Forging a New Social Contract - SXSW 2011


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This is the talk i gave at this year's SXSW to describe the new and emergent social contract we are crafting in a hyper connected world - i.e how is all this new tech impacting how we behave culturally, socially and in business.

Note: I included the "notes" inside each slide - for some reason they were not showing up as a transcript

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  • The heterogeneity of Internet users originating from different geographical zones, linguistic areas, and cultural backgrounds leads to very different conceptions related to the organization of the Internet. \n Furthermore, the enhancement of information flows between the members of civil society, based on adequate information provided for by the governing body, which allows the public to form an opinion and participate in negotiations. Additionally, the effective bridging of information asymmetries can help to avoid arbitrary or discriminatory decisions because an informed civil society is able to brand such behaviour. By realizing transparency about decision-making processes and by letting the public participate in these processes, active involvement of civil society can be encouraged. \n Therefore, efforts should be undertaken to look for a method of consensus building which includes all interested parties and creates the opportunity to make decisions acceptable for as large a part of the civil community as possible. Notwithstanding the fact that the Internet society is a newly emerging civil society, considerations taken into account in earlier contexts can lead to valuable lessons. In this respect, a theory that seems to offer a feasible approach encompasses the concept of a so-called “social contract” that is historically and philosophically addressing issues of civil society’s participation. \n\nCite as: R H Weber and R Weber, "Social Contract for the Internet Community? Historical and Philosophical Theories as Basis for the Inclusion of Civil Society in Internet Governance?", (2009) 6:1 SCRIPTed 90,  \n
  • This is not a binary conversation – there is gray here and we will celebrate it\n\n\n\n\n
  • However politeness and etiquette are really about contract between pple – technology is changing the way we experience and or honor the contract but the contract is not written by the technology. \n\nThe way we honor that contract may be changed the way we violate may be changed but the tech itself is not an agent of social contract- we have to stop shifting responsibility.\n\n
  • How many of you are designers?\nHow many of you are business side?\nHow many of you are just fed up with the tools?\n
  • The world seems currently obsessed with the impact tech is having on our social fabric, relationships and happiness. Latest books all look at this from a slightly skeptical even insidious approach...\n\nWay too much binary discussion – distopian vs utopian and I think this all stems from lack of a new agreed upon system of normative behavior\n\n Rasmussen poll shoed that 75% of people think we are getting more rude\n 80% of email never goes answered - our expectation and communication style & mediums shifting \n Adam Gopnick - recently wrote an entire piece in the NYKR - How the Internet Gets Inside Us\n\nJaron Lanier - in Gopnik piece\nHe blames the Web’s tradition of “drive-by anonymity” for fostering vicious pack behavior on blogs, forums and social networks. He acknowledges the examples of generous collaboration, like Wikipedia, but argues that the mantras of “open culture” and “information wants to be free” have produced a destructive new social contract. “The basic idea of this contract,” he writes, “is that authors, journalists, musicians and artists are encouraged to treat the fruits of their intellects and imaginations as fragments to be given without pay to the hive mind. Reciprocity takes the form of self-promotion. Culture is to become precisely nothing but advertising.”\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n
  • sm brings out the superficial in us....efficiency.....intimate relationships are not about efficiency - andrew keen on tummelvision\n \n \n The messy web of links that transparency gives rise to reflects that intertwingularity. It shouldl ead us to wonder if one of the problems with objectivity and long-form argument is that they aren't a good match to the structure of the world. Perhaps intertwingly networks reflect the world more accurately than does an "objective" news report or a walk along long-form's narrow path. The world is too intertwingly, to use a word coined by network visionary Ted Nelson - via David Weinberger\n \n \n \n
  • Thomas Vanderwall - social comfort” - \n\n\n\n
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  • In addition to the standard discussion of SM and revolution ---\n\nTweets from Tahrir - yes my tweets public but are the publishable?\n\n The problem with knowing the role of social media in the recent MiddleEastern revolutions is that the events themselves are the result of a complex cluster of details that defies predictability and complete understanding. The same is true for human events overall, which is why we're still arguing about whether the Civil War was fought over the issue of slavery - David Weinberger\n \n \n
