The power of intent

Yesterday I linked to this story of a company and the 45 day process it went through to come up with what it saw as a killer tweet. This is why I talk of "the industrialisation of social media", it is also why I called my book Organizations Don't Tweet, People Do! Don't they get that this is a conversational medium at its best and a channel for yet more disingenuous noise at its worst? It doesn't have to be this way.

In most organisations there will be people trying to "go viral" by hook or by crook, or others who see their job as simply filling the content management system with stuff, whether people read it or not. And yet in my work I get to meet people in challenging jobs, representing complex organisations, genuinely reaching out through social tools to foster real connections.

Those of us on the receiving end can tell the difference. We know when we are being gamed and when there is a genuine desire to connect and share. Even through the 140 characters of a tweet we can discern intent.

Why is real people, having real conversations about real stuff that matters so hard?