Beyond The Browser
One of the most inspiring developments to come out of web2.0 has, for me at least, been the increased integration with the real-world and the opportunities it introduces for extending ideas beyond the browser. Using little more than a few social media sites, blogs and video/photo sharing services, groups like Improv Everywhere have grown from a small underground art movement to global phenomena in only a few years. Similarly MySpace regularly produces a superior class to of pop star than Pop Idol does – OK Pop Idol is an easy target but it’s the difference between the practically unlimited choice of the internet versus the edited/moderated/branded “perception-of-choice” of broadcast media that interests me here; providing the tools for people to make their own stuff.
When you give people tools, they tend to use them, even if they make something you weren’t originally expecting. One of the most recent example of this are the groups of young revellers who have taken to “dipping”. Dipping involves using Google maps’ satellite imagery to locate local homes with swimming pools then organising a party and heading on over for an impromptu gate-crashing.
Imagine the irony if one of the homes that falls prey to the pool-crashers belongs to a brand manager or marketeer, coming home after a day of desperately trying to engage the youth market in their brand, only to find a garden strewn with beer cans and their target market frantically cycling away from the scene.