March 3, 2011

Forgot your laptop in the train? No problem, Twitter is here

From personal experience (but without the means to actually verify the story): On 15 February I saw in my Twitter feed a request to retweet a post about a laptop found in the train between Groningen and Leeuwarden (see below)
I retweeted the post without paying much attention but somehow I the case cme back to my mind a few days later. Curious for the outcome of the action I asked the person who posted the request whether the owner was found. The answer was (guess what) Yes!! Amazed I sent a second question asking how long it took this to happen and the answer was even more amazing: the owner of the laptop was found in 30 minutes! (for those who do not believe this the posts are available )

Incredible and scary at the same time. I can think of hundreds of examples that such effects can be useful as well as many others that the effects can be undesirable or even dangerous. One thing is sure, our world is now dominated by social media, almost nothing is any more impossible and there are no more secrets. If this is a good or bad thing, depends I guess from the perspective you look to it. For example for the former and current Middle East dictators the Social Media is the worst nightmare they ever had. For the other side of the coin I suggest reading The Cult of the Amateur of Andrew Keen.