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6degrees(Read time = 2-3 minutes) One of the surest signs of mainstream acceptance is when cutting edge trends bleed into traditional media coverage, become fodder for SNL and other parody spoofs, and (gasp!) find themselves the subject of academic scholarship and book publishing “for the rest of us…”  .  Ah… Twitter and Facebook, we knew you when…

When I stumbled across Nick Douglas’ just published, way to funny collection of “Twitter Wit: Brilliance in 140 Characters of Less”, it got me thinking just what other signposts are out there indicating wider acceptance of social networking/social network marketing?  Douglas’ book is an edited and authorized collection of the funniest tweets of all time w/forward by Biz Stone, co-founder of Twitter.  Sure, campaign 2008 thrust Twitter on to the public stage, but what else?

A Smattering of Social Media Maturity Proof Points

Reports of Facebook “…getting more gray…” as the 35-54 crowd increases their participation by over 60% in the last year.  A Forrester research report must be purchased, but here’s several links that digest the topic and results for free:

Facebook:  The Road Ahead: a TechCrunch report from the Web2.0 conference (4/09) on CPM rates, revenue experiments and developer alternatives.

Volunteer mass computing: Kudos to Intel for this free app and launch of a public beta project available to all Facebook users.  “Progress Thru Processors” runs as a background process on your computer, automatically directing idle processing power to the researchers’ computational efforts (AIDS, Global Warming, African Malaria).  When the user’s computer needs the performance, the app shifts into idle.  Reminds me of Berkeley’s SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) project.  These “grid” distributed computing projects have grown in recent years to include (among others): DIMES  (internet mapping project), GIMPS   (large prime number search), more AIDS Research, out to the more light-hearted Einstein neutron star-search, and BURP  (big, ugly rendering project for collaborative 3D graphics animation.)

Kevin Bacon redux… 6 degrees of separation has been reduced to 3, so contends a July 09 Trendsspotting.com write-up which chronicles Facebook and virtual friendships, building on social psychologist Stanley Milgram’s work and the Microsoft 2006 instant messaging study that popularized “6 degrees” into a social icon.

 Academics join the fray:  peer-reviewed articles and scientific publication is becoming more the norm as academics are starting to weigh-in with headier tomes.  Here’s just a few I found of more than passing interest:

What have you noticed as your clients or agencies engage in social media discussion?  Any insights to share?

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