Joho the BlogFrom circles to networks - Joho the Blog

From circles to networks

Just a terminological note:

Over the past decade, we’ve gone from talking about social circles to social networks. A circle draws a line around us. Networks draw lines among us.

(Yet more evidence — as if we needed it — that networks are the new paradigm. Bye bye, Information Age!)

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13 Responses to “From circles to networks”

  1. Another term for circles is “groups”…

  2. Circles include all the people around us. Networks exclude.

  3. I believe it is true shift of paradigm. In Circle or Group – our togetherness was limited by some proximity to something or someone – whatever it was: neighbourhod, school, workplace, family, town or country – our new togetherness is limited only by person 2 person link – relation, their number, kind and quality.

    Like it or not – but Web 2.0 is the most important global expression of this new paradigm of social relations….

  4. Ehud, I get your point about circles, but I don’t see how networks exclude. Networks connect; that’s why they’re networks.

    Of course, actual social networks can exclude people — you don’t have to friend everyone who asks — but as a mere shape, networks connect.

  5. always thought “information age” was wrong. Ag, iron, industrial, even nuclear ages were all information ages. Agreed the new term is and should be Network Age

  6. are you serious? networks have been around since homo sapiens began communicating. as a concept to characterize an age, I don’t think so. it shares the same problematic operational saliency as information age.

  7. Marc, of course we’ve had networks, but we haven’t had networks as a communications medium. At least not of this sort.

  8. nor has it ever been as global and instant.

  9. Networks are more visible and addressible now, but I don’t see groups becoming obsolete. It’s useful to be able to see who else is participating in a given thing, and useful to coordinate a set of people for action. People like affiliating and that isn’t going away. Today’s leading models of online social networks, Facebook and Twitter, have very weak support for groups, but that doesn’t mean the phenomenon is dead. There will be interesting interrelationships and overlays.

  10. Joho the Blog » From circles to networks…

    Joho the Blog » From circles to networks…

  11. […] a recent blog post, David Weinberger writes about how networks have surpassed groups in recent years, as ways of […]

  12. […] tweeted an observation of David Weinberger’s on how our language has shifted: Over the past decade, we’ve gone from talking about social […]

  13. […] recently tweeted an observation of David Weinberger’s on how our language has shifted: Over the past decade, we’ve gone from talking about social […]

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