Klout and the other social influence indices are really trying to get at “when X talks, does anyone listen?”
Linkedin has initiated a new system where you can rate whether your connections are experts in certain areas. I like the idea of knowing who will vouch for the expertise of another professional. And that I can look at electronic CVs of each to what I think of both of them.
Nice. Simple idea. After all, it works well in the real world and has for a century.
Yesterday I downloaded a free demo copy of a mind map program. I made up a map and started to add clip art as I often do from the libraries provided in the download. I added some clips about things and thought that they were of very high quality. Then I went to add some clip art about jobs and school and professions. I could not find a single clip art file that portrayed a person of color although there were many that portrayed white people and many that portrayed “stick people.” This from a US company that claims that they have sold 500,000 copies into businesses.
The US Census Bureau estimates that of the 312,000,000 people living in the United States, 21.9 percent come from minority groups. One person in five is from a community of color. How about having some clip art in the computer programs — used to creatively portray knowledge, brainstorm for the future, guide decisions, and teach children — that represents this 21.9 percent of Americans who are productive citizens, workers, professionals, leaders, teachers, soldiers, and friends.
In this clip art set there only two pictures that MIGHT represent people of color. Unfortunately those are of women who might be Latinas working as a telemarketer and as a grocery store checkout clerk.
As a friend of mine often says … “Sometimes I am embarrassed to be a white American.”