The Little Prince sheds light on social networks
From solitude in the middle of the desert, in his meeting with Little Prince, Antoine de Saint Exupéry took us on his journey, when a plane crashed in the middle of the Sahara. This discovery of new beings happens to all of us when we are immersed in the midst of social networks and discover these unknown lands.
Re-reading Antoine de Saint Exupéry’s the Little Prince should be a prerequisite to entering the universe of social networks. Re-reading it at regular intervals will help clarify this environment to many users, though virtual, it represents a form of our society that is very close to real life. Since the time of Antoine de Saint Exupéry, human relations have changed very little.
In these areas, where the digital world provides us with a place to stay, the principles have remained the same and the initial desert in the world of social networking is ultimately, so familiar and close to us.
As when he met the fox, the goal of social networks is primarily to connect and tame each other. In this universe, loneliness is the worst of situations. Like the Little Prince, users are in search of sociability and they are looking to reclaim this dialogue:
" No”, said the little prince. I'm looking for friends. “What does that mean---tame ?”
“ It's an act too often neglected”, said the fox. “It means to establish ties.”
“To establish ties?”
“Just that”, said the fox. “To me, you're still nothing more than a little boy who's just like a hundred thousand other little boys.”
“If you want a friend, tame me..."
"What must I do, to tame you?” asked the little prince.
"You must be very patient", replied the fox. “First you'll sit down at a little distance from me - like that - in the grass. I shall look at you out of the corner of my eye, and you will say nothing. Words are the source of misunderstandings. But you'll sit a little closer to me, every day..."
Just a few lines say everything about the interest in discovery and the strength that observation can generate. By connecting to create new links in this virtual channel, two beings will learn to share together and make their interactions and those with their communities even stronger.
Social networks need to build ties, to get to know each other in order to discover extraordinary new people. As with all learning, most of the time you have to have patience. Despite the immediacy of this world where everything is shared in a few clicks, the strength of the relationship often comes from mutual taming where the purpose is to better understand and adapt to others.
At the heart of social networking, numerous treasures await its users. Real fountains of youth of continuous information, they transform how to be in middle of others. At the heart of the created system, each person discovers with wonder this magnificent flower that the Little Prince was looking for:
“If someone loves a flower of which just one example exists among all the millions and millions of stars, that's enough to make him happy when he looks at the stars. He tells himself, 'My flower's up there somewhere...' But if the sheep eats the flower, then for him it's as if, suddenly, all the stars went out. And that isn't important?'"
Interfaces always offer a unique opportunity to discover people who like to share, that are benevolent and empathetic. In our cities, which have been dehumanized since the industrial revolution, where everyone ignores their neighbor, it has become possible to weave a network that materializes the transition from the virtual to reality. Used properly, social networks offer users the ability to understand human relationships differently. In the midst of social networks, there are thousands of flowers that bloom every second. They strengthen these links that are created to connect their users to each other.
Just like in the Little Prince, social networks also harbor inhabitants of distant and strange planets that remind us of the eccentricities of humanity. The King of Asteroid B 325? He will also seek this unique subject, the only one to obey under all circumstances. The Vain Man? At every crossroad of this virtual matrix, he will want to be admired. The Drunkard of Asteroid B 327?
Invariably, he will be left alone with his addiction. The Businessman of Asteroid B 328? Unceasingly, he will count and record these scores that materialize the success of his business. The Lamplighter? He will continue to ensure his presence which by force, may become ridiculous. The Geographe? He will try to rely on others to draw up his own inventory and thus create his matrix.
In this space that invites one to travel, encounters can be numerous. Antoine de Saint Exupéry recalls the faults that can inhabit human beings and our humanity. He also reminds us that our society is extremely diverse and that everyone has a different vision about the world they discover. From the imagery of this author so many situations arise that seem so real in today’s world that the Little Prince undoubtedly gives us the keys to better discover others and deepen our introspection.
Each user can become the geographer, capable of traveling and exploring the Earth, in a few clicks, without ever moving from his chair:
"A geographer is a scholar who knows the location of all the seas, rivers, towns, mountains, and deserts." Thanks to social networks, learning how to get to know others better can be done without limits. In this universe where information has become easily accessible, it is within reach of those who know how to exploit this universe and the connections it offers.
Imagining your sheep
In the space available, there are a number of ways to build your network and develop your ecosystem, to project yourself in this unknown space, to appropriate it. All users try to enlighten themselves by thinking of this wonderful sheep that is so difficult to represent.
Like the Little Prince, they build an environment that is both so different and so similar to the one they know in real life. They imagine this new reality that may seem so far and so close to those what they are used to. After so much effort building their networks, they seek to achieve results at their fingertips. It is perhaps once again Antoine de Saint Exupéry who will provide them with the key:
“By this time my patience was exhausted, because I was in a hurry to start taking my engine apart. So I tossed off this drawing.
And I threw out an explanation with it.
"This is only his box. The sheep you asked for is inside."
I was very surprised to see a light break over the face of my young judge:
"That is exactly the way I wanted it!”
A sheep in a box? A little prince in the middle of the desert? It is these unexpected discoveries that await the user at the bend of these crossroads proposed by the the giant social networks. They let the imagination roam while offering reality at every moment.
They offer a world so close to the one we know that in the end that it is actually not so difficult to imagine. After some time, perhaps, even this desert land will be tamed and what at first seemed invisible in a box, will appear in all its splendor.