Your content is social, even if you aren’t

Jump on the social media bandwagonA Wall Street Journal article about Gil Kerlikowske and the “war on drugs” started making the social media rounds late yesterday. It was:

Update, May 14, 1:15 pm: The numbers have been updated and show a total of over 475 comments on the social sites listed. That’s more than 3 times the 133 comments left on the article on the WSJ site.

Those diggs, votes, likes, comments and tweets were not submitted by WSJ or the article’s author, Gary Fields (except for one late tweet).

Is this a sign that we are in the “Era of Social Colonization” on the web as defined by Forrester Research? DestinationCRM shared a page from Forrester’s recent report, in which the era is described as a time when “every web site is now social, even if it doesn’t choose to be.

If news sites are already social — with little effort by news organizations and journalists — does that mean media companies and reporters can sit back and let social take care of itself?

By the way, the social mentions of the Fields’ article came from an organization named Law Enforcement Against Prohibition. Is it now a journalist’s job to enter those social spaces to clarify that Kerlikowske was not advocating the legalization of drugs? If so, it better happen quickly, before LEAP posts a YouTube video or posts a bulletin on MySpace.

Illustration by Matt Hamm via Flickr

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