i am working on a digital influence program at the moment for a client who would like to better understand the people that blog about them. the client is a multinational tech company and it is the australian operation that has engaged us. as such, they asked us to locate all of the australian bloggers they write about them.
dutifully, i set about the task of seeking out these bloggers over the weekend. what i started to notice was, that the people who were talking about my client were not necessarily in australia.
this then begged the question: “do borders impact influence online?”
i am starting to come to the realisation that perhaps for some subjects, the significance of borders and nationality are being rapidly diminished.
obviously, where localism is key to the post the theory would not apply. if for instance the blogger of baghdad was in the united states, it clearly would have changed its effect!
however, in subjects such as technology the country from which a blog originates has a much lesser bearing on its influence.
in my past life as a technologist, my media consumption was a steady diet of:
there is some localised content there. zdnet was localised for australia, but other than that, the others were based in the u.s or u.k.
i think the key thing here is that technology is universal in the developed world. most of the same technology is used across the globe. if communication is the reciprocal creation of meaning, then two people discussing the same technology topic on either side of the world would be able to understand each other because of their similar experiences with these technologies.
to bring this back to point, the next logical question is then if you are a tech company looking at your digital influence strategy should you draw your demarcation points around borders?
we are no longer talking about old media now where the local paper boy comes around to deliver your newspaper with local news. the internet respects not these boundaries.
do we as social media people now have to start revisiting how we divide work in terms of regions?
are we in fact trying force an old world model onto new world media that clearly does not fit?
i am starting to think that we are.