A huge part of the identity process is to consume culture, mix it and personalize it, and share that with our friends because it has identity implications. We even share in public so that we can get parents to scrunch up their noses. Just because technology puts the elephant in every room imaginable, why do we have to accept their dictation of how we should consume their products? Why can’t we consume for identity, for culture, for life?If Danah is right, companies are missing out on a huge opportunity to both emotionally connect and innovate with their customers.
The great brands of the future need to incorporate a means for self-expression and encourage creativity.
(One company, besides Apple, that comes to mind is Honda and their new Civic, which is clearly aimed at the young car enthusiasts called “tuners.")