  • Davos Press Release - even the power players agree.....\n“The new contract has to move beyond the rulers and the ruled,” said Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva of Thailand. “We’re all partners now.” The state should not intervene in the private sector, he declared, but should focus instead on creating the conditions that would allow companies to create employment and make profits for their shareholders.\n“In the US, the social contract is adapting to a new set of circumstances that represent historic dramatic changes economically, technologically and in the rebalance between the West and the East,” said Ronald A. Williams, Chairman of Aetna, USA. The corporation has the obligation to operate with integrity, to create jobs and to operate in a sustainable way in the context of resources and risk.\n
  • Entertainment? Meltdown? Carcrash? Do we jump in?\n\n\n
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  • \nTechnology is as society does \n\nTime for us to look at the impacts and explore what we want the world to be\n\nWe have tendency to view technology as isolated from humans using it\n\nWe blame the technology \n\nFrom the 100K view civil society may look kinda insane -like some sort of techno tower of babel\n\nFifteen/Twenty years is a blip in the fabric of humanity - \n\nIn past two decades we have gone from strictly data driven networks to more relationship driven networks. \n\n24/7 uber-connectedness in about 5 years – our language and modes of behavior have not caught up with us – what is a friend in an online context?\n\nWe currently have emergent socio-normative behaviors that are implicit and often discordant and not agreed upon by all parties vs the embedded ethics evolved over the past 5000 or so years\n\nJust because we grew up with the internet does not mean that the internet is all grown up.\n\nWe need to assess where we came from to know where we are going \n\n\n
  • We have thousands of years of moral principles we ‘live’ by\n\nIn the past these rules were set by divine right and then philosophical dominion i.e.[smart guys in towers] now each new tool and individual and community forges a new set of principles on what is or is not valued by that community or tool or group\n\nIn all other places where we have gathered as a community we have had rules in place prior to the situation and an understanding of the agreed social contract\n\n\n\nAfter the creation of fire that first nite in the cave - someone had to negotiate - ok it’s not cool - we need to go to sleep put put the fire!\n
  • \nWhen letters traveled in the middle ages it was tradition according to Rabbi Chagitz to put a four letter acronym on letters that were private\n\n
  • Jane Austin - continous exchanging of letters among the elite - we think of them as long period of change but running back and forth and servants bump into each other about - talked about content of the letter - the metadata delivered by people\n\n some have access some don’t\n even tho it is new it is really not - access has changed our definition of access and who has it \n servants as keepers of the back channel\n\n\n
  • locomotive (adj.) \n1610s, "pertaining to movement," from Fr. locomotif (fem. locomotive), from L. loco "from a place" (abl. of locus "place;" see locus) + L.L. motivus "moving" (see motive). The noun meaning "railroad engine" is from 1829, short for locomotive engine (1814).\n\n\n\nRail compressed time & space - fundamentally changed and how far and who held them.\n\nStage coach - stealing the mail bag - potential for others to intervene etiquette of sealing the post office guaranteed privacy\n
  • Party lines - you knew people were listening and although there was a social contract of privacy -privacy was extended to those on the line because you trusted them as you knew who was listening --there was social accountability since you knew who the gossip was\n
  • Up until now most social web sites are created with a spirit of more more and openness. With each creator making his or her own decisions. The complexity and pervasiveness of this is changing the dynamics and forcing a new examination of what is and is not accepted. \nAlthough :Internet society” is a newly emerging civil society, concepts and considerations taken into account in earlier contexts can lead to valuable lessons. \nI started to think of what concepts do we already take for granted. \nMy perspective on these three concepts - probably heard of and how i believe the y pertain to internet culture and etiquette \n
