Charlotte Rose reports on IDENTITY day at the Digital Shoreditch festival.
Digital Shoreditch is a new festival that celebrates outstanding creativity and with over 50 events held over a 5-day period I sadly couldn’t get to them all!
But even attending just one day I left feeling more informed about the different perspectives creative agencies, organisations and brands (along with key individuals) have on the ever-evolving digital world we live and work in.
It was particularly interesting to hear alternatives on how to engage consumers – from charitable and sporting organisations, for example. And as well as the art, it was fascinating to discover more about the science and psychology that drives digital communication too.
The first speaker to really capture my attention was David Erasmus, CEO and Founder of GIVEY.
David spoke about using social media for social good and not only did he tell us about the opportunities it can offer, he showed how social can provide an effective alternative to current methods of charitable donation.
Perhaps the most profound point he made was how we’re able to contribute to things “bigger than ourselves.” And whilst we spend a lot of time and effort detailing our professional and social profiles through LinkedIn and Facebook, there is no social ‘timeline’ that documents our good deeds.
David’s aspiration is to develop a platform that will enable millions of people to make millions of small actions, and by following, sharing and, ultimately, encouraging each other in these actions we can make millions of positive changes to the world. An amazing concept and like all great ideas, brilliantly simple!
The second speaker who really inspired me was Holly Clarke, Group Head of UK Operations Team at UNRULY. Holly’s theme for discussion was, ‘I share, therefore I am’.
She spoke about children’s online personas, their timeline recorded histories and how the importance they place on their perceived image from such an early, impressionable age could later trigger social anxieties.
Holly commented on how individuals create specific personas for specific platforms, using social media to express themselves and self-validate through likes. For social grooming and nurturing relationships kids join groups and follow trends that carve a specific identity. And for E-world domination, (trend setting), they build up a following via twitter, which involves the perpetual search for new content and reactive sharing that is now second nature.
The insightful message, in short, was; children should concentrate on their off-line identity and socialisation skills and ‘digital literacy’ must be implemented from a young age. Children must be taught about privacy, safety and ultimately be actively encouraged to power down, switch off the computer and enjoy life offline, in the real world.
All in all, a fantastic festival and one I’d highly recommend. Can’t wait for next year!
Find out more about Digital Shoreditch.