In trust we trust: keeping it human…

Image: Don't feed the humans (Brighton graffitti)
Image: Don't feed the humans (Brighton graffitti)

Took some time to read some more of What Would Google Do? today and was stopped in my tracks by some of Jeff Jarvis’s thoughts on trust, a topic which has been much on my mind in recent weeks.

Trust is more of a two-way exchange than most people – especially those in power – realise. Leaders in government, news media, corporations, and universities think they and their institutions can own trust when, of course, trust is given to them. Trust is earned with difficulty and lost with ease. When those instituions treat consituents like masses of fools, children, miscreants, or prisoners – when they simply don’t listen – it’s unlikely they will engende warm feelings of mutual respect. Trust is an act of opening up; it’s a mutual relationship of transparency and sharing. The more ways you will build trust, which is your brand.

Trust makes up much of that thing we call reputation. And when hard times come, whether you’re a brand or an individual inside or outside an organisation, it is time to test your trust.

What have you earned? What have you won and stored away for when you need to make that ask, find that opportunity, seal that deal. You never really know how much you have or where it lies – it’s outside of your awareness and your control, out there in your networks, your tribe.

It also strikes me, yet again, that the rules, the emerging successful patterns of behaviour online, are very much the same for individuals as for brands.

It’s those parallels, the elevation, the restoration, of human social rules to what makes for successful politics, commerce, culture, that make me feel it’s OK to talk about “the social web” as being more than just about social computing tools.

I’m going to write about this a lot more soon, in a book. It’s not going to be going down the “personal branding” route – helpful as that is to some people. I’ll be avoiding the b-word applied to individuals, because for me brand carries too many connotations of control and design, and that’s even less helpful and appropriate for individuals that is for big corporate brands themselves.

Anyway, more later on that…

Typograhic history of the City of London

I’m posting a lot of videos recently. Maybe I should be setting up a Tumblr blog for this sort of thing. Maybe not.

Anyway, this is a gem: combining three of my interests: typography, London and history, it’s a short film by Michael Bokkowski at Linefeed:

A Typographic Survey of the City of London from Michael Bojkowski on Vimeo.

Definitely worth 15 minutes…

Via Peter Parkes

SXSW and Pepsico

OK, so I really wish I was at the uber-geek gathering SXSW. Ho hum. Packing up the house instead – I will get over it.

Was particularly interested to see that the whole thing was being sponsored by Pepsico.

i’d like to think that while the company justified its spend largely in traditional terms (opnion formers, blah blah, drink brands like Mountain Dew sposnoring certain elements of the event) that this is most likely about social web literacy. The sponsorship gets the company’s people in the thick of it, playing with the platforms. I was espacially taken with this good looking aggregator that catgorises what SXSW Tweetists are up to (Sunday morning UK time, they’re partying on Saturday night still).

Image: Pepsico's SXSW Twitter aggregator
Image: Pepsico's SXSW Twitter aggregator

Pepsico’s one of the growing number of big brands that over the last year has made senior appointments to lead its work around the social web and engagement.

It looks like a company that’s learning, spreading web literacy within.