  • From UN launch of the golden Rule Poster:\n Because the United Nations is a home for our highest human ideals, and because the world's religions have a duty to articulate and promote those ideals, we are honoured to present you with "The Golden Rule." In this poster, thirteen religious and spiritual traditions state a universal principle in elegant and distinctive forms.\n These Golden Rules are evidence of a Global Ethic that transcends nations, civilizations, and religions. Yet no other statements so clearly summarize the simple practices of kindness and sustainable human conduct. In recent years, gatherings of religious and spiritual leaders have confirmed that "this ancient precept is found and has persisted in many religious and ethical traditions of humankind for thousands of years. . . [and] should be the irrevocable, unconditional norm for all areas of life, for families and communities, for races, nations, and religions" (Toward a Global Ethic).\n The United Nations provides a unique forum where the subtleties of this universal principle can be translated into the realm of international affairs. We are inspired by key United Nations documents such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and its premise that those rights we wish for ourselves shall be granted to others as well. Equally challenging is the principle that no nation will find peace until it wants for others the same peace and security it seeks for itself.\n We believe that these Golden Rules, also known as the "law of reciprocity," must be obeyed by all nations, and that, in the interests of global security, no nations or leaders may exempt themselves. Whatever is hateful or injurious to ourselves, we must not do to others.\n Failure to adhere to these moral principles brings great hazards to all, ranging from unsustainable development practices to environmental crises and nuclear threats with their inherent potential for catastrophe. Nations must treat other nations as they wish to be treated.\n Together, these precepts remind us that our diversity can flourish within a greater and simpler unity - the human family, with its common origins, needs, and aspirations. The Golden Rules teach that no one - no nation, culture, or religion - is an island unto itself. Drawing on time-tested wisdom and experience, they presume our interdependence and declare our personal responsibility for the common good.\n
  • Jean-Jacques Rousseau departed from the idea that individuals are transforming from their natural state into members of the society. It is only with the emergence of personal property that social structures develop and a need for regulation can be recognized. Rousseau herewith followed the ideas of John Locke, who argued that inequalities start to exist with the emergence of personal properties which can then lead from disagreements to actual war. If this situation occurs, individuals join together in order to interrupt this process and protect their properties. \nAccording to Rousseau, a contract, called social contract, amongst all members of society must be concluded due to the fact that individuals by themselves are unable to originate new forces; therefore, they have no other choice than to unify. \nThe purpose of this social contract is the accumulation of forces into a community that can protect each individual. \nAlthough each member of the society stays as free as before and only obeys to himself, the individual merges completely and utterly with the collective. \nSimilarly, Immanuel Kant argues that individuals do not naturally live in communities and create law, they do it for rational reasons. In other words, individuals weigh the advantages of living as a society against its disadvantages and draw the conclusion that they profit more from the establishment of a community. \nEven though the social contract may never have been pronounced aloud, its validity is impliedly accepted and approved on the whole territory of a community as it constitutes everyone’s personal will. Each individual is transformed from a solitary human being into a part of a greater communitarian whole. The decision to form a community is made based on reason; because every person knows of the advantage a community gives to individuals, the merging into a society is not questioned.\nThe social contract itself does not give an authority that some individuals are governing others. The individuals responsible for the leadership of the community are appointed by the entire community only after the establishment of the social contract. However, it is the population that is the sovereign of the State; the government is established only to carry out the will of the sovereign and act as an arbitrator. \n\nCite: R H Weber and R Weber, "Social Contract for the Internet Community? Historical and Philosophical Theories as Basis for the Inclusion of Civil Society in Internet Governance?", (2009) 6:1 SCRIPTed 90,  \n
