Soviet arcade games didn’t have high score tables. Here’s an excellent article on the whole philosophy around that.
Before I get started here, let me just say this – I’m all in with capitalism. As Churchill said, it’s the best of a bad bunch of systems. So don’t start calling me a commie. Or do. Send me a Che Guevara t-shirt and I’ll do the ‘fist in the air in the land of hypocrisy’ face.
The approach that the Soviets took to arcade games would help fix our social media experience.
The trouble with social media, both for brands (boo! boo! I work for a brand, I’m a hypocrite) and individuals, is that it is so number focused. How many ‘Likes’ do you have? How many followers? What’s your Klout score?
How many nights do crank yourself into unconsciousness after hating yourself for your lack of social media achievement?
[Sign in my house: 0 days since Mic’s last breakdown.]
Now imagine if we suddenly erased all the follower numbers or simply made them non-public.
You could share them with people but over time, with luck, it would become a big crass, like making it rain at someone’s wedding or showing a potential partner your gold AMEX card.
Social media’s value isn’t the numbers, it’s the conversation.
The best analogy is the faintly laughable desire among some men (#notallmen) to talk about the size of their genitals. It’s not the size, it’s how you use it. As with penises, so with Twitter accounts.