Google and Twitter have this past weekend responded to the innate behavioural need for humans to be able to communicate, no matter where they are.
We are all aware of the civil unrest taking place in Egypt at the moment and the fact that the government shut down the Internet once demonstrations began a week ago (Note: At time of posting, Internet access has returned to the country).
What this action demonstrated is, that while you can take the Internet away, people are now used to sharing their experiences, troubles and concerns with others across the world via the social web.
This behaviour may have seemed bizarre ten years ago, but is now completely normal. This dramatic change in behavior is what we believe is fuelling this social growth, and it was fantastic to see Googles engineers join forces with Twitter and its voice technology company SayNow to provide those in Egypt with Speak2Tweet. Just in case you havent read about it, Speak2Tweet utilised the few existing cell phone services remaining in Egypt, to create a new social link that provides three phone numbers to call and leave a message. This message is posted on the web as a recorded Twitter message.
Sitting at my desk, listening to these voices made me feel re-inspired about the possibilities that technology and platforms can give us to enable this now instinctive behaviour, this need for us to communicate. Google and Twitter have shown true social leadership in a crisis that not only demonstrated a humanitarian side, but also recognition of the new landscape in which we all exist.