  • Multiple publics\n\nHabermas discussed the origination of publics in 18th century - open to all salons and perhaps the internet today - jeff jarvis and journalists today\n\nMichael Warner [introduce to him by Danah Boyd} - publics and counter publics\n\nToday we have with latest facebook comments issue - take away anonymity as the solution\nOne Identity is often a solution for the privileged not the marginalized\n\nThe solution is not presuming technology can police behavior\n\nDiamond’s - multiple persona’s and multiple publics \n\nNot as discreet or binary as simple solutions would like us to think\n\n\n\n\n\n\nJürgen Habermas (English pronunciation: /ˈjɜrɡən/ or /ˈjʊərɡən ˈhɑːbərmɑːs/,[1] German: [ˈjʏʁɡən ˈhaːbɐmaːs]; born June 18, 1929) is a German sociologist and philosopher in the tradition of critical theory and pragmatism. He is perhaps best known for his theory on the concepts of 'communicative rationality' and the 'public sphere'. His work focuses on the foundations of social theory and epistemology,\n\nIn The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere Jürgen Habermas developed the influential concept of the public sphere, which emerged in the 18th century in Europe as a space of critical discussion, open to all, where private people came together to form a public whose "public reason" would work as a check on state power.\n\n the analysis of advanced capitalistic societies and democracy, the rule of law in a critical social-evolutionary context, and contemporary politics—particularly German politics. Habermas's theoretical system is devoted to revealing the possibility of reason, emancipation, and rational-critical communication latent in modern institutions and in the human capacity to deliberate and pursue rational interests. Habermas is known for his work on the concept of modernity, particularly with respect to the discussions of "rationalization" originally set forth by Max Weber. While influenced by American pragmatism, action theory, and even poststructuralism, many of the central tenets of Habermas' thought remain broadly Marxist in nature.\n\nWarner\n
  • What are the new moral principles of the Web?\n\nWe are living in a world with ethics and normative behaviors being set individually on a case by case basis and rules from one world are being carried over into another. \n\nIn a frictionless, hyper connected and persistent society norms are often localized within small groups – and we have become accustomed to move easily between these two groups without necessarily acknowledging or recognizing the shifting norms\n\nEach relationship has different expectations\n\nWe have never had so much simultaneous communication with such density \n\nDATING/WORK Story -the “wrong chat window”\n\nTHough incredibly funny and mortifying demonstrates the subtle variances in style and content and expectations in different frictionless settings\n\n
  • Shifting behavior:\n Evolving - used to do blah blah blah [we had a model]\n metaphor from physical world breaking down\n Emerging - new ways - reuse of things\n Contested - we are not quite sure but we have strong contested POV - public, private, data, medical, access to internet - taking it away, privacy and data [social contract with companies]\n\n\nSample list of shifting behavior “arenas”:\n1.Definition Relationships – what is a friend\n2.Business me vs Professional me\n3.Intimacy without physicality – letter writing etc – I can know more about you than you told me – Victorian had control –the trope was the discovery of the hidden life – now can research you \n4.Implications of persistence\n5.Meeting online prior to face to face – meeting is deeper once met – that Aha\n6.Concepts of publics vs private spaces\na.Multiple publics – danah \ni.Informed\nii.Choice\niii.Consent\nb.Emergent publics\nc.Multiple public identities\n7.Insertion behavior – i.e. guilt by association has persistence on web – activity stream\na.Always been accountable for those with whom we consort, however we increasingly live in a world where over emphasis of connection in social network your centrality in my life can appear to be a strong tie and your bad behavior can impact me even tho it is an . my approval and distancing is not explicit \ni.Social Networks set up by young people\n8.Reciprocity – friending, commenting, sharing\na.Friending – reciprocal or not\n9.Circles of intimacy – just because I follow you does not mean I Have your attention – like jumping into the middle of someone else’s conversation\na.Intimacy vs synchronousity\n10.Disparties in /Assymatries\n11.Implicit vs Explicit connections\n12.Preferences - Communication mediums – how/when where and why to connect with me\n13.Time expectations\n14.Presence\na.When is it required to be 100% present vs not\nb.Presence for you might be different for me\n15. Exit – when does a conversation end\n16.Intrusion – \n17.Disciplining the individual or crowd – \ in a theatre\nb.Negative comments/trolls/anonymous posting\n18.Hierarchy of communication – i.e. Citibank when email started\n19.Tagging – other identity you i.e photos on FB etc\n\n\n\n
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  • “back in the day” it was an accepted norm to ask if I could post a photo of you online - now we post first ask later......\n
  • Best way to hear human heart - actually with ear to chest but not socially acceptable----\n
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  • When they first appeared the owner of the machine was rude for not answering phone - now we have come full circle and you are rude when you leave a message and force me to listen to it [vs SMS or calling back]\n\nWhat is rude? To some not leaving a VM is rude to others it is respectful\n\n\n
