In the past our primary groups were family, the work place, religious affiliation, social circles and had a defined and rigid structure.
Today there is an ever increasing movement of people to large urban centers all over the world as more opportunity will be located in those urban centers both now and in the future. There is the increasing impact of the Internet on communication, business models, customer access and customer choice across borders and International boundaries. There is a dispersing of family groups geographically and a decline in religious affiliations.
Today we are more like tribes. I am using tribe in the sense that they are a group of people of no fixed size who have agreed upon standards of behavior, expression, goals and a variable leadership depending on task.
Now a group or tribe can come together focused around a single event or topic and contain members from all over the world. Like tribes of old we can be adopted in by agreeing to the customs and leave when we no longer agree.
The fact that lifetime employment in a single company or industry is no longer guaranteed has shifted allegiance from the work place to people that we have formed alliances with or in other words our tribe.
When we look at blogs and communities on the Internet we will find that blogs focusing on a topic tend to belong to a group or tribe that have common customs. Similarly communities such as Digg or Linkedin have the same criteria of behavior, expression and goals.
The social changes brought about by us belonging to different tribes depending on needs and interest will change the type and quality of our social interactions today and into the future.
Is this to simplistic a perspective? Your thoughts.