We talked yesterday about Innovation Over Tradition, but there is a danger is that in not understanding what the ‘traditions’ here are, and then moving away from anything that doesn’t seem ‘techie’ or ‘new’.

I believe that Social (the mindset before the media) is our default form of communication. Two ears, one mouth. Can’t follow a discussion of more than 10 people really. Some lead, some follow. The conversation changes as each person speaks. It’s fluid, dynamic, guided, adapting.

Then, we package the discussion up, put it on CD, ship it, and we have broadcast. It doesn’t change anymore.

Social is always changing, which is why I believe all innovation comes from social. Social innovation, broadcast duplication.

Your Leading Thoughts

  1. Do you agree? Can you look at your own history and find agreement with this theory?
  2. If so, what are the repercussions of this?

Archived Comments

  • malcolm12boxes

    Imagine you are a wind-blown seed. One day the wind takes you far from the tree in which you were formed and deposits you in the soil. The soil may be fertile; it may not. If fertile, the seed begins a dialogue with the soil and the sun and rain and grows – into another tree, not the same tree. That’s broadcast.

    Much stuff that I encounter in social media I treat as broadcast. The ideas enter my head and as Matt Ridley put it on TED the other day (http://bit.ly/9LmNxI) have sex with one another. If I am lucky, the outcome will be creative and innovative. Broadcast can seed creativity and innovation.

    On the other hand, social can breed groupthink; it can create the illusion of ‘popularity’ on slender evidence – what psychologists call availability error. Social can suppress innovation as well as engender it.

    Post-It notes were not invented by a committee. The inventor at 3M, Art Fry, persisted alone for some time – THEN he broadcast his idea by leaving them on people’s desks and noted what happened. Given the fact of a Post-It note, sharing applications may well be social.

    I think we need a synthesis; we need to understand what social does, and what broadcast does.Broadcast can help ideas get out so they can evolve in new minds and different conditions. The fact that it is ‘one-way’ gives the recipients the power to do what they like with them.

    I don’t buy the implication social good, broadcast bad. We need both, and sometimes the same medium (as in Twitter) provides both.

  • / Scott Gould


    Thanks for these thoughts. At no point do I say that social is good and broadcast is bad – however I am saying that both have different uses, with broadcast being the more prominent mode over the recent years.

    Good thoughts – I am mulling over!


  • malcolm12boxes

    I take your good/bad point. Unfair to lay it at your feet. However, there is quite a bit of that around at the moment.

  • / Scott Gould

    You’re right – there is loads of it and it is complete ignorane.

    Even Christianity, my favourite message of all, has large portions of broadcast in it. In fact the Bible itself is a broadcast channel :-)