  • Danah Boyd has found that kids’ now steganography in FB on status posts as code with friends to avoid parental snooping\n
  • Activity streams and feeds now mean that guilt by association is very explicit and discreet and persistent - a friends your bad behavior is reflected on your home page. \n
  • Contested - Shutting off the internet, privacy and data, [social contract with companies, medical data.\n\n \n\n
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  • Single piece of human interaction\n Opening - Hello\n Presence- Availability Offline we have phatic communication online we have very discreet ways - signaling is different online\n Closing – Leave taking - Just walk away not polite\n\nWhat is present – example of using cell phone to augment lecture when older couple felt I was being rude\nIntimacy – Are you being ignored or are you just busy?\n
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  • \nWe are viewing technology as either utopian or dystopian\nWe have tendency to view technology as isolated from humans using it\nWe blame the technology\n\n
  • Microsoft patent:\nThe present invention includes methods and technologies for defining and administering device manners policy ("DMP"), propagating DMP, reception and recognition of, and compliance with DMP. Such policy may be used to communicate to various mobile and other devices the "manners" with which compliance is expected or required. Similar to some of the social manners honored among people, such as with "no smoking" or "employees only" zones, "no swimming" or "no flash photography" areas, and scenarios for "please wash your hands" or "no talking out loud", devices may recognize and comply with analogous "device manners" policy.\n\n\n
  • SXD needs to take into account an understanding of forging a new contract - social comfort {vanderwall]\n\n•Designing systems for flexibility\n•Designing systems that users control\n•Sentiment analysis\n\n\n\n\n
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  • Set our own new rules \n
  • Tummlers - Tummler is a yiddish word that means to catalyze others to action. It was traditionally the individual who was hired to get everyone to dance at a wedding or the comedian who hung out all week to get to know his audience and create a sense of community.\n\nI used this word today to describe both the human skill set and practice needed to succeed in a world that is no longer command and control but networked and connected. \n\nI am here to put a stake in the ground - one who are the technologists who say the users will change - the sociologists friends who stamp their feet and people are people - entrenched discourse\n\nNot just people but communities - technologists and the luddites need to get each of those cultures individual tummlers lead to cultural shofts and breaking down the boundaries\n\ntummeling is not just a person it’s a practice.\n\npeople and technology -their are activities thru technology \n\nWe need to be cognizant of the world we are building and live in the colorful middle\n \n \n \n an entertainer or master of ceremonies, especially one who encourages audience interaction (from Yiddish tumler, from tumlen 'make a racket'; cf. German (sich) tummeln 'go among people, cavort')\n
  • You’ve all seen this one before but now look at it in context of evolving, emerging and contested....\n\n\n\n \n
  • This new world requires new design thinking, more sophisticated tools and a renewed focus on human skills \nWe need an acknowledgment of the behavioral shifts and the emergent cultural & societal impacts \n\nThis is early days - the social web is an adolescent. As we move more and more from the data driven web to the social & participatory driven web - the softer social skills of the connector are in demand & needed. \n\nAsk yourself - If we no longer live in a command and control hierarchy...\n\n What kind of filters, frameworks and technology do we need to connect these dots to be truly useful?\n \n How do we incorporate design into framing emergent etiquette and the new social contract?\n \n What are the new skills succeeding in a hyper networked world?\n\n\n\n
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  • Forging a New Social Contract - SXSW 2011

    1. 1. Dear Miss Manners:the Social Web, WTF?Examining the emerging new socialcontract of our hyper-connectedworldSession Tags:#behuman@debsSXSW 2011Deb
    2. 2. Before we begin‣ I am not expert on political or social theory‣ This is not a binary conversation - it’s complicated‣ This talk is not about right and wrong‣ This is not an exhaustive dialogue – I will leave things out‣ This is a beginning not an end‣ I have a bias as a practical utopian..;). @debs #behuman
    3. 3. For discussion ‣ We are here to frame the issue and make it transparent ‣ Discuss how the web is changing our perceptions of moral/ethical behavior and etiquette appropriateness ‣ As the makers of this world we need to own the issues and address them ‣ Do we even need an agreed upon new set of behavior or just let it sort itself out?@debs #behuman
    4. 4. Why are you here? What drew u to this topic?
