I’ve heard a couple of people talking about the power of Pull, and pull technologies. In one context it was Will Richardson talking about pull, another was through the Twitter feed for NMC 2010. I think all this talk about pull is forgetting that people also have to push for others to pull. So as we end up pulling more, people might push less. With less information being pushed out, popularity becomes a motivator to push – and as we know, popular does not always mean good (sure it’s good sometimes, and certainly entertaining, but not always both).
There will have to be more research into this push-pull dynamic because this flips some of the existing media theory on it’s head. To pull from McLuhan – is the web a “hot” or “cold” media? Using McLuhan’s criteria, it’s both hot and cold. Hot in the sense that it’s engaging the visual sense almost entirely. Hot in that it’s engaging and allows for communication. Cold in that it’s nonlinear. Cold in that it’s a detached medium. Or do we have to segment the web further? Do we have to look at video posting as different than blogging, tweeting or other web 2.0 activities? I think that might be the case. Certainly, different tasks lead to different goals. Posting a video on YouTube engages people differently than posting a video on Vimeo – which is mostly driven by two things. The first is the aesthetics of the video’s surrounding environment (the context of the video). The second is the immediacy of related videos change the context as well. If we derive meaning from the videos from the “related links” we are relying on the algorithm of the related links – through Google in the case of YouTube (I’m not sure if Vimeo has a hand-rolled relational script, or if it uses Google’s algorithm as well) – to make sense of the video in addition to the video itself.