I’m tired. It’s 11pm and it’s time I was in my ‘jammies and cleaning toothies. But I was thinking about this.
Echo Chamber is used pejoratively in the blogosphere:
The term media echo chamber can refer to any situation in which information, ideas or beliefs are amplified or reinforced by transmission inside an “enclosed” space. Observers of journalism in the mass media describe an echo chamber effect in media discourse. One purveyor of information will make a claim, which many like-minded people then repeat, overhear, and repeat again (often in an exaggerated or otherwise distorted form) until most people assume that some extreme variation of the story is true.
The echo chamber can come into effect in the Evening News – all the TV stations covering the same story. It’s considered one of the major failings of the TechMeme style news aggregation.
In particular it’s used to refer to a story that is picked up by the Blog Elite -the Bloggerati etc. Robert Scoble, and all those lads on Twitter chucking links back and forth on a subject, making it important in their eyes and therefore the eyes of their followers, and eventually, in the eyes of traditional media. Storm in a teacup stuff – beacon was one example.
But the Echo Chamber is how we build contextual meaning and importance.
First, communities must have leaders, communities function best when different types of leaders arise from various sources. Some leaders are heavy duty posters (5 blogs posts or more per day). Others have a lot of readers or friends or followers – 5000 or 20,000 friends – some post rarely and stand apart from the mass yet are still in leadership positions due to being elders (time online) or deep knowledge or some other agenda. Brand Evangelists, Customer Advocates, Big Mouths, call them what you will…
Then, the echo chamber starts to discuss values – it’s social Values that align community Purpose. What the echo chamber sees as important leads newer members and fans into a discussion. Every community has a membership cycle, a leadership tribe, and an echo chamber. if there is no common discussion point or leadership group, you have a dying community.
Be grateful for the echo chamber – it means you can take the temperature of that group (watch Twitter for the current topics of interest in the blogosphere) and choose a point of view on a subject to enter the discussion. Without it, you might have to choose a topic and arouse interest -and that is harder than you would think!