Our world is an infinitely complex social system. Now, without being so bold and arrogant as to place humans above all other life on the planet, it is fascinating that our social structures allow us to live, by and large, peacefully and productively, considering how widely diverse we are socially and politically. Technology has done a great deal to foster ways that we relate to and learn from each other.

A cynical view of how social media contributes to our understanding might marginalize such technology, noting that humans use communication technology like the internet and social media to share our gastronomical choices and pictures of adorable felines. Look deeper though. Social media, especially, has played a significant role an as equalizer across the globe. The question is, how far does social media go in helping us to really experience and understand the world around us?

Well, I say that like any problem, the right tools make the solution much easier to come by. And I’ve heard it said many times that social media is just that – a tool. Even with the right tool(s) though, one must understand how a system works in order to really understand what it does. And I’m not talking about technological systems, I’m speaking of social systems. Societies, cultures. People.

It’s a very small world, after all.

Q1) As individuals/organizations, how might we use social presence to help others to know us?

Q2) Should we shy away from perspectives or points of view that we disagree with or find offensive?

Q3) What binds us together is stronger than what separates us. Agree/Disagree? Does social media draw us closer to each other?

Q4) Our attention matters. How do we decide what is acceptable and what is not in global social communities?

Q5) Can simply being curious enhance your brand? How does social media advance that objective?

Q6) What current events do you notice being shaped by social media?