In this session, we will discuss the evolving social trends and the effects they have on our decision-making process when it comes to content selection. Who should we trust when it comes to recommendations? Who are the most reliable "social" connections we can turn to for relevant opinions? Perhaps the popular concept of having everything "social" is not the answer for every aspect of our lives – does the future of everything truly lie in "social"?
Take foursquare for example, the pioneer of location based "check-in's", who recently declared a (surprising?) shift in focus from being used as a social network to being recognized as a recommendations engine. Or take Delicious, a company that had high hopes of reinventing the discovery arena by enabling consumers to take charge of content classification and tagging. What can they teach us on the matter of taking tips from the masses? Can they really identify the right people to recommend a good restaurant or an interesting article to read?
These questions also arise when dealing with the concept of "Social TV." When a free evening finally comes around, and we want to watch something enjoyable on TV, whose recommendation should we rely on? Will we turn to a childhood friend we recently reconnected with on Facebook? How about a coworker sharing his opinions on twitter? "Social" has to be put into proportion in order to be effective when supporting day-to-day decisions. Because at the end of the day, we just want to watch something we will actually enjoy, that will be suitable for our personal taste.
As a solution, Jinni introduces the concept of "neighbors" – social connections that are based on shared tastes in entertainment, rather than virtual or real-life proximity. These are the people whose opinion we can value, while all the others, eventually, become just noise.
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