I'm curious to know how people view the differences between "utility" vs. "content" in social media.
Most major web and wireless success stories are rooted in utility, not content-- Facebook (social networking), Twitter (microblogging), Google (Search), YouTube (video sharing), Flickr (media sharing), Eventful (event planning), Match (date facilitation), etc. That said, there is always a dance between "broad" and "niche" in media and commerce. Walmart sells shoes and computers but Nike Town and Apple Store do pretty well. ABC, NBC and CBS are broadcasters, but nichecasters Food Network, SyFy and Cartoon Network are killin' it.
So what happens as "utility" gets subsumed by "affinity"? That is, there is "genetic engineering" happening right now around cross-pollinating editorial cultural (Hollywood, Publishing, etc) with utility culture (Silicon Valley, Silicon Alley, Silicon Slopes, etc). Can Facebook be all things to all passion/affinity groups? Or is there an opportunity to provision integrated social marketing and messaging (ISM) apps that merge editorial POV with utility focused on a single affinity group (golfers, foodies, church-goers, brides-to-be, moms, etc)?
To start the discussion, I've included "Six Slides on Social Nicheworking" from the original blog post at http://jimbanister.com/?p=324