The Bleeding Edge — does that sound like a good thing?

Twice today I’ve heard reference to “the bleeding edge” by people discussing what they note to be early adoption. One reference was by a social media marketing guru who I enjoy reading and respect and find funny to boot. He was talking about Plurk and his opinion and the fact that social media channels and opportunities aren’t a zero-sum game, but sometimes those of us involved in social media can get really worked up when others don’t like the same vehicles we do.

Social media guru Chris Brogan’s thought was:

Welcome to the fishbowl. In here, we get a little bit too excited sometimes. We get zealous about the bleeding edge. We sometimes get tired of things before most of the rest of the Internet has even found it. And we often crave connections and meaning and value out of these shiny objects. (you can read his full blog here).

Strangely, earlier in the day on my drive to work, one of the DJ’s on the radio station I was listening to — one in which you’re more likely to hear the word, “shorty” than “widget” — also talked about the bleeding edge.  Their discussion centered more around pop culture and male/female relationships, but nonetheless also ended up referencing the bleeding edge.

I appreciate that in conversation we need a way to differentiate early adoptors from mainstream consumers, internet natives versus internet immigrants, edgelings, bleeding edge residents, 2.0 people, naysayers, etc. 

Regardless, I’d like to stop and ask who in their right mind thinks “bleeding edge” is the right term for this?

Sure, I’ll grant you “leading edge” is so 90s.  I’m not suggesting we stick with the passe.

But, I can’t be the only one who envisions a messy razor or the logo from that 80s movie “Jagged Edge” when I hear it.  Or that new, and now overly-played annoying song by Leona Lewis about bleeding love.  Maybe it’s because I’m a mother of three tired of buying Hello Kitty and Scooby Doo band-aids but it’s hard for me to associate bleeding anything with positive change or evolution.

And to make it worse, now I have that song in my head.  Someone, quick, find a bleeding edge and put me out of my misery!


August 4, 2008. Tags: , , , . Uncategorized. 1 comment.