The darling days of digital

Imagine if you were to set a time lapse camera over your street from when you were born until now.

You know the time lapse? It’s the mode on your camera that films one location continuously over a lengthy period of time, and when you play it back it is sped up like a movie on fast forward. The slight changes that may go unnoticed in the moment, suddenly become apparent over time. It is reality sped up.

That was certainly the case in my community growing up. I grew up in a suburb called Eastwood in Sydney, Australia.

With a single story brick house on a large block with a hills hoist washing line peeping over the back fence, it was a fairly standard Sydney suburb. We used to know all our neighbours. We were always out on the sidewalk playing with the kids on the street… riding bikes, playing hopscotch on the path,

We went to a local primary school and used to walk to school with my older brother and sister, or just on my own. We used to stop off to get lollies at the convenience store on the way.

Yet around me the community was changing.

The demographics of the population began to change. Eastwood became a popular spot for Korean families. And slowly over time the shops would turn over into new Korean enterprises; and with it a thriving and friendly new community.

The style and wealth changed in the suburb. The houses in my street went from single story traditional brick homes to two or three storey modern homes. And cars would transition from boxy sedans to sleek four-wheel-drives.

The community interaction changed. No longer could you see kids playing on the sidewalk away from mother’s watchful eye where every neighbour knew each other. But over time the conversations stopped as cars pull straight into garage entrances. In today’s cocoon world, we confine to our oversized TVs and Mac havens to recover from our day.

The fellow commuter on the train no longer pulled out the newspaper or magazine or book, one by one they had mostly all been replaced by a rectangle screen with white earbuds trailing into the pocket.

Welcome to the Age of Online Influence.

As one of the key driving forces of change, technology has blazed a new way of living…

From the first glimpse of the television.

The first steps of the man on the moon.

The first telephone. The first mobile phone. The first computer.

And of course the world wide web… the 24 hour news cycle, the unstoppable access to information… and boom the world suddenly became much smaller.

We’ve urbanised, digitised, and customised our lives. The way we live, work and play has rapidly changed from how it looked and behaved at the beginning of the 20th century until today.

As Homo Deus author elegantly puts it:

“A global audience connected by a digital message just like a whisper… what once we only thought possible by the God’s.”


Digital has become a lifestyle, not a choice

When mobile phones became a computer in our pocket, it transcended the need for set times for certain functions. Like reading a newspaper when we held the physical paper, checking emails when we sat at our computer, having a meeting when we saw people. Now we have access at any time in any place for news, information, connection with clients, colleagues or friends. The world is quite literally at our fingertips.

And of course, the flip side is that the world has access to us at any time. Hence, the emergent discussion arising around how to set boundaries with our phone and the always-on lifestyle (more on that later).

With the aid of technology, this ability to reach a large number of people has become threaded to the patterns and rhythms of our lives. With bots to reply to our messages any time, any place. Live stories to immediately broadcast worldwide, a click to seamlessly like and share with friends and colleagues from Canberra to China to Colorado, and the tune-in and chime-in to the global conversation of news, share prices, celebrity gossip, groundbreaking research, the sharing of ideas.

The ability to create your broadcast channel to the world is here, all at the swipe of a finger or push of a button – anywhere that wi-fi or data will allow you.

And guess what, you can expect your seamless, global communication and connection to become both easier and more amplified through the advancement of Artificial Intelligence, 5G mobile capability, experimentation with Augmented Reality and our adoption to this new technology.

So if the world is listening, what do you have to have to say?

Are you ready to Stand Out?

About Kirryn Zerna

I’m on a quest to help ideas, leaders and brands stand out (without selling out) in this age of online influence. I’m a conference speaker, a masterclass presenter and creator of the Stand Out Effect: a modern-day quest to uncover what makes brands stand out without selling out. What’s unique about me is that I understand the nuance of business from a large corporation to a small business and can translate the challenges and opportunities of the power of social media in each context. I draw on deep experience of working within corporate and public sector environments, and I also have had the privilege of working with over 1,300 small businesses and entrepreneurs through state and federal funded programs in the last year.

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