Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Hub culture: Everything Everywhere

Dejour Magazine has a fascinating interview with Hub Culture founder, Stan Stalnaker. Author of the forward thinking 2002 book Hub Culture: The Next Wave of Urban Consumers, Stalnaker shares his insights on where the hot spots of cultural innovation are happening now.

Stan on the connected world:

In my view the ‘butterfly effect’ is a repercussion of this shift towards a revealed collective identity, where we finally realize (really realize, feel) that the tree falling in the Amazon affects our beef in New York, that the bottom of the pyramid bears the weight of the top, and that our actions, no matter how small, contribute to a combined common reality. As the ‘top of the pyramid’ in recent years has realized that they are part of a common hub, I think soon the rest of the planet will see that too. This means that farmers in Africa and factory workers in Vietnam and taxi drivers in Shanghai will soon find solidarity with each other, probably driven by low cost mobile technology, with nodal connections already at 3 billion and counting. This will change our view of the world and force us to address some quite awkward issues. Can Paris Hilton really skank the bling when half of Africa can watch her in real time? Is flaunting excess still acceptable when you’re finally face to face with someone who has nothing? It will have to shift.

As transparency drives efficiency, there will be no other place to live than this global village, and it means we’ll all be competing on more open playing fields. Right now its good, but in the long run, its a race to the bottom unless we find ways to build value at all levels. I think that will be addressed through collective systems that pay out on the micro-level, and Hub Culture people will have to prepare for the day when not just blue and white, but green and black collars are all outsourced to the global market. At that point, the size of our networks and the value of our reputations will be immensely important.

Read the full article here

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