    5. 5. “How the Internet gets inside us” - Gopnik, New Yorker Just a few examples @debs #behuman
    6. 6. private persistence personal identity truth “friend” authentic currency rude trust presence reciprocity respect honesty anonymity value free ownership intimacy accountability public urgency secret comfort appropriate self share celebrity objectivity influence constancy commerceJust a few sample words @debs #behuman
    7. 7. rules - Leads to vulnerability, discomfort and fragiletrust @debs #behuman
    8. 8. Some recent lightening not too mention what you deal with every day storms @debs #behuman
    9. 9. Political cartoon by Randy Bish in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. What is secret? What is truth? What WikiLeaks needs to be transparent? @debs #behuman
    10. 10. Mid-East Revolution Do we have new responsibility here? @debs #behuman
    11. 11. Governments and businesses should start revisingtheir social contracts with their stakeholders in thelight of the new realities of the post-crisis world. -World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, 2011 Government & Commerce Davos @debs #behuman
    12. 12. Charlie Sheen Rude? Crazy? Entertaining? @debs #behuman
    13. 13. Can you think of other examples? @debs #behuman
    14. 14. Context @debs #behuman
    15. 15. new technology brings new tensions and a reshaping ofsocial frameworks @debs #behuman
    16. 16. Ancient timesRabbi Chaglitz[disclosure: this is an image of adifferent Rabbi] @debs #behuman
    17. 17. Jane Austin - servants as keepers of the backchannel @debs #behuman
    18. 18. original network - the locomotive @debs #behuman
    19. 19. Party Lines @debs #behuman
    20. 20. Concepts @debs #behuman
    21. 21. Golden Rule “Law of reciprocity” @debs #behuman
    22. 22. The Social Contract @debs #behuman
    23. 23. “The” Public Sphere evolved to multiple publics @debs #behuman
    24. 24. So what exactly is going on today? @debs #behuman
    25. 25. 3 Types of of Shifting @debs #behuman
    26. 26. anandham Evolving @debs #behuman
    27. 27. Digital photos photo sharing etiquette evolves @debs #behuman
    28. 28. @debs #behuman
    29. 29. Emerging @debs #behuman
    30. 30. Machine @debs #behuman
    31. 31. Social steganography hiding in plain site on facebook @debs #behuman
    32. 32. Your bad behavior now reflectedMucking up my stream explicitly and persistently in my feed @debs #behuman
    33. 33. @debs #behuman
    34. 34. Shutting off the internet we view this as a right @debs #behuman
    35. 35. Personal Data @debs #behuman
    36. 36. Lets examine a single piece of human interaction @debs #behuman
    37. 37. So, now what? @debs #behuman
    38. 38. Approaches @debs #behuman
    39. 39. @debs #behuman
    40. 40. http://www.( Can mitigate and set tone @debs #behuman
    41. 41. Policy Creative Commons @debs #behuman
    42. 42. Skills We will negotiate new etiquette together - it’s up to you @debs #behuman
    43. 43. Tummeling as apracticeOne, such as a social director orentertainer, who encourages guestor audience participation. 2. Onewho incites others to action.ETYMOLOGY: Yiddish tummler,from tumlen, to make a racket.Learn more at
    44. 44.’ve all seen this video before. Now look at it in context ofevolving, emerging and contested behaviors.
    45. 45. This new world requires the combination of newdesign thinking, sophisticated tech tools and arenewed focus on human skills
    46. 46. ThanksDeb, TummelVisionwww.tummerlvision.tvSenior Fellow, Altimeter @debs #behuman
    47. 47. The end