This week I came across an interesting article in the Technology Review. The title of the article by David Talbot is quite revealing on itself: Personalized Campaigning. It talks about the changes happening in relation to the way political campaigning are being conducted.
It seems to me that the author’s description of the introduction of many web 2.0 technologies into the process are a good example of how the virtual and real world mingle and people are called to manage their transitions and commitments (this leads to the next transformation, the end of the ephemeral, in the sense that we are now creating and leaving “digital footprints”, more in the next post about this). Managing transitions and commitments means that the way one presents himself on the web, or other virtual places, for encounters takes into account the extent one is willing to engage in real world social decisions and activities.
The connection between these two transformations (the hyper-connectivity and the end of the ephemeral) is important, because our willingness (considering the challenges regarding privacy and personal history) to engage and be able to maintain coherence will depend on our ability to create and manage these transitions, as well as understand how availability of information about ourselves and others should not hinder interpretation. People need narratives about themselves and others, and it is not the abundance of “factual” information that should curtail creativity and moments of wonder.