Umity: Spontaneous Socialising
Let’s imagine a group of strangers that find themselves in an unknown environment with completely new conditions for them. After some time these strangers will find those who are most similar to them, get to know them and self organize into small groups. Soon each group will have its own cultural features, habits, and possibly even a form of expression or language.
“tell me who your friends are and i will tell you who you are”
This kind of a tendency to form strong social connections with people who share one’s defining characteristics, as age, gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, personal beliefs, etc even have a name is called homophily.
And there’s a neuroscience research called “The Homophily Principle in Social Network Analysis” that proves all abovementioned.
But unfortunatelly there’s the the other side of the coin:
The longer the group exists, the more it will move away from others, and with time it will begin to show distrust and, eventually, hostility towards other groups.
In other words, we are evolutionarily programmed to don’t trust outsiders, and trust those who around us.
And this is the ultimate reason for things like social isolation which leads to an emotional response such a loneliness.
And, off course, modern technology has only increased this effect. Just think about all the social tools available on the internet: social networks, subscriptions. And the technologies that makes those tools better.
People tend to stick together with the people alike And in most of the cases people like this defines one’s social bubble.
And that’s why most of us will spend our lives in such closed networks of communication, with our religion or lack of it, our political beliefs, our survival strategies, and our own survival strategy.
People with different opinions, from different social circles and with different interests hardly interact with each other. They are isolated, polarised and satisfied with the stability of the opinions of their circle.
And now just imagine someone who decided to break the system and to go beyond the boundaries of their group, to meets someone else, someone different. In this situation there’s always a good chance that a connection like this can become a kind of link between clusters isolated from each other.
And events like this actually happens in our society. It’s called “networking” or “forming weak ties.”
Weak ties are a kind of superficial acquaintance where people periodically communicate, exchange news and ideas, but cannot be called friends. They belong to different groups, do different things and think about different things.
However, despite being “weak”, such connections give an incredibly strong result:
From the large-scale study published as early as in 1973, we know that more than half of people find their jobs precisely thanks to such weak ties.
Note that they do not find work through close friends, not through strong connections, but through distant acquaintances.
And there are numerous of modern researches results that all say the same: forming the weak ties makes you earn significantly more money, more often you grow in position and actually know more about how the world works around you.
“Out of the box Meetups” — with that philosophy in mind an app that allows to meep people around you spontaneously has been created. Because “don’t judge a book by its cover” — and to create a new meaningful connection the only thing that required is a single common interest. And it doesn’t matter if it’s just a preference to coffee over tea or a habit to take a 30 minutes walk on Thursdays after work — you can always find someone who shares the same values and can potentially become a new good friend or, at least, a source of something new to learn.
“Everyone is a teacher everything is a lesson”