Are we moving too fast?

It’s my day job (and I spend most of my nights and mornings) staying on top of social technologies, being aware of them, experimenting with them, breaking them, and analyzing them for brands and clients. At least two days this week I worked 15 hours. If I can barely keep up, (I’m not the only one) so how do you?

Are we moving too fast? Leave a comment here, or on the media page.

Update Monday Morning: Thank you all for the kind words and support, I took a few days off blogging (although I had some other work to catch up on) but am now refreshed. I’ve made a resolution to try to look at the trends of the movement, and where I see traction, then I’ll take a closer look at the tools.

  • The bubble is going to BURST!

  • It’s mind boggling for me too. But as time has past, I’ve begun to greater understand the underlying components and applications easier, to where it’s just a conceptual mix&match. Now from left-field, we’re beginning to see the rise of Flex applications some of which will be creeping onto the desktop via Adobe AIR. Imagination, high-bandwidth, and tech will conjure up even greater things every year.

    So I can imagine as an analyst it can get tiring looking at application potential, extrapolating trends, market strategy, etc. With overblown enthusiasm in the air sometimes, we have a human need to be objectively skeptical.

  • Well, I think it’s pretty clear that YOU are moving too fast, Jeremiah. You’re prolific. Take a nap sometime, eh? 😉

    You raise a good point, one which we all face at various times (often when we’re either out of blogging ideas or daunted by 100+ unread RSS items)…

    I try to remember that it’s a marathon, not a sprint.

  • Its tough – but personally I rely on people like you not sleeping so that you can tell me what’s going on. In return I provide a modest and simplified link blog (http://richardstacy.wordpress.com) for others to benefit from my experience of benefiting from your experience. And so it goes on … its what social media is all about!

    Keep up the good work.

  • Apollo Gonzales

    The pace has picked up for me too. But only because I discovered your site a few weeks ago. But now I’m getting answers instead of mounting confusion. You do an amazing job here, and as long as you can keep going I’ll keep reading.

    Outside of this site, I have to agree that things are moving at a breakneck pace. I work for an environmental organization that does a lot of work with energy, and the talk seems to be turning from “oil independence” to “energy efficiency”. That has become my daily challenge, to be more efficient in the way I look at all of this data. I haven’t made much progress though. Any thoughts?

  • Signup fatigue is starting to set in. I too need to follow various sites and services for work, and I have to trust that all these companies will treat my data securely and with respect. I continue to hope that initiatives such as OpenSocial and OpenID will reduce the time it takes to get up and running on social-networking services. For me, I don’t think I’m moving too fast — just in too many directions.

  • Brian Block

    Just trying to catch up is difficult. I’m a little late in the game and between books, google feedreader and other great sites and articles, I’m still reading news from days ago. I think this will all level out soon as we come to a brick wall with innovation and spend more time mastering what we’ve learned. After that we can move on again to bigger and brighter things. If anything, do it for the sake of the enthusiastic bunch that doesn’t have the time to keep up.

  • We are trying to do too much individually. It’s better to have a niche and know it than to be everything to everyone.

    I’ve been getting requests for a Facebook user group on Now Is Gone. I had to say no, because I just can’t do anymore. The cool thing was folks started their own group!

  • Bob

    The bubble has already burst. In my pants!

  • Your routine is way too hectic, IMO; you’re a filter letting the good stuff through, but every now and then the filter needs to get taken out and cleaned or replaced.

    Take a break, come to Cape Town for the summer. Get some beach sand in the Kindle 😉

  • Thanks all…I’m taking a break this weekend.

  • From commoncraft.com

    When we arrived at our rental house in Mexico, we found well-worn notebook with hints about the town and surroundings. On one of the pages was a story that I had heard before, but for this particular vacation, and at this point in our careers, it had extra meaning. It matches, with a bit of exaggeration, our goals when it comes to managing our lifestyle.
    A boat docked in a tiny Mexican village and an American tourist complimented the Mexican fisherman on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them.

    “Not very long,” said the fisherman.

    “But then why didn’t you stay out longer and catch more?” Asked the American.

    The Mexican explained that his small catch was sufficient to meet his needs and those of his family.

    The American asked, “But what do you do with the rest of your time?”

    “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children and take a siesta with my wife. In the evenings, I go to the village to see my friends, have a few drinks, play guitar and sing songs… I have a full life.”

