is more common among the Generation X set, even though they aren’t as into things like Facebook or Massively Multiplayer Games.

Essentially, what Markman seems to be saying is that what makes online communications so interesting is that it’s so difficult to pin down the demographics of it in a general sense, because the information skews from example to example.

After the presentation, as always, we broke into smaller group discussions, including topics such as blogging, Facebook for business, Twitter, and social bookmarking. There was even some demand for information about Yahoo! Pipes – if you’ve got an interest in or knowledge of Yahoo! Pipes, (or Twitter, Facebook, or any other tools) please, by all means, join us for the next Social Media Expedition Breakfast, the first Wednesday of May.

Creative Commons License
blogpost by lunaweb is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

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One Response to “Dr. Kris Markman, Showing the Species How we Connect”

  1. [...] 9, 2009 Last week was a busy week. Not only did we have the Social Media Expedition breakfast, but we gave a half-day workshop for the Grizzlies [...]

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