I don’t think anyone necessarily shares things because they think someone else will love it, and the friends you have are the ones that allow you to geek out about the things that you are absolutely passionate about, and that’s the reason you stay friends with them: not because you’re talking about things with them to talk about things that interest them; it’s because it interests you and you’re absolutely passionate about it and they have enough of a commonality to let you explore it.
This is what “James” has to say about Sparks, one of the products that makes up Google+, Google’s new social thing.
This is not at all why I (or, it seems, any of my friends) share things. I share things that I know the people listening to me will like. Certainly not all of them all the time, of course, but “nerding out” just for my own sake is rather masturbatory, isn’t it? That’s what blogs are for1. The idea that the concept of friendship is when another human being “allow[s] you to geek out2” is so Googly.
What is Sparks, anyway? There’s another video that I think is meant to explain it more, but it doesn’t. It looks like, uh, saved searches? Is this Google alerts with sharing? Is the sharing stuck inside Sparks? Is Sparks the equivalent of Facebook walls, if Facebook wall posts always required links? It almost feels like Google is trying to bring RSS to normal people, maybe, but if this is aimed at normal people, there is no compelling reason for them to stop using Facebook and migrate (altogether, as a series of circles) to this thing.
Also, what the fuck at the actual content of this video. “Drew” (who is “Drew?” Does he know “James?”) shares something and one of his circle people doesn’t like it and another does. He +1s the guy that likes the thing. The video ends. This does not make me whoa crazy excited to start Sparksing.
Lest this distinction is challenged: a blog is a collection of everything I, its author, cares about, perhaps singularly, and others who are specifically interested in my point of view may come to visit it (but it is otherwise easy to ignore). Contrast this to a social network, where I’m opting in to a much faster, lighter, aggregated stream of multiple people’s fancies. (See also Stock and Flow). ↩
“Geeking out” and “nerding out” are used interchangeably here but I don’t think they mean the same thing, “James.” ↩