    The American interrupted “I have an MBA from Harvard and I can help you! You should start by fishing longer every day. You can then sell the extra fish you catch. With the extra revenue, you can buy a bigger boat. With the extra money the bigger boat will bring, you can buy more boats until you have an entire fleet of trawlers. Instead of selling fish to the middle man, you can go directly to the processing plant and maybe even own your own plant. Then, you can leave this little village and direct your enterprise from Mexico City or even New York City!

    “How long would that take?” asked the Mexican.

    “Twenty, maybe 25 years.” replied the American.

    “And after that?”

    “Afterwards? Then it gets really interesting, answered the American, laughing. “When your business gets really big you can start sellingstocks and make millions!”

    “Millions? Really? And after that?”

    “After that, you’ll be able to retire, live in a tiny village near the coast, sleep late, play with your children, catch a few fish, take a siesta, and spend your evenings drinking and enjoying your friends!”

    We don’t have time to sleep late and have a siesta, but the spirit of this story rings true to us. It’s all about lifestyle and doing what you love on a day-to-day basis. We will continue to work hard and push for success, but at the same time, build a business that supports the life that we want right now, not in 30 years.

  • I don’t. But I don’t get paid for it 🙂

  • @mike wins best comment of the day award.

  • Great story by Mike. I actually referenced a quote from Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town” on my blog last week. If you know the play, it’s about small town life (and death). One of the characters dies and realizes that she didn’t stop to enjoy life:

    “It goes so fast. We don’t have time to look at one another.”

    Unplugging every once in a while is not only recommended, it’s essential.

    And let’s not forget that those of us who work in this field are largely ahead of the curve. The mainstream, I would argue, is about 2 years behind where we are…

  • From the agency perspective, it’s virtually impossible to keep up, but some do it quite admirably. In this case, it’s not a question of whether or not we’re moving too fast. People are moving, and if agencies can’t keep up with people, then they serve no purpose whatsoever.

  • I stopped working weekends when my kids were born.

  • Aren’t we all connected enough to indulge a self inflicted boycott to unplug on a global level for a whole weekend, if not for an entire month, at least once a quarter? To realize, as addictive as it is, that we’re responsible enough and as a group, collectively say, “I agree” to digitally disconnect? It’d be newsworthy and bring attention to the phenomena at the same time.

    I tell my wife that I’m intrigued by social media, it’s fascinating and “I do” enjoy it – it’s not work.

    I’ve got to tell you: It was an eye opener this week with:

    -Jeremiah’s post above -yay!
    -Geoff L. being too tapped for the FB group -yay!
    -Steve B. making videos with his wife in bed

    You’re the kind of guys that’d need to drive a united “time-out”. Just a responsible thought from an at-times irresponsible guy. After all, this is the ‘we’re all together social er evolution”. What a great way to show that we (the people) are in control of ourselves. right?

    (I thought I was just on some newbie learning curve that’d tapper off to some reasonable slope. yikes folks!)

  • Terri MacMillan

    You provide a great service, and are now in my iGoogle…please take time for yourself, because health is the most important thing. For myself, I’m leaving one situation and planning a new venture that combines my favorite of these new/social/multi/media ’emergings’…the key filter for me is ‘my favorite’. I can’t do/understand/absorb everything, much as I want to. So my information is filtered with key criteria in mind – people, technologies and new traditions that help me to: write strong scripts, produce good audio and video, deploy it where it counts, and interact with the community that results… And I’ve gotten better at saying: nope, can’t take it in.

    This emerging world is actually a lot of fun, thanks to folks like you!

  • The challenge is not really keeping up to speed on social media or tech trends generally. It’s really about balancing family, finance, professional, health, sports, lifestyle, and spiritual pursuits.

    For me, I approach social media and tech trends like a cat sleeping next to a big human. Just reach out a paw and touch the human bedfellow. That way you’ll know first when they move (and you get out of the way).

    RSS is my ‘cat-paw’ monitoring tool.

  • we are-but we love it and that passion comes through in what we do. what else would we be doing? perhaps different media but same ‘obsessions’.

    We depend on you, like others other there but then become filters ourselves to others around our ‘personal’ circles- at each level deeper down the funnel.

    It could be worse you could be a journalist for some crazy beat.

    thank you for moving fast! enjoy your weekend.

