I keep thinking about probably my most uncomfortable experience on stage taking about social media which happened in Kosovo.
There I was, stood in front of about four hundred young, upwardly mobile, marketing professionals, all expecting me to tell them how to write a killer tweet or how to make an instantly viral YouTube video. They were the sort of people who I am sure are now using “influencers” to “drive” business in the indignation engines, sorry, “social media platforms”, that now dominate the web.
And there was me, standing on the stage, twaddling on idealistically about the internet’s potential to make the world a better place. I will never forget the blank looks on their faces!
Sadly I was only in and out for the conference but it was fascinating to see a place with such a sad and recent history. NATO were everywhere, there were shell marks on the walls in the main streets, and people were just beginning to rebuild their lives. They told me that the mafia were largely running the place because they were the only ones with organisational skills in their post communist world.
I probably shouldn’t be so judgmental about the audience and I hope they were successful in hauling their country out of the dark hole they had been stuck in.