“Everyone in a complex system has a slightly different interpretation. The more interpretations we gather, the easier it becomes to gain a sense of the whole.” -Margaret Wheatley
I have heard many voices of concern over time…voices that view social media channels as ‘echo chambers’ for the platform of the partakers. Channels serving society only as another media source to amplify, reinforce and grandstand the popular and personal ideas and thoughts of the day.
And yet, my experiences have been in conflict with that concept…the hollowness of the term ‘echo chamber’ is not a fitting ‘interpretation’ of what could be considered ‘complex systems’.
Rather, your engagement of and engaging with these social media systems determines the depth and breadth of the experience. But in all actuality, it has little to do with the social media system itself and everything to do with the network of people within. A network of individuals willing to engage, share, and even pushback on ideas and thoughts…serving as a forum for improvement, for creating change.
The more I engage, the less and less I see an ‘echo chamber’…
The term that resonates with my experiences recently…‘making of mavericks’. The creating of frontrunners…explorers…innovators…those willing to lead the way forward.
Which is why Margaret Wheatley’s quotes are so fitting. We are constantly adding our own interpretations…putting our own voice to ideas that resonate with our spirit as educators and professionals. Educators who are willing to share their successes and failures as practitioners…to engage the conversation for the sake of their passion and their profession. To selflessly serve our students, our parents, our schools, and our communities.
And that is why my Personal Learning Network (PLN) serves less as an ‘echo chamber’ and more for the ‘making of mavericks’. More and more I have witnessed practitioners sharing freely of ideas…ideas that are offered up for others to interpret…to interpret and run with in a variety of manners and directions. Ideas that spur completely new and different ideas. Blogs, chats, and tweets that serve as simple forums for sharing morph unexpectedly. A thought here…turns into a movement there.
As Wheatley expounds upon below…we have these places and processes at our fingertips. Open access to ongoing and continued learning and sharing. Access in ways previously considered unimaginable…and with people thought beyond our reach.
“I think a major act of leadership right now, call it a radical act, is to create the places and processes so people can actually learn together, using our experiences.” -Margaret Wheatley
How will you engage?