  • ED

    Jeremiah

    What’s moving too fast is the hype, the jargon and the hustle and unfocused energy of change for the sake of change. People are running through the hallways saying we need “social networks”. When asked what they mean they all respond with “Facebook”.

    The core principles of marketing have not changed. We still network, we still position, we still promote, and we still leverage PR etc. The tools and the terms and the way in which we go about things have changed and are changing at light speed.

    The real core change is that the consumer is now in the driver’s seat. It used to be that you had to go to the company and have them tell you about their product in nonsensical messaging BS. You had to do this because before you had any real information you had to be at the RFP stage. Companies controlled the dialogue and engagement.

    But the multitude of media channels, people communicating, blogging and connecting with each other has shifted the power to the individual. This means that to be a successful marketer to you to focus on building a 2-way road between your company and its prospects and between prospects. On this highway there must be an exchange of value added content between the two parties.

    Stay calm and keep doing what you’re doing.

    ED

  • Yes the pace is very fast. Personally I feel I am constantly playing catch up with social media. I thought I was active online years ago and yet I feel I completely missed the significance of blogging and YouTube. I wonder what I am missing now.

  • If you try to do everything you will not succeed — and you will not do anything well.

    I used to work 15 hour days when I was younger. It wasn’t good for me or for the people I was working for.

    You can’t “keep up with” social media, it’s like boiling the ocean.

    So, what’s really important to you? Figure that out and you’ll get somewhere.

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  • I have authorized my wife to tell me when it is to much! And right now she is saying “get off that computer, get a life, it is saturday night, get to bed!”

    🙂

    So I´m signing out now

    Ludvik

  • Jeremiah – we’re all in agreement that you’re leading the way & can take some time off. (We promise to not race ahead). 🙂
    I’m finding that when I go to my home offices I have to go offline because the communicating is in real time (as it should be) & I owe my company that.

    And I’ve decided that I owe myself some down time too (my family more so). I don’t view my social networking & building community as work, but I guess 15 hrs in front of a computer each day is excessive. It’s going to take self-discipline though.

    Re-energize for Seattle on Tues/Wed. It’s going to be great to connect in person!

  • I don’t keep up. My RSS reader is full of unread feeds. I’ve got at least three books on social media marketing that I’ve yet to finish. Heck, just attempting to consume these daily tomes you call blog posts is a feat in and of itself. (And that’s not a criticism. You’re very prolific. Plus, I’m a slow reader!)

    Anyway, I’m content to do the best I can, not unlike that Mexican fisherman. If I learn just a little bit each day, it’s enough. It has to be for time won’t allow more.

  • These interesting posts seem to point in the same direction – towards prioritizing. For me, that’s nearly the hardest and most productive work. The real hard work is to prioritize in my family –

    I think it’s harder now to prioritize because we can hear from so many more people, with so many ever broadening ideas, or potentials.

    It’s all still simple though, if you can keep focussed… right? If you can provide each person with whom you interact an authentic expression of your own individuality and a bit of really clean listening.

    Something like that.

    One of the reason’s I appreciate Jeremiah is that he (you, man) seems to have a unique and authentic voice.

  • Jeremiah,

    Are we going too fast? Good question – I think everyone who answers here is probably a pebble. The swimmers are also keeping space but the Surfers and others are still coming to terms with the 2005 bloog explosion. They will need to be nurtured and nudged to adopt the social media and this pace is too fast. The end result will be SMBs will skip a few stages and adopt the relevant technology of the day.

    Example is a parallel of Mobile adoption- China nd India skipped the PCs altogether and went directly for mobile devices. I expect if the pace remains fast there will be people who skip Blogs/ facebook and go directly to what ever is next in 2008.

    Shashi

  • Steven Maimes

    YES, we are moving too fast and creating too much. Social media landscape is exploding and if we do not get back to simple then more is not better. Also, too fast is not good for us spiritually where the goal is often to slow down… quality not quantity.

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  • Christopher Coulter

    All that work, yet nothing tangible to show, alas…

  • Love to read what you had in mind when you originally made this post two years ago!

  • Warr

    The social media aspect of technology is moving so fast, that i can’t keep up with all of the different sites and programs, you have so many of them that its hard to know which ones have good information or just good opinions. I about write an essay for my english about: Is technology moving too fast. I find it hard to stay on topic, because of all the different avenues it takes you too. I believe that we need to slow down on technology and give people a chance to understand it completely.