Organizing and virtual tribalism

September 10, 2008

In a recent post Shel Israel said, “The relevance of social media is that it allows us to interact in the world increasingly more like we behave in our own physical neighborhoods.” In my opinion this is a critical concept for folks looking for new ways to organize younger employees. From what I see working at a major university, younger people who have grown up with portable devices like cell phones enabled for texting use these devices to stay constantly virtually connected to their social group, their tribe.

The virtually defined social group should be approached in the same way labor organizers from the last century used community centers, social clubs and churches to organize last century’s workers. The key is to think of social media as a place to be, rather than as a thing to use.