In our time, dominant discourse has it that everything is going digital. We’re told that even things as trivial as sliced bread can and should be disrupted, a process which can be enabled by the internet and the use of social networking sites.
Yet, with the increasingly easy access to such platforms where we can write or talk to our heart’s content, crucial ideas might be getting lost. First and foremost, the idea that truly effective contact takes doing, instead of just writing and talking.
While social networking sites may allow us to tell the stories we think matter, they alone cannot represent the main building blocks of our stories. We’ve reached a stage where merely adding someone to our contact lists isn’t enough. If we already know how easy it can be to make a first contact, we should want our next generation of social tools to help us earn the right to talk to our new connections again, starting and maintaining positive and enriching conversations. This is to say that the focus of our new social tools should be on helping us recover some of the more tangible aspects that would naturally characterise social relationships, upcycling them to fit more current lifestyles.
We shouldn’t want our new tools to merely take us from one kind of “social networking bureaucracy” to the next, but rather to help us break down digitally imposed barriers, allowing us to seize the value of our networks.
Like in more conventional settings, trust must still be an important anchor for social relationships. Naturally, one of the most positive ways to gain trust is through reputation. Hence, a new generation of social tools should facilitate the process of recording and tracking our own reputation and that of people around us. Linking a positive approach to reputation with the potentialities of social networking should mean trust will start gaining value outside its initial environment, turning into an asset we can use to buy cooperation from others, even people we’ve never met.
This is what leads us to believe in the value of trust as a currency. If we’ve managed to keep your attention this far, we’d be delighted to invite you along to explore these ideas and more. Help us on our mission to prove trust is not just the flavour of the month.