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Human Connection: The Ultimate Digital Currency

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Human Connection: The Ultimate Digital Currency

Sexy technology, elegant UX, and savvy media buys are all of secondary importance when it comes to crafting engaging, social experiences. The most valuable digital currency for creating participatory content, is in fact good old fashioned human connection.

Drawing from his experience creating viral hits Selfless Portraits and Snail Mail My Email, Interactive Artist Ivan Cash explains why people's universal desire for real, meaningful moments leads them to enthusiastically jump past hurdles and engage in ways that research and testing can’t possibly predict. Cash goes on to assert that people are capable of so much more than 'share,' 'like,' and 'tweet' (they just need to be empowered) by using these projects as case studies.

Author of Snail Mail My Email, Cash's work has exhibited internationally and been featured in CNN, TIME, The Wall Street Journal, and Fast Company. He was recently recognized as an ADC Young Gun X.

Sexy technology, elegant UX, and savvy media buys are all of secondary importance when it comes to crafting engaging, social experiences. The most valuable digital currency for creating participatory content, is in fact good old fashioned human connection.

Drawing from his experience creating viral hits Selfless Portraits and Snail Mail My Email, Interactive Artist Ivan Cash explains why people's universal desire for real, meaningful moments leads them to enthusiastically jump past hurdles and engage in ways that research and testing can’t possibly predict. Cash goes on to assert that people are capable of so much more than 'share,' 'like,' and 'tweet' (they just need to be empowered) by using these projects as case studies.

Author of Snail Mail My Email, Cash's work has exhibited internationally and been featured in CNN, TIME, The Wall Street Journal, and Fast Company. He was recently recognized as an ADC Young Gun X.

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Human Connection: The Ultimate Digital Currency

  1. 1. Hi! I’m Ivan Cash.
  2. 2. SOCIAL EXPERIMENT
  3. 3. CREATIVE PHILOSOPHY I love people. I love connecting with people. I love connecting people with other people.
  4. 4. SNAIL MAIL MY EMAIL THE PASSENGER PROJECT SELFLESS PORTRAITS
  5. 5. SNAIL MAIL MY EMAIL
  6. 6. THE LETTERS
  7. 7. 234 Volunteers 10,457 Letters Sent 70 Countries All 7 Continents
  8. 8. “I am absolutely charmed by this project – and now I am the proud owner of a drawing of an alligator whose artist I will never meet. This touches me in such a unique way.” — Laurie
  9. 9. “I had the best time volunteering for this project. I wrote letters in Spanish, English, Dutch, French, Polish, and Greek. My favorite special request was from a brother to his two younger brothers. It said, can you please make it look like a wolf got ahold of it. My dog had a great time fulfilling that request. Not sure if it looked like a wolf ate it but it definitely looked like a puppy had a good time trying.” — Gia
  10. 10. SMME has since transitioned to a week-long, annual event, held every Fall.
  11. 11. WHAT I LEARNED We as humans have a universal desire to create, collaborate and be a part of something meaningful.
  12. 12. THE PASSENGER PROJECT
  13. 13. w e f ly toge t h e r the
  14. 14. Next time you fly, participate via ThePassengerProject.com
  15. 15. WHAT I LEARNED People are capable of so much more than ‘share’ ‘like’ & ‘tweet.’ (They just need to be empowered.)
  16. 16. SELFLESS PORTRAITS
  17. 17. Strangers Across the World Drawing Each Other’s Facebook Profile Pics
  18. 18. “What if people don’t participate?” “Too many points of friction.” “What if someone doesn’t like their portrait?” “What if someone draws an inappropriate picture?”
  19. 19. 32,000+ Portraits 130 Countries
  20. 20. • Sponsor • UX Designer • Focus Group • Media Buy • PR Team • ModeratorNO
  21. 21. PROBLEM NO
  22. 22. Selfless Portraits inspired me to draw after 10 years of nothing!” — Jennifer S, Indiana
  23. 23. “I began thinking about the person’s profile who had been assigned to me. I wondered what his hobbies were, if he likes cold weather, and why he chose to do the Selfless Portraits project. I also browsed the gallery of images submitted by others, and felt a sense of collaboration and community.” — Michelle, Seattle
  24. 24. “Drawing a stranger has become a part of my daily meditation routine.” — Andreas B, Germany
  25. 25. In the 25 years before, I haven’t drawn more than 3 or 4 pictures - I was always convinced that I was somebody who “could not draw.” — Andreas, Germany
  26. 26. POINTS OF FRICTION 1) Click ‘Participate’ on SelflessPortraits.com 2) Log in through Facebook Connect 3) Select Profile Pic to be Drawn 4) Crop Chosen Profile Pic 5) Hand Draw Randomly Assigned Subject 6) Scan / Photograph Drawing 7) Upload Drawing 8) Crop Drawing 9) Submit Portrait 10) Share Portrait
  27. 27. WHAT I LEARNED If offered a compelling human experience, people will enthusiastically jump past hurdles and engage in ways that research & testing can’t possibly predict.
  28. 28. People are capable of so much more than ‘share,’ ‘like,’ & ‘tweet.’ (They just need to be empowered.) We as humans have a universal desire to create, collaborate, and be a part of something meaningful. If offered a compelling human experience, people will enthusiastically jump past hurdles and engage in ways that research & testing can’t possibly predict. RECAP
  29. 29. People are capable of so much more than ‘share,’ ‘like,’ & ‘tweet.’ (They just need to be empowered.) We as humans have a universal desire to create, collaborate, and be a part of something meaningful. If offered a compelling human experience, people will enthusiastically jump past hurdles and engage in ways that research & testing can’t possibly predict. RECAP
  30. 30. People are capable of so much more than ‘share,’ ‘like,’ & ‘tweet.’ (They just need to be empowered.) We as humans have a universal desire to create, collaborate, and be a part of something meaningful. If offered a compelling human experience, people will enthusiastically jump past hurdles and engage in ways that research & testing can’t possibly predict. RECAP
  31. 31. THANK YOU (PLEASE DON’T GO TO IVANCASH.COM)
  32. 32. Oxt Weekend

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