Sounding Off: David Fischer – VP Facebook: “The world´s gone social”

Following is the foreword of the recently published PHD Worldwide book “2016: Beyond the Horizon”. David Fischer, Vice President of Advertising and Global Operations of Facebook, highlights the speed of technological changes and wonders about where we can place the limit between humanity and technology.

This has long been our vision at Facebook. Given that our core service is social by nature that may not seem surprising. But what is surprising is the speed at which social technologies are changing the way we live our lives. The speed and scale at which we can communicate – not just with each other but also with brands, governments and businesses- has accelerated dramatically.

What makes this shift different than previous technologically driven changes is that this should be the most personalized shift in history. That´s because it is based on a human approach to the world, an approach that fulfills our innate need to be connected to each other. We are standing at the intersection of humanity and technology.

And this will be the way forward, the progression of a humanity that is more connected than ever has been. It´s only a matter of time before all technology is social in some way. In fact, the day we drop “social” as a descriptor will be a victory not just for technologists, but for all of humanity. If we think of technology as serving the needs of people, it must be inherently social in its very design.

Perhaps nowhere is this clearer than on the Internet whether accessed through a PC or, increasingly likely, a mobile device. Today, the web is less about anonymous information sought in solitude, and more about social experiences shared by and with friends. It´s how we communicate with the people in our lives, discover information and interact with the institutions around us.  It is a serious and serendipitous fundamental and familiar.

In 2016: Beyond the Horizon, PHD takes us through a fascinating and detailed look back at how technology has brought us closer together even as geography has pushed us further apart. PHD details how a social approach to technology will drastically alter institutions from government to gaming, from media to marketing. The future PHD outlines is a place where technology enables us to connect with our friends and harness their collective wisdom to make better decisions. It is a future that is connected, networked and, while uncertain, certainly better.