Twitter as Tribal

Michael Lopp on Twitter:

The act of one human being choosing to follow another is a big deal. As long as nefarious intent is not in play, the connection creates what the social science nerds like to call an affinity map; by drawing a line between you and me, we can infer that we’re somehow connected. How are we connected? Who knows? Maybe you like nerd culture? How about gel pens? We’re not really going to know until we test that link by asking a question.

…I’m eagerly watching Twitter evolve and organize itself. I’m dazzled as third parties are giving Twitter memory and context. But what I care about, and what has value to me, is the tribe of people in my ecosystem. Twitter is the best social network out there;, it’s a great social search engine;, and it’s a short strategic hop from being a terrific next generation address book.

My tribe is not your tribe because you’re not using Twitter how I do. You wrote an Academy Award winning screenplay, only follow a few people, but have thousands following you. You sell shoes and follow each of the thousands of people who follow you. You are a major airline, but sound surprisingly human.

Twitter’s value has nothing to do with the technology.