There was a video clip I watched over a year ago now where Seth Godin was saying something like “it’s pointless to have 1000 people ‘following’ you if you can’t call any of em to crash on their couch when you’re in town.” Of course he was speaking to the strangeness of having all these “friends” if the relationships never becomes something more than a Twitter-notch.
Today I find myself on the road for a business trip in SoCal and since I had a free evening I decided to float it out there and see where the spirit would lead. Three text messages later and I have an invite to crash at Mark’s house in Costa Mesa. I met Mark about 6 months ago when we were looking for speakers for CGDC. Introduced over Facebook we eventually got on the phone and I foundation kindred spirit. Not only does Mark’s professional resume read like a list of gaming’s greatest hits but he’s a fired up kingdom warrior and he’s a ball of contagious energy. He was an awesome addition to the CGDC line up and now – he’s a genuine friend.
He represents that kind of relationship that is the BEST of what social media can offer- the unfettered and world-wide ability to make friends in ways that never existed before, but like most technophiles I’m only partly talking about the tools. Humanity hasn’t changed since the flood, we still long for significance, security, and e desire to be known. All technologies are measured ultimately by their ability to help us meet those universal and ancient needs.
Tonight I have a place to crash partly because of Facebook – but only partly. If Mark and I hadn’t both taken the opportunity to move past likes and tweets, I’d be sleeping at some Comfort Inn.