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#Usguys is a Twitter Tribe that has been around for over a year. It started out as a Social Media garage where the main emphasis was conversation around marketing, social media topics, seo, new tools, and outrageous comments from Dan Perez. To learn more about what is #Usguys surf here. Many would argue that the Tribe as it is constituted today has many excellent strengths and I will let them argue that point in the comments. In this post I want to lament some of the things lost along the way.
1. Losing the #AMCommute.
I miss chatting with @SeanMcGinnis and @PeterfromOttawa during the #AMCommute. There was something special about knowing Sean’s conductor was named “JJ” and hearing thoughts from Peter while he transited around Ottawa. There are many other great conversations lost as well from those early days. More on this later. If you know what I’m talking about leave a comment…
2. The Fab who?
It’s funny, as I was contemplating this post @TomMoradpour made a rare visit to the hashtag he helped establish. More recently the @RealChaseAdams has been in/out of the tag. But, let me let you in on a secret. They never meant to create a Tribe. There was no thought given to the “institution” of usguys being or meaning anything. It was 5 guys talking about the Gap Logo fiasco and people were drawn to the conversation. You, me, “we” actually do them a dis-service by thinking they “created/founded” usguys as we know it today or even 11 months ago. Disagree? Make your point known below.
3. What Web site?
At one point in time there were a few out of Twitter points of reference to #usguys. Chase Adams started a Posterous blog and had aspirations of making something more permanent. Several people jumped in to help and TheUsGuys.com had a brief hey-day say February / March of 2011. Bet you that the most recent additions to the hashtag have no idea a site exists. Plans for an even better, more community driven site seemingly died in the Lab. Maybe #usguys doesn’t need a website anyway, what do you think?
4. The Flight to the suburbs.
As a Twitter tree house or the Bar “Cheers” on Twitter it is kinda cool that many hashtag champions will stop in for a drink or two (#Beer, #Wine, #Coffee, #Chai). Maybe this was only ever going to be the ‘role’ of the hashtag. But, still, it’s kind of sad to see some of the early gang move on and establish highly successful Twitter chats out in the Burbs… We still have #Usguyschat on Mondays at 3pm, but it is not secret that I’ve questioned if @Ken_Rosen and @SMSJoe should take that out as well. For context, there were once plans to have “channels” on the hashtag so that you could tune into WordPress or SEO or Coffee or Business or Marketing, you get the idea… What do you think? Sad or just the way it should be?
5. Facebook or LinkedIn?
@RicDragon remarked on Saturday 12/11/11 RT @RicDragon: hadn’t looked specifically at #usguys stream for a bit; seems more of the convo has moved to the other SoMe platforms! Actually, it has not just moved but fragmented. There are at least 3 Facebook groups, several versions of circles in GooglePlus, a Google Huddle, a defunct for now #Skype chat, and a couple of different iterations of LinkedIn groups. Add the scattering of former usguys pundits like @samfiorella @jolewitz @SeanMcGinnis to whole other areas of interest on and off twitter and it seems to me that we as a community have lost something. Your thoughts?
6. School yard fights.
Along the way we’ve had a few different school yard fights. I’ve always found these to be sad when they could not be repaired. A few good people have simply walked away from the group because they were in it at the wrong time. People are people and the occasional spat or misunderstanding will happen. I think we need to quickly move it off of 140 to something a little more robust like a Skype call or video. Anyway, a few people I really enjoyed moved on because of some of these spats. Makes me sad, how about you?
7. What? Did you really think it would be 12 sad things?
Well, there go Six sad things about the #usguys Tribe. No doubt you can add your own. Like why the name Us Guys (I agree with @Nakisnakis’s POV). However, I have a theory about the eventual fate or course of the Tribe which I’ll try to sum up in point number 12… Please, agree or disagree in the comments.
Starting with the Inaugural #UsGuys East Coast MeetUp on January 23rd, 2001 in Philadelphia, there have been many such meetings on both coasts and in the middle. If you have not experienced the joy of a Tweetup yet check out this video “One Tribe” by Ty Sullivan to get a feel for one.
9. IRL Relationships!
Twitter is an amazing way to find new relationships. It’s a little backwards. You get to know people from a different angle. You may not know what the names of their kids are or if they go to church, but you get an excellent feel for who they are as a person. #UsGuys has been the source of many amazing relationships for me. I’m working with people I love because of Twitter and #UsGuys. For those who do not yet get Twitter? #UsGuys is a great place to start. I strongly encourage you to meet people “IRL” or face-to-face whenever you get the chance.
Where else on Twitter can you go and ask almost any question and get it answered? Yes, if you know a certain question is best tweeted to #ToolChat or #BlogChat you might get engagement back. That depends on many factors though… #UsGuys is a great example of the power of weak links making the world smaller. I would almost bet the degrees of connection starting with #usguys would be 3. Yes, you are 3 degrees away from anyone or anything in the world. Try it, let’s play!
Stick around #Usguys for a bit and you’ll see that people care. Get to know them some and your cause could become their cause. @MargieClayman recently discussed this during #Tweetdiner (now found on Thursday nights at 9pm ET). We also helped @997Dave with his annual #CampbellRiver #ReliefTruck, information about the Campbellriver foodbank. I’m thinking there is some value here…anyone agree?
Just this past Sunday morning @Milaspage reintroduced me to the word Timshel. Her favorite quote of all time is from East of Eden and involves the concept of Free Will and man’s ability to choose. For more information you can read this excerpt from Oprah’s bookclub. For me, when I look at and legitimately lament certain things lost from Usguys and the diaspora of certain peoples and ideas; I also think about how collectively we control our future.
Those of us who are proud of being from the Tribe also have a charge, to choose. To choose how we will evolve. To choose how we will conduct ourselves. To choose to continue to welcome new people by ringing the tribal bell. To choose to be a resource for any who ask. To choose to have fun (including riling up @DanPerezFilms or @PaulBiedermann). To choose to care, and be friends.
What do you think? What do you miss? Who do you miss? What do you think of the current state of things? More importantly, what do you choose to do/be? Please tell us…
Photo Credit Creative Commons of Linus Art from FlickrTweet