Latest Subject of “Social Tugs”

I came across a bunch of pieces this morning that led to a chain of thoughts about events and tendencies that don’t really have much do with each other but I am still going to try to connect the major ideas to hopefully make a meta point.

From USV’s Bethany Crystal’s Everything’s doing it : A short treaters on social “tugs” post :

Last year, I had one close friend with children. This year, the number of pregnant friends in my life is close to hitting double-digits. This puts a rather significant percentage of people I see regularly in a new zone or phase that I am not yet a part of.

It’s not quite peer pressure, but it does introduce a “social tug” of sorts. When lots of people that you are close with suddenly decide to do a thing, it’s way easier to attribute that as validation that you should, too. And no matter what that thing is, it’s hard to completely silence that teensie voice inside your head that’s saying things like this:

If everybody is doing it, shouldn’t you be, too? If you don’t do it now, won’t you miss out? Don’t you want to be a part of the group? Do you want to fall behind?

I am sure you agree with the sentiment Crystal is trying to describe.

In the light of a big acquisition, everyone in my twitter feed is talking about Utah. If you are one of the lucky ones to not know what I am talking about, check out Semil Shah’s post where he comments on the event and curates a bunch of press articles and hot takes from the tech community. I always enjoy Shah’s posts on unpacking acquisitions.

One of my favorite things to do with twitter search is to look up the hot new thing everyone is suddenly raving about with the “people you follow” filter on. It is always amusing to see how people who never talked about it literally a few hours or days before the inflection event that inspired all the hot takes and conversations around the hot new thing. The latest such thing is Utah’s tech scene.

I am not saying that the substance of a lot of these conversations isn’t worth paying attention to. I am merely fascinated by how everyone starts talking about the same thing literally overnight. There are, of course, some early believers, proponents and critics who were talking about it for a while. It is still very predictable how everyone starts voicing a strong opinion or predication on what the precipitating event means for them.

Tweeting around the latest fashionable thing in the tech land is tech’s idiosyncratic equivalent of the wider trend of using hashtags to cut through the noise and be heard. To be fair to them, it is twitter after all. Real time instant communication. Or, as I like to think of it, an access to everyone else’s brains.

I am, of course, guilty of it myself. I fell prey to “social tugs”.

I wrote about Utah after all.